Virtual reality is the thing in the gaming industry; today, however, you can find some interesting VR projects in the corporate world as well. There are several reasons why sailing the wave of this trend is attractive. In addition to its principal marketing potential, innovation in this area can result in the savings and streamlining of processes for enterprises. And above all, in a completely new dimension of thinking about tasks, projects, and the company as such.
At Česká spořitelna (a member of the Erste Group), they have direct experience with this technology - after the virtual branch was made, their "tribe Assisted Channels" decided to use the 3D model in action and asked us in Cleverlance to help with creating a cashier duties training in VR. For Česká spořitelna, this is the historically first training in virtual reality.
Interview with ČSAS employees about VR training (with English subtitles)
What are the advantages of the new method? The training combines gamification elements (or, as Jan Amos Comenius would put it: School by play) with the immersive principle. Here, the students can immerse themselves in the new topic so deep that they feel as if they have experienced everything in reality, even if it was only virtual. For the new training format, the trainers in Česká spořitelna chose those parts of the course that represented the biggest challenge for the learners over the years, are difficult to explain on paper, and for which the automation of the process has not been happening even after they have been watched passively, for example on video. But process automation is really important. Cashier duties in a bank are subject to strict regulations of the Czech National Bank (ČNB). Thus the increased demanding character of individual training modules. The learners can practice depositing, withdrawing, banknotes checking, and closing or settling the cash desk. The fact that the training takes place in an environment identical to the actual appearance of a Česká spořitelna branch adds to the automation of individual processes and reduces cashiers’ future error rate in real work situations.
In Česká spořitelna, they use this application as part of trainings led by a trainer. Here, the learners can try out most of the tasks hands-on in VR and repeat them until they are fully automated. This is possible even for the less frequent scenarios due to the "tutorial" module. The testing module is then used to verify the extent of the learner’s newly acquired skills - the test then corresponds to the parameters required by the internal regulations of Česká spořitelna as well as by ČNB. One of the indisputable benefits for the present days is also the planned option for the training to be set up for a remote mode; meaning that the learners will not be obliged to travel to the headquarters in Prague or Brno but it will be sufficient to have a headset with the up-to-date software at the branch. This will save the costs as well traveling time. The trainers are becoming guides assisting the learners with understanding the topic and providing a professional framework for the whole training. However, they no longer have to be present at every routine repetition, which results in further substantial savings.
The first set of trainings took place in June 2020. They were enormously popular among the ČSAS employees – the courses were full almost immediately. And the project is expanding further.