How To Show Your Culture When Virtually Onboarding

An ideal onboarding process retains employees, boosts new hires’ productivity, and creates a welcoming atmosphere in your workplace culture– but what happens when onboarding can’t be done in person? 

The answer is virtual onboarding, which is the process of integrating new hires virtually. 

At Roundtable Learning, our team of experts partners with organizations to create or improve their onboarding programs

This article defines what virtual onboarding is, discusses common challenges of virtual onboarding, and shares tips to establish a  positive workplace culture for remote employees.  

 

What Is Virtual Onboarding? 

Young, male employee using a Computer for corporate Training and DevelopmentWith the rise of remote positions in workplaces worldwide, the need for efficient virtual onboarding has also increased. Virtual onboarding provides your new employees an understanding of your organization, core values, daily routines, and workplace culture – through online means such as Zoom, Slack, or Teams. 

For a successful virtual onboarding process for new hires, your process should be structured around these five goals:

  • Impression – Affirm the new employee’s decision to join the organization.
  • Introduction – Build the employee’s understanding of the organization.
  • Integration – Ensure that the employee understands their role, how they contribute to their team, and how their team adds value to the organization.
  • Immersion – Build the employee’s knowledge of the functions, processes, and skills required for success in their role. 
  • Independence – Validate that the employee can perform the critical functions of their role. 

However, this is easier said than done, as 88% of employees believe their organization doesn’t onboard effectively. Effectively establishing your workplace culture when onboarding virtually shows your organization’s core values and problem-solving skills – which portrays your organization’s culture in a positive light.  

 

Common Challenges Of Virtual Onboarding 

Virtual onboarding comes with its own set of challenges, along with the challenges that onboarding processes inherently struggle with – but when addressed correctly, virtual onboarding can become an effective and convenient way to onboard new employees and introduce your workplace culture from near or far. 

To create a virtual onboarding experience that successfully conveys the workplace culture, identifying key challenge areas is critical. Here are some common challenges of establishing culture when virtually onboarding:

 

Information Overload

One challenge in virtual onboarding is the conversion of an organization’s in-person onboarding materials into a virtual onboarding program. Many organizations make the mistake of utilizing the same training material used in an in-person session and attempting to do this over video conference. 

 

Solution: Convert Materials Into Multiple Modalities 

Learning content is most effective when it is used for the modality it is designed for. This means that taking content from instructor-led training sessions and presenting them in a virtual format may not be as effective as redesigning the material for the new modality.

A rule of thumb is that an experienced virtual facilitator can cover between 66% and 75% of the amount of content that they could cover in a traditional face-to-face environment. By taking the time to convert your content into different modalities such as virtual instructor-led training, eLearning, videos, or others, you can increase the effectiveness of the material. 

Read More: Converting Instructor-Led Training to Virtual Learning 

 

Establishing Human Connections

Employees work at their best when they feel connected to their coworkers and have built positive relationships in the workplace. However, being remote limits the opportunity to organically build these relationships.

Without connecting with other team members in a meaningful way, new hires could struggle in their new positions. If they struggle to connect with their colleagues, how can they hope to connect with your workplace’s culture?  

 

Solution: Utilize Virtual Introductions

Setting up a virtual meeting with your team to introduce your new hire is essential for integrating your new hire. Having everyone turn on their cameras is helpful, as new hires can then place names on faces. 

During this time, new hires can also be introduced to different aspects of your organization, what they do, and how all your systems work together towards your overall organizational goal. In doing so, new hires similarly experience an onboarding process that would occur if it were in person, and will gain an understanding of what your workplace culture is like.

 

4 Tips for Successful Virtual Onboarding 

The above challenges can result in a difficult experience for your new hires, but when utilized effectively, virtual onboarding can be an efficient method for integrating your new hires into the workplace culture. The following are some tips for successful virtual onboarding: 

 

Start With a Welcome Package

Your new hire’s enthusiasm for their new position may be boosted by sending them a “welcome package”. This establishes your workplace culture as a prepared organization that prioritizes the treatment of its employees. Your package should include:

  • Company-themed items (clothing, hats, pens, etc) 
  • Required on-job materials (work computer, earbuds, etc)
  • Business cards (if applicable)

 

Utilize Technologies to Bridge the Gap 

In the new age of technology, a new hire doesn’t need to physically be in a location to experience a location. Consider using virtual reality to introduce the key locations through tours and other activities to help new hires feel more connected to the organization. Augmented reality is a great tool to bring machinery, products, and equipment to your learners from anywhere. 

 

Maintain Consistent Communication

Woman working from home with laptop and book, using Computer for online LearningWhen new hires are remote, it is essential to schedule consistent touchpoints with them to answer any questions they may have. During these calls:

  • Explain everything about your organization
  • Share important information about “who is who”
  • Describe how your organization is structured
  • Share what the workflow process looks like
  • Provide the appropriate documentation that your new hire will need

In doing so, your new hire will experience an effective onboarding process and will gain an understanding of your workplace culture. 

