No matter where we are on a VR spectrum, the one field where reality technology seems best equipped for is training. The list of automakers who realized the benefits of Mixed Reality training routine is now enriched by another big industry player – Mercedes-Benz. The company makes a decisive shift towards MR by running their Global Training program using Microsoft HoloLens.
Spanning across more than 120 countries with over 800 trainers, Mercedes-Benz Global Training set out to educate employees on the brand, its products, repair, and sales. It is a gigantic education network, accessible also through Mercedes-Benz Global Training app. April this year saw the luxury automaker incorporate Microsoft HoloLens into their training sessions as part of Microsoft marketing campaign. Now, 4 months on, the Mercedes-Benz is ready for its first fully immersive training experience with more than 100 units of HoloLens at the disposal.
In general, what MR technology offers the automaker’s training program is to see vehicles and each of its internal components is an MR 3D image. The method proves highly functional as it creates an engaging learning environment while effectively cutting the training costs. MR training is especially applicable to teaching vehicle repair techniques. It also helps trainees learn to incorporate Mixed Reality training techniques into whatever field of action they indulge in.
‘One of our participants’, Rafl Krieger from Mercedes-Benz relates, ‘a sales professional, told us that HoloLens allowed him to need only one car in his showroom’. And indeed, mixed reality manufacture education enriches the sensory experience offering the trainees different multi-dimensional perspectives. It is in many ways the perfect training and demonstration approach. With Mixed Reality Microsoft HoloLens at their Global Training, ‘we have created a visual, easy, and inspiring way to teach complex content’. In case of the sales professional above, the technology allows his customers to see and touch the same car using different components and in different aspects.
It is never too late to pick up on and implement high-end equipment into well-established routines. Mixed Reality training is a dramatic improvement over the traditional sessions, but it needn’t be considered difficult to master. To explain this, the example of Walter Bauch from Mercedes-Benz will surely suffice. Bauch is a man who, by his own admission, started using smartphones only two years ago. Now he cannot imagine his work as a trainer without HoloLens. ‘People don’t believe it’, Bauch opens up. Nevertheless, ‘this is the signal we send out to our users: it’s not the age of the user that matters’.
The Krieger and Bauch duo of friends and colleagues show that what counts in corporate business and training is the willingness to courageously accept new digital challenges. In Bauch’s words, ‘Ralf and I are fascinated by the possibilities of Mixed Reality’. The limit of those possibilities are currently under sketching with Microsoft planning to present the successor to its HoloLens later this year. Whether the new lens prove to be success or failure, more companies are expected to follow in the Mercedes-Benz footsteps regarding the Mixed Reality training education program.