Is VR the future of HR?



As human resource management becomes more reliant on virtual reality, there’s speculation VR could even replace the HR function altogether. But the advancement of VR doesn’t mean HR is at risk of losing the human touch. In fact, the opposite is true.

While the early applications for VR in HR settings have focused on recruitment, the real opportunity is how it can help shape the skills of the next generation of HR professionals. Through the use of fully immersive simulation learning and practise techniques, for example.

Simulation applications for HR

Simulation technology has been widely used in industries like airlines and the defence force for decades. Now, simulations are helping HR professionals improve their skills in ways traditional role-playing never could.

Simulation technology has been widely used in industries like airlines and the defence force for decades. Now, simulations are helping HR professionals improve their skills in ways traditional role-playing never could.

VR provides HR employees a controlled environment to practise difficult scenarios with a variety of personas, and the ability to dial the drama up or down in each interaction. This gives each employee the ability to push boundaries and develop skills with no risk or consequences. The stickiest problems and most difficult personalities can be simulated to ensure HR employees are fully capable of managing the worst situations.

Antonia Girardi, Associate Professor at the School of Business and Governance at Murdoch University, says practical experience is vital for developing a skilled workforce. “Humans are at the core of HR, interpersonal relationships and relationship management,” she says, “but this technology can be utilised to practise talking with each other.”

Managing a global workforce

VR is also a key method for HR departments to successfully manage cross-cultural teams and provide culturally sensitive training. Simulation avatars can be created for different groups, allowing HR professionals the opportunity to learn and practise dealing with issues like pay, performance expectations and even opinions about gender roles.

Simulations also play a role for HR employees who work in regional or remote communities and often have a hard time accessing professional development. VR makes this easier and saves the time and expense normally incurred by business travel.

Empathy: The real benefit to VR in HR

In every case, VR is helping to create more empathetic HR teams. By increasing capability through simulated learning, HR professionals gain confidence when dealing with difficult situations or new challenges, such as employees from different cultures and locations. Consequently, this leads to better outcomes for both individuals and the organisations where they work.

How you can learn more

Murdoch University offers a Bachelor of Science in Games Software Design and Production, which includes VR software design and production units, and aims to equip students with a thorough understanding of games’ software design and its production processes.

Students will gain knowledge on games and VR to create their own software, improving on essential design elements such as character design, environment, and user interface design, to craft compelling virtual scenarios.

In addition, practical experience will be provided through use of game development tools, complementing students’ theoretical knowledge with hands-on application.

Some of the core units covered in the programme include:

  • Software Development Frameworks
  • Games and Virtual Reality Software Design
  • Games and Virtual Reality Software Production
  • User Interface Design
  • IT Professional Practice Project

Find out more about the programme, register for a preview session or request for a prospectus here.

Credit
Murdoch Marketing Australia