Consistent communication does not need to only be with leaders. Encourage your team to schedule time with your new hire, so they can be acquainted with different team members. During these meetings, team members can describe their specific roles and how it fits into the organization. 

This also allows your new hire to build connections with multiple people, which builds a sense of community. 

 

Provide Plenty of Opportunities For Engagement 

Remote employees run the risk of lacking engagement with their new workplace. To make up for this, schedule as many remote activities as possible. 

This includes involving all team members in project meetings, fun virtual activities, or allowing opportunities for your new hires to check in with leaders as much as necessary. Examples include: 

  • Scheduling a virtual lunch
  • Schedule a video call with your entire team
  • Send your hire some company-branded items
  • Schedule a virtual Happy Hour

The most important aspect of this is to provide your new hire with information and engagement with your organization in a positive, supportive light. 

 

Could Virtual Onboarding Benefit Your Culture-Establishing Endeavors? 

Looking to learn more about virtual onboarding and its benefits in establishing workplace culture? Reach out to one of our experts today and they will answer any questions you have!

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Getting To Know Roundtable: Max Calhoun Employee Spotlight

This week, we sat down with Roundtable’s Max Calhoun to talk about his role, XR Developer, and some industry trends that he finds interesting.

 

What does your title of being an XR Developer mean? What do you do for Roundtable?

As an XR Developer, I build applications that make use of extended reality technologies, such as virtual reality, mixed reality, and augmented reality. At Roundtable, I work in a team alongside 3D Modelers, Instructional Designers, and occasionally other developers to build training applications for our clients.

 

How did you get into XR development?

I’ve always had an interest in computers and technology since childhood. I took my first programming course in high school, and upon completion, I decided that this was the career path I wanted to pursue. I went to Kent State University and majored in computer science with a focus in game programming. While there, I made several connections while working on games with peers, which connected me to Roundtable.

 

What is a trend in learning technology that’s exciting to you? 

One trend I’m excited about is the increase in tracking capabilities of XR Hardware. Products like the Leap Motion Controller by Ultraleap allow for tracking precise hand and finger movements. This eliminates the need for physical controllers by allowing the user to interact with the virtual environment using their hands and fingers.

 

Finish the sentence. Learning is essential to an organization because…

It keeps your organization competitive. This results in better-trained workers, which in turn produce better products and services.

 

What is something you have done in this role this year that you are proud of?

I’m really proud of the work that my team and I put into the Tier 4 project for BNSF. This application is a “titan.” Not only have countless hours been spent on programming the training itself, but loads of work also went into modeling and developing the instructional material. We’ve encountered many obstacles along the way, but our brilliant team overcame them all. The end result looks great, and it’s amazing to see how much the project has progressed through our collective efforts.

 

What are some interesting facts about you?

I graduated from college in 3 years. I’m also a gamer, and I’ve played quite a few video games over the years. Some of my favorites include the Halo trilogy, Rust, Rimworld, and Borderlands 2.

 

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What Are CGI Characters? Less Than 100 Words

Ready to learn more about using CGI characters for your VR training? Let’s dive into what CGI characters are, how they fit into full VR training, and the four benefits of using these characters within VR training. 

 

What Are CGI Characters? 

CGI characters are a form of computer-generated animated models. The characters’ interactivity with learners changes depending on the medium it is designed for (video games, VR training). CGI characters are created digitally and can be customized, edited, or repurposed at any time, for any purpose. They can be as simple as Microsoft’s Office Assistant Paperclip, or as complex as a movie character. 

 

How Are CGI Characters Used For Training?

CGI characters can be used in a full VR environment to enhance learners’ experiences. These characters are customized to meet the needs of the training; they can be repurposed to be proxy avatars in the background, interactive characters that test the skills of your learners, or they can illustrate tasks for learners to observe.

When used properly, CGI characters can serve many purposes for your training activity:

  • Represent customers or coworkers
  • Serve as an activity narrator
  • Be used to demonstrate an activity or job function
  • Assist learners when stuck in an activity with directions or tips
  • Fill out the virtual environment to be more realistic and train learners to ignore distractions

 

Benefits Of Using CGI Characters In Full VR Training 

There are four major ways that CGI characters can enhance your VR training experience:

  1. CGI Characters Can Fill The Need For Humans – Using CGI characters in a VR training experience allows you to recreate human interactions, on-demand.
  2. CGI Characters Allow For Easy Training Program updates – If you need to update the information your characters say, how the character is dressed, or how the character looks, it can all be done without having to start from scratch. 
  3. CGI Characters Can Increase Learner Engagement – CGI characters assist the learning process because they provide learners opportunities for active engagement. 
  4. CGI Characters Can Safely Emphasize Safety Risks – VR training can use CGI characters and place learners in hazardous situations, instantly conveying to the learners what could happen if safety protocols are not followed.

4 Benefits of Using CGI Characters For Your VR Training

CGI characters enhance video games, television, and films – so why not use them for training as well? 

Training is most effective when learners are engaged with the material in multiple modalities. When learners can hear, see, and engage with their learning material, they will retain information faster and for longer periods. CGI characters are integral to this process.

