Stepping into the Future World of Work

By Natanya Rutstein

I recently watched the sci-fi movie “Minority Report” which is set in 2054 and embraces Augmented Reality (AR) with fascinating scenes of Tom Cruise using his hands to find information in three-dimensional computerised space. Although this movie was set in 2054, AR is already making its way into the world of work, transforming the employee experience into a far more engaging and exciting one.

In the HR field, AR has the potential to make the biggest impact in the areas of recruitment, onboarding and training. AR and Virtual Reality (VR) will allow us to train employees to master more complex tasks in interactive, simulated environments making learning fun and improving knowledge retention. With the latest developments in AR, workers are now able to perform jobs without the years of training and practice previously required. The technology superimposes digital instructions onto objects that employees are working on, providing step-by-step instructions and dispensing with lengthy and costly training.

What’s the difference between AR and VR?

AR takes place in the real world, in real time and allows you to overlay digital information onto real world objects. VR, on the other hand uses technology to create a completely separate and 100% digital-experience within a simulated environment. VR fools our senses into believing that we are having an actual real-world experience.

Picture it…

If you’re lucky enough to work for a forward-thinking organisation which has implemented some of these technologies, this is how your recruitment and onboarding experience could unfold.

After seeing a job add on Snapchat, you apply for the job by adding a lens to the Snapchat app. The lens allows you to turn yourself into a virtual employee of the company and record a 10-second video to pitch on why they should consider you for employment. The pitch is then sent to the company and you are contacted for an interview (McDonald’s Australia actually did this). Congratulations! You are hired.

Prior to starting, you are able to access a VR tour of the corporate campus, meet the avatars of your management team, interact with members of your team, engage in meetings and simulations to learn more about the company history, culture, purpose and products. All the time, aligning your expectations with what the company has to offer.

Your first day – Forget the traditional boring and time- consuming onboarding process and fast forward to the future of work. You’re presented with an AR headset which gives you interactive access to more detailed company information, allows you to wander around and discover who sits where, meet your clients and engage with your colleagues to find out more about what they do and how they can assist you.

In the future these kind of employee experiences will become the norm as more organisations move to adopt AR and VR technology solutions. HR professionals must stay informed of the latest technology trends and start to consider how they can be used to attract, engage and retain a talented workforce within their organisations.

Imagine what a learning path would look like using this technology!

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