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Metaverse Could Transform HR?

Three Ways the Metaverse Could Transform HR

July 21, 2022 14:04 PM

Metaverse in HR

Here’s our attempt at explaining the vague and difficult term, that is, "the Metaverse."

It is a virtual or alternate world in which someone is substituted by digital avatars and where they can collect together irrespective of their geographical location.

Sounds too simple? Well, that’s because it is an oversimplification of an elaborate set of thoughts. The reality is that the metaverse is a complicated, growing creature, expanding its reach across technical dimensions. To that extent, even HR in the metaverse doesn’t sound like an unimaginable idea.

Ever since the adoption of AI and automation became mainstream, the chances of the impact of technology have increased exponentially. Organizations are constantly examining how to incorporate new technologies into their current procedures.

But, in all seriousness, what does the metaverse even mean, and what chances does it have in store for HR?

What does the metaverse mean?

When the topic comes to defining what "the metaverse" really means, I don’t imagine the conversation would be too far removed from the discussions about "the internet" in the 1970s. Nevertheless, I think that the answer lies in the vagueness of the term. Here’s an activity for you: Find a sentence with "the metaverse" in it and replace it with "cyberspace." Nine out of ten times, the meaning of the sentence won’t be particularly modified.

That’s because the metaverse doesn’t refer to a distinct type of technology but rather a change in the way we interact with technology. What makes the metaverse so transformational is that it forms a part of the development of a new version of the World Wide Web—Web 3.0.

At its heart, the metaverse is a more interactive version of today’s social networking medium.

It can be made up of virtual reality (VR)—which is characterized as virtual spaces that continue to live even if an individual isn’t attending to them—as well as augmented reality (AR), which combines parts of the digital and physical worlds. However, VR and AR aren’t required tools to take part in the metaverse. Spaces with virtual world essences like Fortnite that can be accessed through PCs, game consoles, or even phones, could be metaverse.

The metaverse is also a digital economy, where you can make, buy, and sell goods. While one can execute these moves on Fortnite, it doesn’t necessarily indicate that Fortnite is "the metaverse." That would be a bit like saying Google is "the internet."

On the other hand, just as it would be correct to say that Google creates parts of the internet, it is also accurate to state that the developer of Fortnite, Epic Games, is making parts of the metaverse. And other organizations are embarking on an identical investment. Facebook’s current rebranding to Meta is a reflection of this.

The metaverse is a lot of things. Where we are at this moment is a vague sense of something that can kind of be named the metaverse.

HR in the metaverse: Which procedures will transform first?

The metaverse is already here. The technologies that can get individuals into the metaverse age are already proliferating the market. Let’s take a look at what HR in the metaverse can potentially look like as well as some real-world applications that illustrate its use:

Talent Acquisition

A perceptible change that’s already underway, the metaverse in the workplace will look like a serious investment by companies in the technological infrastructure of businesses.

Virtual recruitment fairs are one instance of prospects getting an option to engage with potential employers and getting a real demonstration of the type of business they could be operating for. People like more businesses to deliver virtual tours, which will enable potential candidates to get a flavor of the office culture.

For example, check out this virtual tour by Deloitte, developed by Blend Media, that gives potential candidates a tour of the workplace. The tour can be considered on the desktop along with a pair of headsets to give an immersive experience. Deloitte utilized Blend Media to create an engaging and interactive 360-degree experience that allowed candidates to feel secure and satisfied with their new office.

Work Structure

Work and team establishments will probably go through a fundamental transformation in the metaverse workplace. The past two years have already seen the workforce shift into a hybrid work structure, with meetings and associations taking place on technology platforms.

The metaverse will change work by creating group conversations and collaborations much more immersive by enabling interactions using hands-free devices and avatars rather than laptops and smartphones.

For example, previously, Facebook and Meta built Horizon Workrooms to reimagine remote work collaboration. The social networking giant expressed Workroom as a virtual meeting space where associates can work together from anywhere. Workers can join in a meeting as an avatar or dial into a virtual room by video calling through a computer.

With Workrooms, employees can use virtual keyboards to sketch pictures out together, bring their computer and keyboard into VR to work together, and also participate in water cooler conversations that were dearly missed in the earlier remote working days.

Learning & Development

Employees will be required to know how to operate inside the metaverse. HR in the metaverse will witness a gain in transition management training. The metaverse in the workplace will also represent an investment in new technologies. Virtual human resource management will require reassessing how to educate and train employees in these new technologies and software.

For now, metaverse in HR can create interactive and immersive learning experiences for employees with the use of virtual reality. A VR training experience can enhance employee performance by 70%, and employers can train and educate employees by allowing them to run through real-life systems in the VR format to qualify them.

Here’s an illustration of how Make Real worked in collaboration with Vodafone to create a VR application to authorize learners to take on the role of field engineer to install and maintain cell phone infrastructure. Not only does a VR training experience make complete remote learning and skill growth a possibility, but it also sees a 96% decrease in training time.

The improvement is required for the metaverse to transform HR.

But the last question of the matter is, does HR in the metaverse presently have a well-paved path to succeed in the company? The answer, for now, is no. When it comes to the practical application of the metaverse in the workplace, we have yet to see a strong contender.

In addition, the cost of adopting the tools to use within the metaverse may not be something that most companies will be ready to take on. The technology for the metaverse is still in effect and is treacherous to adopt. Getting every employee a VR headset to access the metaverse would cost businesses a minimum of $600 per employee to execute. An adoption that expensive would likely make sense during a time when the part of the metaverse in the workplace is more determined.

And as I’ve already noted before, the metaverse isn’t a particular kind of technology, rather it is a shift in the way we interact with technology. So, not only would it implicate VR headsets, but companies may also be required to help employees upgrade their broadband packages to support the tech and also offer training.

We are now operating in a world where HR systems proliferate the market. Most organizations in the world, including the likes of big names like Nike, have between 6 and 15 HR solutions in their class. Adding another tech stack to the plate would have to be approached with much caution.

The metaverse is a stimulating new technology that companies and HR departments should be familiar with. While the options for metaverse in HR are still in their infancy, businesses that take the time to evaluate the practical applications and the chance to use this technology to enhance interaction within their organization will be ahead of the game when it comes to reaping the advantages.

And, in today's world, where meeting employee needs is more vital than ever, businesses must do everything possible to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to the next big thing.

The Future of Work and Metaverse

According to Gartner, 25% of people will pay at least one hour every day in the metaverse for work, education, retail, social networking, and/or leisure by 2026. View a metaverse as the Internet, which started as irrelevant bulletin boards and online goals. These sites finally became goals in a virtual shared space, similar to how the Metaverse will increase.

Technology’s virtual workplace may start to seem more appealing as a way for individuals to be there with other people in a digital location. The long-term objective is for users to be able to enter the Metaverse from a combination of devices and locations, whether through mobile apps or immersive virtual and augmented reality technologies.

Closing Thoughts

While the metaverse is not without its challenges—notably with concerns about data security and high costs—it could likely revolutionize our workplaces, not because big tech firms are making it but because of its measurable value. To provide this unique future of work that lets even more people experience it remotely and do so in a more authentic way, HR will be required to steer this development.

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