At Roundtable Learning, we work with clients to develop VR training to fit any need. This often requires creating CGI characters to assist in their learning experiences. 

This article will explore what CGI characters are, how they are used in training, and 4 ways CGI characters can maximize your training experience. 

 

What Is Full VR Training? 

VR is an extended reality technology that places learners in an entirely digital environment using a VR headset. 

Full VR allows a person with a headset to move freely within a virtual environment. Learners can move forward and backward, up and down, and right and left while observing and interacting with objects placed in the environment, just like they would if those objects were real.

The goal is to replicate real-life as closely as possible so that learners gain the necessary skills needed to perform their daily tasks without making mistakes in the “real” world. 

 

What Is A CGI Character? 

Computer Generated Imagery (CGI) characters are digitally-created models that resemble and behave like real people. You’re probably familiar with CGI characters from animated movies or modern video games. These characters are entirely computer generated and designed to fit any need. 

The characters’ level of interactivity with learners depends on the medium it is designed for – characters designed for VR training can be used to assist learners as they work through their training activities. CGI characters can be as simple as Microsoft’s Office Assistant Paperclip or as complex as a movie character. 

 

How Are CGI Characters Used For Training?

CGI characters are a great tool for corporate training programs. Full VR training activities utilize CGI training characters to further the immersion for learners through meaningful interactions and to help set the scene.

When used properly, CGI characters can serve many purposes for your training activity:

  • Represent customers or coworkers
  • Serve as an activity narrator
  • Be used to demonstrate an activity or job function
  • Assist learners when stuck in an activity with directions or tips
  • Fill out the virtual environment to be more realistic and train to ignore distractions

Modern technology allows us to create CGI characters that closely resemble humans. This realism can help immerse your learners in the virtual training environment and guide them through their learning objectives seamlessly to boost engagement and knowledge retention.

Using CGI characters for your training can help immerse your learners in their VR training experience and increase the flexibility of your program to last long-term.

 

4 Benefits Of Using CGI Characters For VR Training

CGI characters can elevate your learners’ training experience. Let’s review four benefits of using CGI characters for corporate training and real-world examples.

 

CGI Characters Can Fill The Need For Humans

In-person interactions are one of the best ways to learn, but it may not always be possible to have employees train with actual customers or coworkers on-demand. Using CGI characters in a VR training experience allows you to have on-demand training available in a safe environment.

Example: VR Training For Customer Service

Customer service can be tricky to train; your employees need to practice their skills while your customers still receive the best experience. With VR training, you can create CGI characters to replicate customer interactions and allow your learners to practice role-playing without risking your customers’ experience.

 

CGI Characters Allow For Easy Training Program Updates 

CGI characters are created by computer graphics, which means that they can be customized, edited, or repurposed at any time. If you need to update the information your characters say, how the character is dressed, or how the character looks, it can all be done without having to start from scratch. You also can reuse characters in other VR environments, saving your organization development time and money.

Example: Keeping Your Training Up To Date

Product knowledge training is important to keep your employees up to date with the latest offerings and advancements. If you have a VR training activity that allows your sales team to practice a sales interaction through role-play, you can easily update your activity to account for new products without the need to create a new activity. Your team can program new sections and learning paths while keeping the same environment and CGI customer character.

 

CGI Characters Can Increase Learner Engagement

CGI characters assist the learning process because they provide learners opportunities for active engagement. CGI characters can be created as “narrators” for your training content; they can interact with learners for soft skills development or fill out the virtual environment to help learners avoid “realistic” distractions.

Example: Using CGI Characters To Create A Realistic VR Scene

Great VR training activities can accurately recreate a learner’s work environment. If an employee is training for a job that takes place in public, it’s not realistic to have the learner practicing in an activity with no distractions. CGI characters can be programmed to walk around the environment along with cars or other natural noises. This will help your learner learn how to focus on their task at hand in the same type of environment they will face in real life.

 

CGI Characters Can Safely Emphasize Safety Risks  

Depending on the organization, health and safety protocols may be integral to a learner’s daily tasks. VR training can use CGI characters and place learners in hazardous situations, instantly conveying to the learners what could happen if safety protocols are not followed. 

Example: VR Training For Armed Robbery Training

Some topics can be difficult to train for, including armed robbery training. By using VR for this type of training, you can test your learners’ ability to make decisions under stress – while staying safe. An armed robbery VR training activity can show a learner the outcomes of their chosen actions (whether good or bad) without putting them in harm’s way. You can use CGI characters to play the robber along with coworkers and customers. 

 

Ready To Learn More? 

We would be happy to answer any additional questions you have and get you started with using CGI characters for your VR training program! Schedule a meeting with us, and we will contact you as soon as possible.

 

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What is AR-Based Remote Assistance And Can It Be Used For Corporate Training?

When training on complex tasks helps to have subject matter experts (SMEs) at hand. However, what happens when you have multiple locations across the globe and a limited number of SMEs? 

Meet AR-based remote assistance. By combining augmented reality technology with video conferencing, you can connect your learners with SMEs when they need it the most.

