Those in the hospitality industry might have heard rumblings of a “corporate metaverse” that will inspire a transformation in digital workplace culture, but many business leaders in hospitality may not realize how profoundly this paradigm shift will affect them. With use cases like immersive training, hospitality businesses could see a fundamental change in their corporate culture thanks to corporate metaverse technology.
Even though this technology is still in its relative infancy, there are plenty of use cases for the metaverse that are already at maturity. Some of the largest companies in the world have already made substantial investments in the metaverse and its underlying technologies. There are clear advantages to being an early adopter of these technologies, as this will give you the competitive edge before everyone hops onto the metaverse bandwagon.
One event that will completely shift the embrace of the metaverse in every industry — including the hospitality industry — is the release of Quest for Business, scheduled for release in late October of 2023. This is one in what is sure to be a line of many metaverse tools and experiences that are fully secure and enterprise-ready, meaning now is the time to invest in pilot and exploratory programs to discover how this technology will impact your particular business.
Within the hospitality industry, one of the most exciting use cases that has already shown a great deal of potential is immersive training and learning, using technology such as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). Immersive training using metaverse tech has shown the potential not only to improve the employee experience, but also the customer experience in indirect ways.
The most important thing about successfully integrating metaverse technology into the training process is that it must be used to improve upon the previous 2D experience that was available. For example, delivering a training video or presentation through a VR headset wouldn’t be much more effective than simply showing these training materials on a screen. On the other hand, using the technology to give employees an experience — something they feel they can learn from by doing it in the metaverse — can help them better engage with their training.
The benefits of using metaverse technology to further immerse employees in their training and learning exercises are obvious. For one, metaverse technology enables a feeling of presence and collaboration that would otherwise require frequent travel. In the hospitality industry, for example, using virtual reality, employees of one location in a hotel chain can see other sites without having to travel to them. Similarly, VR technology can be used to connect employees from different sites, creating more unity across the company.
Using metaverse technology for training inherently makes the process feel more interactive, which will help keep employees more engaged. The time spent in training will feel much less tedious because they’ll actually be interacting with the content in the metaverse, rather than sitting at a desk reading manuals or watching videos. The result is a more compelling and enjoyable training experience, which translates into happier and more productive employees.
Even clients or guests of hospitality businesses like hotels could see an indirect benefit from the incorporation of metaverse technology for employee training. Because of the greater connection employees can have during their onboarding process, employees can give their guests better service and more empathetic interactions. They will be more knowledgeable and get the opportunity to truly “experience” the guest’s experience, allowing them to approach their guests more authentically and helpfully.
As with adopting any new technology, the integration of metaverse technology into training requires an upfront investment, but one that will pay off exponentially in the long run. By engaging employees more in the training process, hospitality businesses can ensure better retention of the information presented, which will allow employees to be more productive and efficient once they step into their roles. Furthermore, several experts have cited quality onboarding as an essential aspect of employee retention.
While embracing the new corporate metaverse may seem daunting, the positive effects it will have on employee engagement are more than worth taking the leap. The time is now for businesses — especially those in the hospitality industry — to embrace these innovative technologies, as they are set to completely revolutionize the employee experience, which can translate into heightened productivity and a better guest experience.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jaime McMahon is the Chief Digital Officer at LineZero, where he is committed to enabling organizations to unlock their digital potential. With extensive experience in the technology industry, Jaime has worked with businesses of all sizes to drive growth through digital transformation.