Training Simulation Case Study Highlights

Designing Digitally

12/05/2019

Employee corporate training is gaining ground in various industries across the globe. The aviation, health care, financial, and entertainment industries, to name a few, are taking advantage of this boom in online training course development. Different types of eLearning courses are helping companies provide growth opportunities for employees. In turn, employees are contributing to the growth of the company. A happy employee results in more productivity, higher job satisfaction, and, ultimately, an increase in the business bottom line.

Training simulations are a relatively new resource for HR departments. With the help of Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), Mixed Reality (MR), desktop-based, and other types of training simulations, business owners are creating fun, engaging, and satisfying learning experiences for their employees. These Learning and Development (L&D) efforts are transforming the business landscape and providing long-term benefits for both employers and staff.

What Are Training Simulations?

Essentially, simulations are synthetic, computer-generated environments during which a user gets immersed in a gaming or learning experience. Simulations designed for employee corporate training are meant to teach new skills and knowledge in a highly specialized way. Businesses use training simulations to educate managers and raise employee awareness within the company. By creating life-like experiences for learners, companies cut training costs and raise the bar on knowledge retention and recall capabilities.

Simulations for training purposes are not used as stand-alone modules. They are normally accompanied and strengthened by other forms of online learning, such as quizzes, microlearning, and mobile applications. The purpose of using simulation training in a corporate setting is to allow learners to solve real-world problems without the associated risks. Employees can benefit from an engaging and fun experience and can make as many mistakes as needed until they learn the key concepts the simulation presents.

Read also: Training Simulations and the Benefits of Learning from Mistakes

Benefits of Simulation Training for Employee Learning

1. High Engagement

Most games are engaging because of their fun factor. It's clear that humans learn better through play, regardless of their age. The trick is to create an emotional connection between the player/learner and the application they are using. Simulations are ideal for combining skill acquisition with a fun learning experience. This is due to the highly immersive learning experience they can generate.

2. Better Knowledge Retention and Recall

Tied in with the previous point, training simulations help learners increase their knowledge retention and accurately recall new information for later use. Creating that emotional connection between learners and learning environments assists the working memory in remembering important concepts with ease.

Read also: 7 Key Elements of VR Training to Boost Employee Engagement and Retention

3. Prompt Feedback Loop

Since training simulations are usually played over a computer or specific simulation technologies, the employer has access to instant feedback about how the learning experience is progressing. Similarly, employees have instant access to feedback about how they are performing in the simulation. Staff can also provide feedback about the simulation to their employees, in real-time. This feedback loop keeps everyone involved in the natural evolution of the simulation training module.

4. Risk-Free Environments

Employees can learn, fail, and try again in a safe, reprimand-free environment. They can afford to make multiple mistakes without fear of failure or making costly mistakes.

Read also: Reducing Workplace Accidents with Virtual Reality Training

5. Collaborative Competition

The term "cooperative competition" is not often used in business circles. Still, with the help of training simulations, employees are noticing that there can be both competition and collaboration, often working in tandem, between employees at work. When they enjoy their job, people are more inclined to collaborate and help others succeed. And, when they have fun competing, people are more likely to enjoy the learning experience, gain real skills and knowledge, and pass on the information to their peers.

6. High Customization

Simulations are flexible applications in that they can easily accommodate for personalized learning paths. By using branching scenarios, simulation training creators can allow learners to come up with various applicable solutions to the same problem.

7. Efficient Tracking

One of the major benefits of using technology in employee training is the sheer amount of data that results from individual learning experiences. Employers can track, gather, and analyze the simulation data and employee feedback to make pertinent updates to training modules.

8. Cost and Time-Efficient

Online and simulation-based training removes the costs involved in more traditional learning programs. Businesses reduce the training price by cutting out costs associated with travel, meals, instructor fees, and location overhead.

Three Training Simulation Case Studies

P&G Quality Program Health Assessment Simulation

Procter and Gamble's (P&G) Quality Program Health Assessment (QPHA) Simulation requires employees to explore and assess the release of a new product in a fictional plant environment. Designing Digitally, Inc. collaborated with P&G subject matter experts (SMEs) to create a 3D model of the plant. Learners gain real-life experience without the risks associated with product release efforts.

The simulation includes different interactions, incorporates actual tasks, and allows employees to explore all plant departments and various aspects of the product release pipeline. At the end of the simulation, learners are armed with the proper know-how to complete their QPHA assessment report. They then meet with a real mentor for further discussion. This adds a blended learning component to the learning experience. Learners say they enjoy this immersive experience and the freedom to explore the plant on their own.

NFPA Safety Standards Training Simulation

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) needed a safe environment in which their employees could train for high-danger situations. Learners would need to engage in safely diffusing illegal or dangerous scenarios as well as learning about health and safety regulations. A 3D virtual warehouse was created to permit learners' full immersion in this environment. Employees learn about sprinkler installation and proper spray patterns in a visually detailed environment. They also practice keeping a safe distance from hazards in the warehouse.

HP 3D Repair Simulator

Designed to train employees on 3Par StoreServ hardware repair, the training simulation created with the LEAP motion device helps Hewlett Packard (HP) offer an immersive learning experience. Employees in various locations can access the simulation from their computers and learn how to repair, exchange, and update blade servers. This hands-on approach allows employees to use their hands in fixing hardware issues, just like they would do in real life. By using a virtual trainer together with branching scenarios, learners are immersed into a life-like experience where they can completely take apart the server to fix problematic components. This gives staff a better grasp of what to do in real on-the-job situations.

Conclusion

Training simulations are widely used because of their highly immersive learning experiences. Still, building a bespoke training simulation can be challenging if you're not an expert. If our examples haven't completely convinced you, feel free to contact us for more details. We'll help you build the simulation that best fits in with your business model and employee learning needs.

Please note this article was originally published by our team on elearningindustry.com.

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