In this article, we’ll review what AR-based remote assistance is and cover a few ways it’s being used. 

 

What Is Augmented Reality? 

Augmented reality (AR) is a type of extended reality technology that allows you to insert text, images, video, 3D models, and other digital assets into the real world by using a smartphone, tablet, or headset.

As organizations utilize AR for training and development, they are also exploring how AR technologies can be used for real-time learner support. By enhancing reality with digital elements, you can draw your learners’ attention to exactly what they need to learn.

Read More: What is Augmented Reality Training? Everything You Need to Know

 

How Organizations Are Using AR

DHL set a goal to improve the quality and overall productivity of their picking process with the implementation of AR-based smart glasses as a support tool. Learners quickly learned product location, product quantity, and aisle stock by using AR-based smart glasses. The initiative improved DHL’s warehouse performance by up to 25%, improving DHL’s overall productivity.

Read More: DHL Successfully Tests Augmented Reality Application In Warehouses 

 

What is AR-Based Remote Assistance?

15 Remote Assistance Apps Driving the Enterprise Sector of Augmented Reality, from HoloLens to iPhone « Next RealityAR-based remote assistance combines the interactivity of AR technology with the ability to connect to others in real-time through voice or video calls.

Organizations can use AR-based remote assistance to connect employees and share information from anywhere in the world. Field technicians can connect with their home offices, medical professionals can connect to see patients, and equipment operators can connect to senior technical advisors to help troubleshoot equipment.

Your organization is no longer stalled when on-job SMEs are unavailable, allowing learners to access SMEs easily and preventing delays. This eases logistics and saves your organization valuable time and money. 

There are two ways to access AR-based remote assistance: 

  • Handheld Devices: tablets, smartphones
  • Wearable Devices: VR headsets (Oculus, Pico Neo 3), AR-based smart glasses

 

AR-Based Business Applications

You may be surprised to hear that organizations already use AR-based remote assistance every day. Let’s take a look at practice business applications of AR-based remote assistance.

 

Connecting Field Technicians To Experts

According to Gartner’s Future of Field Service, more than 50% of field service management deployments will include mobile augmented reality collaboration and knowledge-sharing tools by 2025.

Employees working in the field can use augmented reality technology to access critical information from anywhere they need to be. And now, with AR-based remote assistance, they can connect to experts in real-time, sharing what they see and working collaboratively to solve problems in the field.

 

Technical Support During Equipment Set-Up Or Troubleshooting

When working with complex or expensive equipment, limiting downtime is key. When you have equipment down, it’s important to safely and efficiently get it up and running.

Employees working on setting up, troubleshooting, and maintaining equipment often have access to documentation and senior employees to share knowledge. But now, with AR-based remote assistance, a single technician can put on smart glasses and have access to equipment documentation, tutorials, diagrams, and even experts at their fingertips. Whether the SME is a senior technician or the equipment manufacturer, your technician on site can share what they see and receive input in real-time.

 

Is AR-Based Remote Assistance A Good Training Tool?

Augmented Reality Helps Frontline Employees Work Remotely | PTCConsider the ways people learn: by hearing, seeing, and doing; using AR-based remote assistance supports all three. 

AR-Based Remote Assistance makes a great performance support tool for your employees. While other learning modalities are better suited for initial training to meet learning objectives, having access to SMEs to assist for just-in-time assistance can help with long-term knowledge retention.

There are several benefits to AR-based remote assistance:

  • Giving Instant Access To SME Assistance – Using AR-based remote assistance allows an extra pair of eyes to help the learners with whatever issues they face, completing each complex task step-by-step alongside the SME.
  • Cost-Effectiveness – AR-based remote assistance reduces the need to have a senior staff or SMEs on-call or on location at all times.

 

AR-Based Remote Assistance Vendors

Now that we know what AR-based remote assistance is, let’s see how it’s currently used. 

Read More: Top 5 Augmented Reality (AR) Remote Assistance Tools

 

Re’Flekt’s Remote 

Remote, created by Munich-based Re’Flekt, is an AR-based service and support app on the market. Learners can connect to a SME and share annotated files and photos to assist with on-the-job issues. SMEs can use augmented reality to connect directly to the learner’s device, where they can highlight problem areas and focus on immediate solutions.

TeamViewer’s xAssist

TeamViewer’s xAssist uses smart glasses to provide AR-based remote assistance. xAssist is compatible with HoloLens, Google Glass, Sony AR headsets, Vuzix, and Epson. Using smart glasses, xAssist displays the learner’s work-related issue for SMEs, who then walk learners through appropriate steps towards the solution – and an additional bonus is that this makes all assistance hands-free for learners. 

 

Are You Ready To Apply Augmented Reality-Based Remote Assistance To Your Employees? 

This article covered AR-based remote assistance and how you can use it for your organization. Are you considering new learning technologies for your program? Feel free to schedule a meeting with us, and we will answer any questions you may have!

