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Bring VR to the remote workplace.

As many of you know, with the current spread of COVID-19 (aka Coronavirus) many companies are now looking into allowing their employees to work remotely.

As someone who has worked many remote positions over the last 12+ years, I have to say that it takes a certain type of mindset to do this and be successful.

It doesn't matter if you are in sales, recruiting, or tech support, if you do not have the right mindset for remote work it will usually not work for you with how it is currently done by many companies.

I like to say that there are essentially two types of workers:

1. Those (like myself) who function at their best working remotely.

2. Those who can not function in a remote capacity.

It really comes down to how much interaction the individual person needs and this can be broken into two subgroups:

Subgroup 1 - Some people are more introverted, like to stick to "patterns" in their daily life, and prefer to not get involved in the usual "office politics" that often comes with working in a in-house environment.

The Virtuality Group Arcade Machine Experiences. The 1990s saw huge developments in virtual reality. With the rise of the arcades and arcade games, it was only a matter of time, before developers started coming up with new and exciting concepts and ideas. A company known as The Virtuality Group was at the cutting edge of virtual reality, launching a wide range of arcade games and machines that let either one or a couple of players immerse themselves into amazing 3D visual experiences. This happened in 1991, a year before the movie The Lawnmower Man further introduced the Virtual Reality concept to a wider audience of people.

Subgroup 2 - Then you have those who are more outgoing and tend to "wilt" in a remote environment. These people NEED the constant interaction with others and for many using text or video to keep in contact with coworkers is just not enough.

Now there are obvious business benefits of a company hiring remote workers:

1. Increased productivity/more employee retention/better mental health - When a worker is able to setup their own environment that "fits" them, it is healthier for them from a mental standpoint. A happy employee is a productive employee.

2. Savings on equipment / office space - Now this can vary depending on industry, but many remote workers use their own equipment and then claim that back as an expense on their taxes. This results in lower costs for businesses. When done right, it CAN be done securely.

3. Larger talent pool - When you have in-office workers, your talent pool is often restricted to the local area or those who are willing to move. With remote workers you can hire anyone anywhere (depending on industry requirements).

The Virtuality Group Arcade Machine Experiences. The 1990s saw huge developments in virtual reality. With the rise of the arcades and arcade games, it was only a matter of time, before developers started coming up with new and exciting concepts and ideas. A company known as The Virtuality Group was at the cutting edge of virtual reality, launching a wide range of arcade games and machines that let either one or a couple of players immerse themselves into amazing 3D visual experiences. This happened in 1991, a year before the movie The Lawnmower Man further introduced the Virtual Reality concept to a wider audience of people.

4. Lower Salaries / less perks - Remote workers are often more than willing to take a lower salary in exchange for the benefit of working from home. I myself, for example, could easily make twice what I have historically made but since I don't have to worry about factors such as car wear and tear, wearing suits, buying lunches, and so on, I have accepted many jobs that were under "industry standard" while still being able to be ahead financially when compared to in-house coworkers.

5. Environmental benefits - It is easier for a company and employees to be "green" when you remove factors such as traffic pollution, less inclination to use "one time use' cups or containers, and not requiring large office spaces.

These are just some of the benefits to having a remote work staff, but as mentioned above it is not something that is ideal for everyone due to the lack of employee interactions.

So what could be a possible solution to allow more extroverted people to function better in a remote capability?

Virtual Reality.

For the cost of approximately $1000-$2000 per employee, which has a good ROI when you consider the savings of being able to hire remote workers, you can provide better interaction for those that need it.

The Rise of Oculus Rift. You’ve probably already heard the story, but in the 2010s, Oculus VR, a start-up company decided to release a Kickstarter project for their Oculus Rift virtual reality goggles. Little known to them, the device kickstarted the industry of virtual reality again.

With virtual reality, this allows you to have:

1. Virtual "break rooms" - Employees can interact with each other in much the same way that they now do in a standard office.

2. Office competitions - The ability to have friendly competitions that allow employees to have more "off the clock" interaction with their coworkers, without the high cost of renting areas to do these in. Historically many companies would have outings where their employees could interact with each other outside of the office but with rising costs fewer companies are doing this now.

3. Better training - One of the drawbacks to remote employees is in the area of training. There is a big difference in being told "how" something works compared to actually seeing it in action. With the combination of 3D scanning technology and a some scripting, you can show how items actually function thus allowing for a better understanding.

These are just some of the benefits that VR can bring to a remote workforce, if you are interested in further information feel free to ask if you have any questions and I will attempt to answer them.

It Can Take You Places. One of the best experiences of virtual reality is using the technology to travel to places that you haven't been to. The right simulation can allow you to walk around some of the most important places around the world. In addition, virtual reality allows users to watch special documentaries that put them right in the middle of the action. Some of the top film companies are now producing documentaries made specifically for virtual reality headsets.

If you are a company that would like to try implementing something like this on an experimental basis, feel free to hit me up.

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