Using AR and VR to hire workers

hiring-practices-visual

Augmented reality (AR) and, to a lesser extent, virtual reality (VR) already are being deployed in the workplace across a number of industries to help train employees, repair equipment, visualize models and designs, and improve business logistics.

But AR and VR can do more than train employees who already are on the payroll or under contract; these technologies can be used in the hiring process. As Jason Compton explains in Forbes, AR and VR “open up new ways to connect with job-seekers, particularly younger ones, who may be more comfortable expressing themselves in a real-time digital environment.”

I’m not sure if that means younger job-seekers might prefer to interact with an avatar than an actual human being, but there’s no doubt most younger professionals are fully immersed in the digital world. Which is why one particular way VR can help hiring organizations and job candidates find the right fit strikes me as compelling — because it essentially makes the candidate the central character in a video game. Compton writes:

With 360-degree video and VR ride-along experiences, organizations can immerse candidates in the work they’ll be doing even if those candidates are located halfway around the world. On-the-job VR simulations can even give prospective hires a chance to try their hands in the stressful situations they’ll face. These simulations give the company a chance to see how potential recruits respond, while keeping experiences safe and private.

This type of VR ride-along might be more appropriate for a job that doesn’t involve a cubicle or computer, but there still are a lot of those out there! And a reality check is a reality check, even if it’s virtual or augmented.

Where AR and VR will fall short in the hiring process is as a substitute for human-to-human interviews. Humans still are better than machines at picking up subtle facial, verbal, and posture-related cues that can indicate genuine enthusiasm and focus (not to mention disinterest), so it’s best that they remain part of the process. Still, AR and VR should prove to be extremely helpful tools for hiring the right employees.

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