 

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Mercury Extended Reality System: Frequently Asked Questions [June 2022]

If you’ve decided to utilize virtual reality (VR) to address your training needs, you’re likely thinking about this question:

How do I measure training progress? 

Never fear… Mercury XRS is here! This intuitive extended reality (XR) system manages every aspect of virtual reality training, from content management, tracking employee progress, and releasing content updates from one, singular platform. 

Read More: What Is Extended Reality? Everything You Need To Know

At Roundtable Learning, our team uses the latest-and-greatest technologies to enhance organizational training. With many successful training programs under our belt, we are experienced in helping organizations manage their XR training efficiently and easily. 

In this article, we will answer the top questions we get about our Mercury XRS platform.

 

 

What is Mercury XRS?

Mercury XRS helps you manage, deliver, and report on the data from your VR training. By consolidating all of these tasks into a singular web-based platform, you can implement effective and organized training content on a large scale. Simply put, Mercury XRS organizes your training so that you don’t have to. 

Mercury XRS gives you the ability to:

  • Deliver and update training by user, device, and location – allowing you to pinpoint whoever needs specific training materials and deploy content from anywhere.
  • Collect and observe your top-performing training metrics, as they occur, through customizable dashboards and reports. 
  • Begin, progress, and complete training from multiple devices. For example, trainees could begin their training on smart glasses, continue on a tablet, and complete it with a headset.

 

Does Mercury XRS work with all XR training types?

Mercury XRS currently supports 360º virtual reality, full virtual reality, and augmented reality training activities.

Read More: AR vs. VR Training: How to Choose the Best Technology – Roundtable Learning 

 

Can I integrate Mercury XRS into my current LMS platform?

With the use of xAPI or AICC communication technology, Mercury XRS can connect to your LMS platform* – keeping your learning paths intact.

There are 2 primary ways to communicate with an LMS: 

  1. The first is xAPI which is native in the platform code itself. We accumulate the messages and can pass them along in a stream. If the customer already has an existing system with the LRS system – we can get better data reported.
  2. The second is to offer AICC communication back to a conformant LMS system. AICC is the older standard, and this offering lets you communicate with older LMS implementations.

*Your LMS provider will have to help configure the integration with our team. Consult our experts for more information.

 

Can I migrate my existing XR content over to Mercury XRS?

If you have VR training content developed with Unity, there are capabilities to integrate your existing material into the Mercury XRS platform.* 

Mercury XRS comes with a software development kit (SDK) that allows organizations to create their own XR content in one installable package. An SDK may include content libraries, training samples, guides, development tutorials, and more.

*This is dependent on an evaluation of VR content files.

How much does Mercury XRS cost? 

There’s no exact answer here due to the customizable nature of Mercury XRS. This results in a price that can range from $1500 per month, to over $10,000 per month. 

Let’s break down the 3 factors that influence cost in more detail. 

Headsets and LicensesYour biggest expense will be the number of headsets you require for your training. You can work with our experts to choose the best hardware for your project (Meta Quest, Pico Neo, HTC Vive, etc.) and get the right quantity ordered.

The cost of the Mercury XRS software is purchased per headset being used for the training program. Installation of Mercury XRS on each headset may also carry an additional charge.

Scope of IntegrationThe scope of integration refers to both the number of systems and the data that will be sent both to and from the Mercury XRS system. The more your XR training is a part of your business process/decision making, the more you’ll want that data available to your other reporting solutions. This takes into account any HRIS, LMS, BI, or LRS systems and the amount of information moving from one system to another.

Profile Syncing And/Or Content AssignmentPart of the initial setup of Mercury XRS involves profile syncing or content assignment to specific users within the system. While you may use single sign-on to populate profiles, this login system may not provide enough information about users, requiring a secondary user feed. 

When a secondary user feed is required for profile syncing or content assignment, you can expect the cost of Mercury XRS to be higher given the non-standard authorization of users from that secondary feed. 

*Cost ranges are general estimates; each training program is unique, and costs can vary. Please seek a professional quote for more specific and reliable costs. 

Read More: What Is The Cost Of Mercury Extended Reality System? Pricing And 3 Cost Factors

 

What headsets are compatible with Mercury XRS?

Mercury XRS is currently compatible with: 

  • Oculus Quest 1
  • Oculus Quest 2
  • Pico Neo 2
  • Pico Neo 2 Eye
  • Pico Neo 3
  • VIVE Focus 3
  • Hololens 2 

If your training program requires a different headset, our team will work on compatibility options for you. 

Learners and administrators can also use their computers to access Mercury XRS from the following internet browsers: 

  • Google Chrome
  • Microsoft Edge
  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Apple Safari 

 

 

How do I login to my Mercury XRS account on a headset?

Logging into Mercury XRS on your headset is simple:

  1. You access the Mercury XRS app within your App section on your VR headset.
  2. The opening screen will prompt you with the ability to ‘Activate’ your device. This will generate an activation code. 
  3. You then remove your VR headset and access the browser version of your Mercury XRS account from another device (laptop, smartphone). 
  4. You can type in the code generated by the headset.
  5. Once entered, you are logged into Mercury XRS through your headset and ready to go!

