Are virtual reality and mobile apps the future of job training?

Brace yourself: The future of workplace training is coming, and it looks like there will be many mobile apps, social media tools and games involved.

For its 2018 EdTrends Report for Businesses, game-based learning platform Kahoot! surveyed nearly 400 of its business users to see how trainers are prepping for an influx of millions of Generation-Z workers, most of whom grew up in front of a screen and are used to the digital space. But the report also shows how technology-friendly the general workforce is becoming, with one in four workers wanting to be trained via virtual or augmented reality and another quarter hoping to get training remotely via apps.

Of course, Kahoot’s business users are already technologically inclined if they’re on a platform for game-based learning. But the survey results could still presage a growing interest in technological training methods over boring lectures or readings.

Tradition versus technology

37% of people said they still like traditional training methods such as classroom learning, and 81% of trainers said they are still using classrooms or meeting rooms for training. But workers are also clearly fond of fun, interactive learning: 48% said they would prefer to be trained using “gamification” or game-based learning, and 36% preferred video training.

Who’s coming up?

Gen-Z is expected to be even more technologically inclined. Corporate trainers say the youngest wave of new employees like training via mobile apps, online learning tools, videos, and social media.  48% of trainers say they’re already modifying their practices for employees ages 18-24, and those changes include more interactive, hands-on techniques, more games, and more mobile device use.

Older workers are already forming their own opinions of their Gen-Z colleagues. They say Gen-Z workers are more fun-seeking, more motivated by making a societal impact and expect more feedback than past generations. They also seem to believe that Gen-Z employees are more inclined to work remotely and less-inclined to prefer face-to-face meetings over virtual communication.

Is the future of work filled with games and working from home? Well, maybe Gen-Z is onto something because that doesn’t sound all that bad.