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Here’s your strategy for AR training in 2022

Robert Combier
POSTED January 24th, 2022

It’s that time of the year again, month one of the New Year. Coming out of the holidays, corporate “Go-Getters” are energized and drafting up their Proposal Decks to send to leadership. 

And they do that with good reason…because the time really is now. Chances are, your CEO and business unit leaders are scrambling to map their value propositions into the latest thing. For 2022, that latest buzz is the…Metaverse.  Boardrooms are on fire with burning questions like: How do we fit into the Metaverse? How do we engage future audiences? How do we start?

So, let’s just make it easy. 

Here’s a turnkey framework for your 2022 AR proposal

Slide 1: Start by a characterization of “Where we are now” in terms of the emergent supermassive trends. For 2022, there are four:

  • COVID & its implications on travel / remote work
  • Digital transformation: it is still accelerating
  • The Great Resignation: high turnover and strained labor markets
  • The Metaverse, and related immersive experience economies

Pro tip: Resist any temptation to bring out the exciting AR solution at this point. It will come later. This is  because Solutions are less effective than Problems.

Add some great quotes:

“Virtual worlds have been destigmatized as a result of COVID in a truly unique way. COVID has legitimized time in virtual worlds in a way that almost no other event could have.”

Matthew Ball — Business Insider

2020 was about virtual training evolution, and 2021 was about better engaging and training virtual teams. The signs are clear, in 2022 the focus is on how to adapt training strategies for a hybrid workplace.”

Asha Pandey — eLearning Insider

Slide 2: Identify the most important metrics to your business unit, and underline the associated pain relative to your company’s goals.  

Why? Because Problems get attention, increase your heart rate, and prompt your audience’s dopaminergic systems into action. If your strategy is going to work, it needs to get attention.

Characterize the Problem

Your company and department are unique, but most management frameworks use these three dimensions for their metrics and associated pain:

  • Quality
  • Cost
  • Time

I’ll give an example of metrics for our customer’s most popular 2022 use cases: Training.

  • [ Quality ] New hire onboarding experience. 
    • Associated pain: We can’t hire and retain top talent at the rates we need
  • [ Quality ] Percentage of trained workforce
    • Associated pain: Our customers complain about our service
  • [ Quality ] Travel is limited but we have people to train (or onboard, or cross train…)
    • Associated Pain: Concerned over how to manage hybrid training and what the right tools are
  • [ Cost ] Coverage of virtual training options
    • Associated pain: We incur too much travel cost for on-site training
  • [ Cost & Time ] Time to productivity
    • Associated pain: Our new hires struggle with the current training programs and force us to rely more to retain fully trained employees
  • [ Time ] Time to complete training
    • Associated pain: Our new hires take too long current training programs and force us to rely more to retain fully trained employees

Add proof, whether specific to your company or in your industry in which you operate. It’s great practice to pair your arguments with proof – particularly where you expect your leadership team to base their strategic decision. Just make sure that the proof points match your characterization of the problem

For example. 2021 concluded with record high rates of turnover, but don’t just state it. Instead, enrich it with quotes and data:

Following the Great Resignation of 2021… “as millions of workers join new organizations in 2022, the onboarding experience will be key in shaping how they view their new employer and how long they intend to stay.” (Source)

“The gap between highly skilled workers and the rest of the pack is one of the biggest drivers of inconsistent work and increased costs.” (Source)

The last segment of characterizing the Problem, is to tie state of the key metrics and pain to the emergent trends. These focus your strategy plan into answering the underlying question: What can be done now?

Slide 3: Proposed solution

Now that the Problem is well-articulated, your strategy can transition cleanly and introduce its counterpart: The Solution. In our case, that’s augmented reality.

That’s because augmented reality is perfectly positioned to address all 4 of the 2022 emergent supermassive trends:

  • Covid workaround tool? Check.
  • Digital Transformation roadmap? Check.
  • The Great Resignation? Check.
  • Metaverse? Check.

Why Augmented Reality for your Enterprise

The core of your AR strategy story is how you demonstrate that AR can solve your company’s current problems. The best approach to persuade your audience is to clearly map the positive impacts of the Solution technology to the specific pain (and metrics) your company sustains.

For WorkLink, the positive solution impacts are:

  • Unmatched onboarding experience stemming from:
    • Travel convenience
    • Wow factor to new hires (“my company gave me a cool augmented reality training course when I joined”
  • High engagement during training programs (as good or better as in-person, on-device)
  • High retention rate during training programs (as good or better as in-person, on-device)
  • Faster time to competency
  • Highest ROI of any Industry 4.0 technology

A simple table works wonders here and helps get right to the point of the strategic intent. Something like:

Slide 4: The Plan to make it real

If the Solution hits your company’s pain points convincingly, the next immediate question that’s going to emerge is “How much will it cost, and how long will it take to get running?”

To answer this correctly, you’re going to need to talk to our Sales team. These people live for crafting the perfect use case+scope+implementation combination.

I can give you a guideline though. Following a successful Needs assessment and proof of concept engagement The median enterprise customer budgets $50k for the first year of WorkLink and onboards the first 50 users to full AR productivity by the two-month mark. 

With this investment, they average a 5X ROI by the end of the first year, and upwards of 20X ROI by the end of the second year.

To answer the second question, here’s a general timeline of the WorkLink buying process 

  • ( 2 weeks ) Needs assessment and the Business Case
  • ( 2 weeks ) AR use case definitions
  • ( 1 month ) Testing and Proof of Concepts (PoC)
  • ( 2 weeks ) Procurement
  • ( 1 month ) IT Implementation
  • ( 3 months ) Success Measurement

Slide 5: Conclude with a recap and the your Company’s Vision

At this point, your audience will be imagining the future, and can easily drift away to tangent thoughts – and that’s OK for a bit. Your strategy proposal has to fit within other competing efforts and parallel projects. To pull them back in and close it, the simple words “In conclusion” work like magic. Use it directly on the slide (and say it out loud as well)

Give the summary of the takeaways in reverse order. It helps memory and cognition, and allows you to end your strategic proposal at the Company and Vision level.

  • There’s a plan for procurement, implementation, and ROI assessment within 2022
  • The WorkLink solution matches the profile of pain metrics our Company faces, now and going forward
  • Our challenges are also felt by others within the industry and technology space
  • It’s important for our Company Vision to address the supermassive trends of 2022 proactively

Finally, just like any polished Youtuber’s conclusion statement, ask your audience “What do you think?

What do you think?