 

How do I assign training through Mercury XRS?

Administrators can assign training to employees from the online admin portal. After each device is registered and licensed in the Mercury XRS system, organizations can deploy training content directly onto the device through the Mercury XRS app that sits within the headset. 

Organizations can organize their training content and deploy as needed to their employees. Administrators can assign training to specific devices for individual employees or by device groups based on locations or teams.

 

Does Mercury XRS offer offline access?

Take your training anywhere with offline capabilities. Mercury XRS will automatically push out updates and deliver content to your headsets through their WiFi connection. 

Users can access any training assigned to them that you delivered to your devices before disconnecting from the internet. Mercury XRS will store any training metrics on the device and send them to the dashboard when it’s back online. 

 

How do I get started with Mercury XRS?

We would love to begin your journey with Mercury XRS! Schedule a meeting with our experts to learn more!

 

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Getting To Know Roundtable: Ali Goergen Employee Spotlight

This week, we sat down with Roundtable’s Ali Goergen to talk about her role, programming, and industry trends she finds interesting.

 

What does your title mean? What do you do for Roundtable?

I am a Software Developer, which means I maintain and add features to our software products and internal tooling. I’m responsible for updates and enhancements to Mercury XRS. Look forward to new features this year!

 

How did you get into programming?

I started teaching myself to program about five years ago and never stopped learning. My interest naturally grew into a passion, and then a career. The first role I had in tech was as a teaching assistant at a coding bootcamp.

 

What is a trend in learning technology that’s exciting to you? 

I’m excited about utilizing virtual reality within the learning environment. It’s fascinating to see our clients help develop their employees’ skills through immersive, intuitive experiences from anywhere in the world! 

 

Finish the sentence. Learning is essential to an organization because…

Learning is essential to an organization because growth is essential to an organization. Investing in learning is investing in your organization’s growth and success. 

 

What is something you have done in this role this year that you are proud of?

I’m proud of the XR login that my team collaborated on. This feature will improve the login experience, and I’m looking forward to rolling it out and getting user feedback.

 

What are some interesting facts about you?

  • I’m a fluent Spanish speaker
  • I’ve backpacked in Patagonia
  • I volunteer as a tutor for a literacy program

 

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What Is A Learning Management System (LMS)? Less Than 100 Words

Ready to learn more about learning management systems? Let’s dive into the capabilities of a typical learning management system. We will also review popular learning management systems on the market.

 

Learning Management System Capabilities

The landscape of LMS providers is vast; there are many LMSs to choose from to fit your organization’s needs. Depending on your organization’s needs, you can adopt a simple LMS for employees to access materials in one location or invest in a complex system with authoring tools, learning paths, and integrations.

Read More: 8 LMS Features That Improve ROI And Reduce Risks 

Here are just a few popular features for current LMS platforms:

    • Offline learning trackers – giving learners the ability to work through content when they are not connected to the internet
    • Automated alerts and notifications – sending alerts and notifications to the user’s desktop or email to keep them updated and on track
    • Remote or mobile-workforce ready – giving learners the ability to work through content on their phone or tablet
    • Authoring capabilities – allowing training professionals to design and create learning content within the LMS
    • Branding – customize the look and feel of the LMS to match your organization’s brand colors and logos
    • Surveys – integrated surveys to collect feedback throughout the training programs
    • Social learning – the ability to share accomplishments, badges, or certificates with peers through the LMS or social media (LinkedIn)
    • Gamification – the ability to integrate games, quizzes, badges, or leaderboards
    • Customized reporting – giving admins the ability to organize their reporting dashboards and print-outs

Read More: Top 29 Learning Management System Features 

 

Popular Learning Management Systems

Adobe Captivate Prime

Location: San Jose, California

Year Founded: 1982

Integrations: 

  • Adobe Connect
  • API
  • Okta
  • Outlook Calendar
  • Salesforce CRM
  • Slack
  • Zoom

Supported Specifications:

  • AICC
  • SCORM 1.1
  • SCORM 1.2
  • SCORM 2004
  • SCORM 2004 3rd Edition
  • SCORM 2004 4th Edition

 

TalentLMS

Location: San Francisco, California

Year Founded: 2012

Integrations: 

  • API
  • BambooHR
  • BigBlueButton
  • G Suite
  • Google Calendar
  • GoToMeeting
  • GoToTraining
  • GoToWebinar
  • Mailchimp
  • Okta
  • OneLogin
  • Outlook Calendar
  • Paypal
  • Salesforce CRM
  • Shopify
  • Slack
  • Stripe
  • WebEx
  • WooCommerce
  • WordPress
  • Zapier
  • Zendesk
  • Zoom
  • Zopim

Supported Specifications:

  • SCORM 1.2
  • Section 508
  • xAPI/Tin Can API

 

Docebo

Location: Toronto, Ontario

Year Founded: 2005

Integrations: 

