Immersive Technologies for Remote Work
With the current situation being, let's face it, rather exceptional, many companies have had to turn to remote work. In the last few months, we could say it’s become the new normal.
However, now that the possibility of a return to the office is on the horizon, some are questioning its necessity. Come to think of it… should we really go back to our old ways? Some companies have already taken the plunge, announcing that remote work would become their new mode of operation by default; even when the pandemic would be far behind1. So… Good or bad idea?
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While teleworking has many advantages, from reducing road traffic to saving time and money, it also has its drawbacks. As a matter of fact, it can make communication, meetings and collaboration particularly difficult, or even impossible. Granted, many video conferencing tools are now available to us; but they don’t even come close to a face-to-face meeting. Non-verbal communication is practically non-existent, interactions are more distant, and fatigue is omnipresent. The lack of common space and the inability to touch, interact, move — simply, to be present — greatly undermines the authenticity and effectiveness of these meetings. Simply put: videoconferencing offers about 10% the value of an actual in-person meeting2.
Not to mention that not everyone’s home environment is suitable for teleworking. It's hard to stay focused when you're surrounded by distractions, completely disorganized, or locked in a broom closet!
Here's a simple solution...
This is where Immersive Technologies come into play. These technologies enable the creation of realistic, interactive work environments that can be fully adapted to suit anyone’s needs.
With Virtual Reality, for example, it’s possible to offer workers a simulated space in which they can meet, move around, interact, and collaborate together on projects; all while having the genuine feeling of being … there. The fact that the virtual meeting takes place in 3D, all around us, creates a whole new dynamic. Human connection and interactions with the environment become possible again and, as a result, employees are more alert, more motivated and more present than during a video meeting, phone conversation, or written communication. The productivity of work sessions is then increased tenfold.
Augmented or Mixed Reality, on the other hand, can allow some workers to optimize or even totally transform their workspace at home, with tools replacing, or overlaying the real world. An example of this concept can be seen on Andrew Bosworth’s Twitter account, AR/VR Manager at Facebook. The short demonstration presents us with a dynamic workspace, oscillating between the real and the virtual worlds. And, we have to say it’s quite impressive!
At the end of the day, we all need to be able to see, touch, feel — interact3. This is what immersive technologies allow us to do, from anywhere in the world. 🌎
Widely adopted… Soon?
Of course, these technologies are still in their early adoption phase. Charlie Fink, Virtual and Augmented Reality Consultant, explains that, “These platforms are preliminary. They are still being invented."4 Nevertheless, we can certainly expect an accelerated expansion in the coming months — especially considering the urgency of the situation. This is an unprecedented era, and we must adapt, whether we are ready or not. As technology evolves, virtual collaboration will become more and more common. Maybe it’ll even become the new normal… who knows?
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On our end, we’re keeping pace to make sure we offer you the best, and to help you through this exceptional time.
Our platform, StellarX, makes it easy to build any virtual environment you need. If you’re considering taking action in order to pursue your professional activities remotely and effectively, we invite you to contact us or schedule a meeting so that we can discuss your options. We’re always there to guide you in the right direction! ✨
1, 4: Johnson, M. La réalité virtuelle pour transformer le télétravail, L’actualité. https://lactualite.com/techno/la-realite-virtuelle-pour-transformer-le-teletravail/
2, 3: Brandon, J. VR is the future of remote working, TechRadar. https://www.techradar.com/news/vr-is-the-future-of-remote-working