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How Augmented Reality is Already Transforming Workplace Trainingby@dmytrospilka
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How Augmented Reality is Already Transforming Workplace Training

by Dmytro SpilkaJanuary 31st, 2023
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While the future of AR certainly looks bright at enterprise level, we’re already seeing advancements bring tangible benefits today.
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When we think about how augmented reality can transform the modern workplace, we often fall into the trap of believing that true change won’t be achieved for a number of years–however, we’re already seeing the impact of AR platforms throughout a number of high-risk and meticulous job roles. 

(Image Source: Statista)

Not only can augmented reality help individuals to learn in a practical manner with a vastly wider margin for error, more hands-on learners from all concentrations can benefit from a more engaging learning experience as they get up to speed with new roles or technologies. 

While the future of AR certainly looks bright at enterprise level, we’re already seeing advancements bring tangible benefits today–so let’s take a deeper look into both the present and future of augmented reality workplace training: 

Why AR Perfectly Suits Training

Augmented reality works by overlaying interactive, digital elements onto a real-world environment via the use of technology like a smartphone, headset, or tablet. 

Through AR-enabled content, it’s possible to manipulate computer-generated objects within a virtual three-dimensional space while retaining a fully rendered image of the environment around you. This means that you can fully immerse yourself inside objects, enlarge them, shrink them, and look inside them. 

This paves the way for a more dynamic alternative to traditional workplace training. 3D elements can pave the way for risk-free and challenging scenarios that can help employees to hone their skills and test their competencies. 

Some examples of how AR training is helping to sharpen the competencies of employees include: 

Technical Training: This teaches employees about the components of a product by enabling them to look inside and gain visual explainers on each part of a rendered object. 

Step-by-Step Training: By breaking programs down into step-by-step lessons, employees can be guided through scenarios to find solutions piece by piece. 

AR Onboarding: Augmented reality can also be used to aid new recruits in learning various essential aspects of a business, including an interactive office layout, processes, and various other engaging elements from the comfort of an integrated device. 

Product Knowledge: AR can also generate highly interactive products that can be placed in front of trainees that can be manipulated to explore all components and to gain a deeper understanding of how it works. 

By learning these competencies in a more engaging manner, an employee can boost their knowledge sets and gain a more comprehensive understanding of the important factors that comprise their job role. 

Competence at a Lower Cost

One of the more attractive aspects of adopting AR training for businesses revolves around its cost-effectiveness over the long term. 

Although initial installation and the adoption of software can be relatively high, the equipment at the disposal of an enterprise is completely reusable and some of the hardware used like cell phones and tablets are already accessible for users. 

When fully adopted, the use of augmented reality headsets can fully replace the necessity of setting up expensive seminars or classes for employee training throughout an enterprise. 

Problem Solving in High-Risk Circumstances

Augmented reality training is already proving to be highly beneficial in high-risk job roles like those related to defense, disaster response, emergency services, and healthcare. This is because employees can hone their skills without having to rely on first hand experience in risky scenarios. 

In this regard, the seamless ability for AR programs to replicate real-world scenarios where dangerous events are occurring makes it far easier for employees to gain nearly true-to-life experience in a manner that would never have been possible before. 

We’re seeing these replicated high-risk scenarios emerge in the field of healthcare, where surgeons can use accurate 3D renderings to perform virtual surgeries without the need of a real patient. 

Furthermore, when it comes to the operating theater, surgeons can use augmented technology to gain guidance from experienced colleagues who can share the same view and help trainees out in real-time.

Tapping Into the World of the Remote Expert

The ability for employees to share their experiences with remote experts has the potential to change how we deliver training on the job. Teachers can connect with their students in a more immersive way, and some AR tools can now enable video chats to pave the way for greater collaboration and for virtual notes to appear as a digital overlay in a user’s field of view. 

As the image above illustrates, this can be highly useful in the world of manufacturing, where heavy machinery can come equipped with programs where trainers have overlaid visual instructions to prevent the risk of dangerous malfunctions.

We can see AR training in operation thanks to a collaboration between NSF International and TeamViewer called ‘EyeSucceed’, which has created a hands-free, fully interactive headset that’s delivering results in the restaurant and hospitality sector. 

According to John Rowley, NFT International’s senior vice president of global food and ISR, “a leading quick-service restaurant client saw that using EyeSucceed contributed to avoiding lost revenue due to equipment downtime and reducing maintenance costs by up to 70%.”

“The use of voice and eye-controlled AR applications giving step-by-step instructions to workers on smart glasses, such as EyeSucceed, can support training employees at their workstations, streamlining the onboarding process, and reducing the pressure and costs of peer-to-peer training,” Rowley added in an interview with Food Manufacture

EyeSucceed takes on a form that combines clear glasses with technological support via mounted hardware–carrying a look not too dissimilar from that of Google’s Glass models.

Given the current AR training trends, it’s likely that we’ll continue to see more active-inspired eyewear to lead the market when it comes to augmented reality for enterprise. 

Innovative Onboarding for Tomorrow

While there are certainly a number of cases of augmented reality strengthening workforces today, its true value lies in building a sustainable talent pipeline for the future. 

Whether we’re learning with the help of virtual guides, getting to grips with true-to-life product renderings, performing risky operations in secure but realistic environments, or testing our skills in virtual scenarios, augmented reality has the power to help us develop our competencies in a way that’s never before been possible. 

The best thing about embracing AR on an enterprise level is that it can help to pave the way for your company to prepare for working with the future of technology. With this in mind, the competencies your employees develop will not only be functional today, but they will help to prepare them for the future, too.