  • Adobe Connect
  • API
  • BambooHR
  • G Suite
  • Gmail
  • Google Analytics
  • Google Calendar
  • GoToMeeting
  • GoToTraining
  • GoToWebinar
  • Okta
  • Paypal
  • Salesforce 
  • CRM
  • Shopify
  • Slack
  • Stripe
  • WebEx
  • WooCommerce
  • WordPress
  • Zapier
  • Zendesk
  • Zoom

Supported Specifications:

  • AICC
  • SCORM 1.2
  • SCORM 2004
  • xAPI/Tin Can API

 

360Learning

Location: New York, New York

Year Founded: 2013

Integrations: 

  • ADP
  • GoToMeeting
  • Office 365
  • Oracle Sales Cloud CRM
  • Salesforce CRM
  • SAP CRM

Supported Specifications:

  • SCORM 1.1
  • SCORM 1.2
  • SCORM 2004
  • SCORM 2004 3rd Edition
  • SCORM 2004 4th Edition

 

SAP Litmos

Location: Dublin, California

Year Founded: 2007

Integrations: 

  • Drupal
  • Google Calendar
  • GoToMeeting
  • Mailchimp
  • Okta
  • OneLogin
  • Salesforce CRM
  • Shopify
  • WebEx
  • WordPress
  • Zendesk
  • Zoom

Supported Specifications:

  • AICC
  • SCORM 1.2
  • SCORM 2004
  • SCORM 2004 3rd Edition
  • SCORM 2004 4th Edition
  • Section 508
  • xAPI/Tin Can API

 

iSpring Learn

Location: Alexandria, Virginia

Year Founded: 2001

Integrations: 

  • API
  • Outlook Calendar
  • Zoom

Supported Specifications:

  • SCORM 1.2
  • SCORM 2004
  • SCORM 2004 3rd Edition
  • SCORM 2004 4th Edition

 

Absorb LMS

Location: Calgary, CA

Year Founded: 2002

Integrations: 

  • ADP
  • API
  • BambooHR
  • Google Analytics
  • Namely
  • Okta
  • OneLogin
  • Salesforce CRM
  • Zoom

Supported Specifications:

  • AICC
  • SCORM 1.1
  • SCORM 1.2
  • SCORM 2004
  • SCORM 2004 3rd Edition
  • SCORM 2004 4th Edition
  • xAPI/Tin Can API

7 Amazing Newsletters For Learning Pros In 2022

Are you looking to fuel your professional growth in 2022? Subscribing to amazing newsletters may be precisely what you need! 

Our team at Roundtable Learning has assembled a list of the top 7 newsletters for learning professionals to subscribe to in 2022. This list covers topics from learning, leadership, and business.

This article will explore the top 7 newsletters that Roundtable Learning recommends for learning professionals in 2022.

 

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eLearning Industry

eLearning Industry is a popular publishing platform for learning professionals. With articles, eBooks, and webinars spanning all learning topics you can imagine, including technology, instructional design concepts, trends, news, best practices, and more. These resources are curated through contributions and expert writers, such as Christopher Pappas.

You can sign up for daily or weekly newsletters here: elearningindustry.com/newsletter-signup

 

Pursuing Performance By Guy Wallace

Guy Wallace is a Performance Analyst and Instructional Architect with a long career of award-winning work, including the Honorary Life Member Award from ISPI – the International Society for Performance Improvement.

His blog is updated daily with learning, development, and leadership topics through interviews, videos, posts, and book recommendations. There is always something new to learn! You can visit his website and subscribe to his blog at eppic.biz

 

Training Industry 

Training Industry is a website, and print publication is known for being a trusted source of information on the business of learning. Their website has webinars, articles, continued education events, and more for learning professionals. 

Training Industry’s weekly newsletters can be catered to topics that interest you and include free events, news, reports, and resources – trainingindustry.com/subscribe

 

Harvard Business Review

Our instructional designers recommend that learning professionals pay attention to fundamental business trends. There is often a strong tie between what goes on in the business world and what instructional designers are asked to develop for their organizations. 

That’s why we recommend Harvard Business Review as an excellent resource that can be delivered right to your inbox. Owned by Harvard University, the publication focuses on information and insights needed to excel in business. While users can access a few articles a month for free, you will need a subscription to access more content.

Harvard Business Review has 20 different newsletters that you can subscribe to based on your interests: hbr.org/email-newsletters

 

Brené Brown

Brené Brown is a renowned expert in leadership and development. She is known for her work as a professor, lecturer, author, and podcast host (and she is popular with the Roundtable Learning Team).

Her website has tons of information about leadership, creativity, courage, and more in the form of articles, videos, art, and podcasts. You can subscribe to her newsletter to stay up to date on her latest conversations and insights: brenebrown.com/email

 

Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek is the author of Start With Why and The Infinite Game and is an inspirational speaker. His goal is to “Inspire people to do the things that inspire them so that, together, each of us can change our world for the better.”

Simon Sinek’s website has live and on-demand classes, books, podcasts, and a Facebook Community. You can subscribe to his daily newsletter here – simonsinek.com/notes-to-inspire/

 

The Monthly Roundup By Roundtable Learning

We couldn’t have a list of newsletters without bringing up our own Monthly Roundup!

