Summary: The metaverse will redefine how we work and communicate, and most importantly, the way education evolves in the future. In this article, we will see how metaverse will add a different dimension to the corporate eLearning industry and associated strategies.
Using The Metaverse In Corporate Training
Let’s begin by understanding what the metaverse is. The metaverse is regarded as an integrated network of 3D virtual worlds. It provides immersive realism. One can use a Virtual Reality headset to navigate the metaverse by gazing around and using other commands. It’s always a first-person experience in the metaverse, becoming one’s reality. The metaverse is nothing but a digital universe.
Neal Stephenson’s science fiction novel Snow Crash coined and invented the metaverse in 1992. Zooming out and closer to the present, Facebook has been rebranded to Meta, in line with Zuckerberg’s strategic plan to create a metaverse platform where people can socialize and collaborate.
But is the very concept of the metaverse unfamiliar? Not really. We have moved around, had thoughts, and acted in the worlds created in our dreams. The drama of the Athenian lovers takes place in a forest in Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Yes, in the metaverse, just as in dreams, the first-person experience, as told earlier, becomes a reality. The metaverse draws upon modern technology. Let’s take a look.
Though Virtual Reality (VR) and the metaverse are sometimes used interchangeably, the metaverse is different from VR. Virtual Reality is a technology that creates 3D environments, while the metaverse is a shared, open, and persistent virtual world that involves more technologies. These technologies include Artificial Reality (AR), blockchain, connecting technologies, Virtual Reality, digital twins, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), digital currencies, VR headsets, and sensors. One can feel the content in the metaverse rather than just knowing it.
Imagine teleporting from one learning experience to another. Let’s say, for instance, knowing what a frontline in a retail or manufacturing industry does and, right the next moment, moving into a customer’s world to experience how that frontline’s service has been. It’s learning through knowing, doing, and being.
Metaverse Use Cases
The scope of the metaverse is amazing.
- Virtual tourism characterized by an immersive digital environment, 360-degree video content, and a scope for live streaming.
- New marketing opportunities in the different virtual worlds of the metaverse.
- Metaverse blockchain being beneficial in play-to-win games.
- Virtual space availability for work.
- Interactions with the patients in real-time environments such as virtual 3D clinics.
- A new economy where the trade of assets between users across different spaces is facilitated through NFTs.
- Metaverse fashion involving virtual collections of famous fashion houses and fashion designers.
- Shopping at virtual showrooms and virtual retail stores.
- Real estate virtual tours.
- Social networking’s experience expansion.
- Creation of wellness spaces with natural settings like aquariums, mountains, meditation channels, etc.
- Metaverse for global conferences and community events.
We now have the key to unlock the eLearning metaverse experience.
With AI-powered digital colleagues, collaboration, live status tracking, corporate eLearning, etc., the metaverse is all set to embrace the future of work. Metaverse wallets, metaverse marketplace, API-enabled translations across different metaverse spaces, and more will add more depth to the metaverse experience.
Let’s see how metaverse capabilities and corporate training correlate with one another through various points of synergies.
The first impression is always the lasting one. A strong onboarding process positively impacts the retention rate, levels of satisfaction, and productivity of every new hire. A metaverse experience adds an additional spark to the recruit, reduces the training time, and enhances the engagement level.
Safety Training Imparted Safely
Imagine that a leak is identified in one of the pipes in a factory. There are people working at both ends of the network of these pipes, and blocking the wrong pipe can prove fatal. The metaverse provides learners with a real-time environment for training them to make the right decision under pressure. The virtual world lets a learner make mistakes without endangering the safety of people or the person responsible for the action.
Whether it is tools or software, assembly line or warehouse, installation or repair, the metaverse creates a virtual twin of the real environment to help the learner gain operational efficiencies in the real world.
Customer Service And Sales
Storytelling, role-playing, and branching scenarios are at the heart of customer support and sales training and will soon become a craze. The metaverse makes them more real. Simulations can be built to handle any client relationship situations and scenarios.
Metaverse immersive training allows employees to perform repetitions in a safer environment—whether hard or soft skills. The learner could be at the store, assembly line, warehouse, office, or other spaces (all virtual) for as long as they like, till they have perfected the skills associated with the learning objective and required outcome. And when the learners step into the real world, they are close to being professionals because they have already done this in the metaverse.
Benefits In A Nutshell
Let’s now look at a few of the benefits that metaverse technology can bring to workplace training.
- “Digital twins” is one of the technologies that the metaverse can draw upon. They allow the Subject Matter Experts to be available virtually.
- Sensors and digital twins can recreate a real operational site, existence, and experience. This allows learners to study the impact of changes on the real asset that has been created virtually.
- NFTs can be used as rewards in a highly empowering metaverse gaming environment.
- Virtual translation across metaverse worlds supports diversity and helps scale corporate training to employees beyond geographical boundaries and demographic uniqueness.
The metaverse eLearning experience enhances scalability, engagement, knowledge retention, satisfaction, and Return On Investment. It reduces training time and cognitive load. Metaverse in the corporate training world induces positive behavioral change, gives a pathway for an outlier to come up the learning curve, and keeps the company one step ahead of the competition.
The Future Of Metaverse And eLearning
1. A New Era For The Special Needs Groups
Accessibility becomes a reality for people with special needs and the ability to tackle daily issues like social interaction issues, interpersonal operability, job skills, and more in a safe environment without feeling left out.
2. Virtual And Hybrid Environment-Based Learning Journeys
Work on real-world skilling opportunities using real-world scenarios and high-pressure situations. Mistakes can and will be made, but the consequences may not be detrimental. The metaverse with data science and spatial design come together to improve learner engagement and on-the-job application. Terms like “experiential learning” and “deliberate practice” will start gaining prominence.
3. Immersive Virtual Learning Communities, Groups, Teams
The metaverse can be that key first step to democratizing education by getting people together from geographically dispersed locations and differing backgrounds to learn in a cost-effective, flexible, and faster manner.
4. Surge In Visualization And Storytelling
Zoom, MS Teams, Google Meet, etc., will soon be under threat because of the visualization and storytelling that the metaverse thrives upon. A strategy or plan can be visualized well before execution. Define challenges that can span globally critical topics like climate change, education, gender, health, etc.
5. Be Human Build Interpersonal Capabilities
A coach, facilitator, and mentor all start looking like roles with more accountability across avenues like training on skills like communication, leadership, listening, etc. It’s not like we know the perfect score to be told someone is good here, as they are tough to measure. Immerse learners in real-world conflicts and allow them to practice their day-to-day job responsibilities. Create a safe zone to make them go through the rigor.
6. Drive Powerful Data Analytics
This may be the time when data unthought of will now have a possibility of being extracted to showcase what drives learner progress, identify gaps, and continuously improve the learning experience. Scenarios participation, attention to detail, engagement statistics, behavioral analysis, possible prediction models, and much more could possibly drive new learning frameworks.
As per the Verified Market Research, the metaverse market size was $27.21 billion in 2020. It is expected to grow at a CAGR of 39.1% from 2022 to 2030. Companies aspiring to be “future-resilient” will use the metaverse’s power to fuel their corporate training journey.
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