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How to use virtual reality for employee training: 3 VR platforms to check out


Training employees is one of the most popular and effective uses of virtual reality (VR) in business. Being able to fully engage an employee in a virtual world designed to present them with potential scenarios, job challenges, and unfamiliar technology before encountering them in the real world can save businesses a lot of time and money. STRIVR Enterprise, HTC VIVE Business Edition VR System, and Doghead Simulations rumii are three options you may want to consider for employee training.

SEE: Virtual and augmented reality policy (Tech Pro Research)

Walmart, Chipotle, Verizon, Tyson, Fidelity Investments, United Rentals, JetBlue, and other companies are currently applying STRIVR technology in their employee training. For instance, using Oculus Go headsets, STRIVR Enterprise is helping teach Walmart employees about new technology, compliance, and customer service skills. According the the STRIVR website, United Rentals has used their technology to cut training time for employees by 40%.

STRIVR Enterprise is designed to engross employees in a virtual experience, enhance overall job performance, and lower training costs. The technology also provides insights into how employees are learning, providing management with real-time feedback so they can modify training accordingly. The platform can be utilized for training in a classroom setting, as well as for coaching and self-guided sessions. The software is compatible with Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Daydream, and Samsung Gear VR headsets. STRIVR offers various pricing packages spanning from three-month pilot programs to one- to three-year deployments. For specific pricing information, please contact STRIVR.

Like STRIVR Enterprise, HTC VIVE Business Edition shows promise as a training tool for employees; it is also designed to help businesses engage customers and develop products. VIVE Business Edition can be expanded with VIVE Tracker Ecosystem to make real-life objects and tools virtual; this allows for applications with motion capture, automotive, aerospace, or simulation of heavy equipment.

System and hardware requirements for VIVE include: VIVE Pro VR headset with commercial licensing and protection plans VIVE Enterprise Advantage or Advantage+ for VR apps, Windows 7 or above, Microsoft .NET Framework 4.6 or later, and an internet connection for downloading content. The system pricing starts at $1,399, with Advantage and Advantage+ starting at $199 and the Tracker Ecosystem priced at $99. If you want to make your VR training wireless, VIVE offers a wireless adapter for $299 (it supports VIVE and VIVE Pro).

Rumii helps remote workers come together in a simulated world, facilitating virtual collaboration for educating and training employees. With this technology, companies can meet with and train remote employees without any travel required. Features include: A 3D model loader, a whiteboard function (which can be saved to the cloud for later use), screen and content sharing, and virtual meeting rooms.

Compatible with HTC Vive, Oculus Go/Rift, and Windows Mixed Reality headsets, rumii is intended for VR use, though it’s multiplatform and can also be used on a Windows PC, Android OS, or Mac OS. Rumii is free for up to three users; for four or more users, the price is $14.99 per month, per user. The paid subscription service allows for 10 GB of storage vs. 1 GB for the free service.

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Image: Melpomenem, Getty Images/iStockphoto



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