Whether you are building a budget, planning metrics, or adapting to new technology…our training experts are here to help you. 

We work to create articles, calculators, whitepapers, and guides to help you establish and elevate your training program. Our monthly newsletter recaps our recent resources, learning technology articles, and news updates – roundtablelearning.com/join-the-community

 

What Newsletters Would You Add To Our List?

This article has reviewed 7 newsletters that our team at Roundtable Learning recommends you subscribe to in 2022. Whether you’re looking to improve your leadership skills or stay up to date on learning news, we hope this article has helped you discover newsletters that can help you grow professionally. 

Looking to get in touch with our team to learn more about professional development opportunities? Contact one of our experts or check out more resources in our resource center.

 

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What Is The Cost Of Mercury Extended Reality System? Pricing And 3 Cost Factors

As VR is more widely adopted for training, there are a growing number of management systems for your team to consider.

As the creator of Mercury XRS, our team at Roundtable Learning understands the importance of cost when implementing a new XR training program. While the cost of an XRS depends on several factors, we’re here to help you understand what to expect when signing up for a Mercury XRS subscription.

*Cost ranges are general estimates; each training program is unique, and costs can vary. Please seek a professional quote for more specific and reliable costs.

This article will explore the cost of Mercury XRS, discuss 3 factors that affect the cost, and explore what is included when your organization purchases a Mercury XRS subscription. 

 

What Is The Cost Of Mercury Extended Reality System?

Mercury XRS helps organizations effortlessly manage, deliver, and report on their virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality training, all from one web-based platform. 

The cost of Mercury XRS is heavily dependent on several factors, from the number of headsets your training requires to the scope of integration. These factors could take the overall cost of Mercury XRS from $1,500 per month to $10,000 or more per month. 

Let’s break down these 3 cost factors in more detail. 

 

3 Main Factors That Affect The Cost Of Mercury Extended Reality System

1. Number Of Headsets

The main cost factor of Mercury XRS is the number of headsets your training program requires. Apart from the headset cost itself (e.g. Meta Quest, Pico Neo, HTC Vive), your organization will have to pay for the installation and hosting of the Mercury XRS platform on each headset. 

2. Scope Of Integration

The scope of integration refers to both the number of systems and the data that will be sent both to and from the Mercury XRS system. The more your XR training is a part of your business process/decision making, the more you’ll want that data available to your other reporting solutions. This takes into account any HRIS, LMS, BI, or LRS systems and the amount of information moving from one system to another.

3. Non-Standard SSO For Profile Syncing Or Content Assignment

Part of the initial setup of Mercury XRS involves profile syncing or content assignment to specific users within the system. While you may use single sign-on to populate profiles, this login system may not provide enough information about users, requiring a secondary user feed. 

When a secondary user feed is required for profile syncing or content assignment, you can expect the cost of Mercury XRS to be higher given the non-standard authorization of users from that secondary feed. 

 

 

What Is Included In A Mercury Extended Reality System Subscription?

 

Seamless Content Management

Imagine an app sitting on the home screen of your mobile device. Mercury XRS similarly sits within a device after a simple installation and registration is completed. Within the Mercury XRS app, administrators have the ability to launch, access, and manage content within the system on their own. 

Content can be assigned according to a user, device, and location, allowing organizations to have more control over the delivery of content. This key advantage of Mercury XRS lets organizations maintain access to content, as well as assign specific content to learners. 

 

Ability To Make Updates And Develop Content

When you purchase a Mercury XRS subscription, your organization is gaining the ability to not only send updated content to the app, but also source content on your own with a Mercury XRS software development kit (SDK). 

Read More: Is An XRS The Best Way To Update VR Content?

 

Automatic Collection Of Analytics

Tracking vital training metrics is critical in proving the success of your program – Mercury XRS allows you to do just that. 

Mercury XRS gives organizations the ability to collect analytics and disaggregate them to your backend systems (e.g. LMS, LRS, LCMS). With Mercury XRS, organizations can automatically receive data, process it, and display it in easy-to-read graphs, charts, and tables. 

 

Standard xAPI Access To Learning Records

If your organization’s LMS or LRS supports xAPI technology, Mercury XRS can send learning records and completions as xAPI statements. With xAPI, organizations can capture and send key learning data to learning records for each learner. 

Even as XR data collection becomes more specific (e.g. tracking environments, objects, user actions), Mercury XRS is capable of tracking and packaging these metrics for each user. 

*Cost ranges are general estimates; each training program is unique, and costs can vary. Please seek a professional quote for more specific and reliable costs.

 

Is The Mercury XRS Price Right For You? 

We hope that by reading this article, you have a clearer understanding of how much Mercury XRS costs and what factors affect this cost. Moving forward, our hope is that you are better prepared to ask questions and make an informed decision when it comes time to make your investment. 

The only way to know the exact cost of Mercury XRS for your training is to schedule a meeting with an expert from our team. If you’re looking to try out XR training for yourself, feel free to book an on-site or virtual demo with our team today! 

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