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Pfizer: Transforming How We Train with XR

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Episode Summary

How do you take a pilot project for immersive technology and introduce it to one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world? Pfizer’s Smart Factory Technology Manager, Nick Hockley, says it comes down to one word: “Consistency.” Change is hard. It’s even harder when you reinvent new processes and training with an emerging, evolving technology like VR and AR.

In this episode, Will and Brad talk about what it takes to implement XR in enterprise. Nick reflects on all the necessary steps, from showing proof-of-concept, measuring success and impact, creating AR/VR content in house, having consistent conversations with key decision-makers internally, being patient with the process, and more.

Key Moments

  • Getting started in XR with Pfizer (01:09)
  • What was it like implementing new immersive technology (04:19)
  • How did you go from pilot project to full-scaled XR deployments? (06:55)
  • What has been successful in XR, and how have you measured that success? (13:23)
  • In-house app development vs. working with vendors (20:13)
  • Changing the dialogue about XR internally as you see success (24:39)
  • What does device management look like in enterprise for XR? (28:10)
  • Why did you decide to use in-house app developers? (29:37)
  • What headsets do you recommend for enterprise? (33:52)
  • What might surprise us about the future of XR? (35:55)
"In big corporate structures, change moves at a slow pace.. It’s all about consistency. Do not be deterred the first time you try to bring in a new technology or concept. Consistently find ways to bring your ideas to the right people."
xr industry leaders podcast with arborxr and nicholas hockley of pfizer
Nicholas Hockley
Smart Factory Technology Manager at Pfizer

About the Guest

Nicholas Hockley is an experienced XR Product Manager with 6+ years of leading teams that develop, deploy, and implement award winning XR solutions for the Enterprise. He manages a portfolio of 3D solutions including but not limited to VR Trainings, Enterprise Metaverse, 3D scanning solutions, and XR device support systems.

He is currently the Solution Owner for the Virtual Reality workstream on the Pfizer Digital Manufacturing team focusing on creating 3D experiences that open new pathways for learning, collaboration, and operation.

Episode Transcript

Brad Scoggin: Hey there, welcome to “XR Industry Leaders” with ArborXR. My name is Brad Scoggin, and I am the CEO and one of three co-founders of ArborXR. And we’ve had the opportunity of working with thousands of companies since 2016, and we’ve learned a ton about what it takes for XR to be successful in your organization.

Will Stackable: And I’m Will Stackable, co-founder and CMO. This podcast is all about interviewing the leaders who are on the ground making XR happen today. True pioneers in the space from Amazon, Walmart, and UPS to Koch, Pfizer, and beyond to uncover the pitfalls, lessons learned, and secrets that you can use to help grow XR in your organization.

Brad Scoggin: All right, Nick, well, thank you so much for joining us today. I would love to hear you’ve been at Pfizer for almost six years, but before we even jump into that, I would love to hear about a little bit of your personal journey into XR.

Nick Hockley: Sure, yeah, it’s great to be in the podcast. Thank you, thank you both for having me on. My personal journey, you know, maybe into XR even starts before I was in XR at Pfizer. You know, I joined Pfizer in 2016, through a rotational program, the digital rotational program, where I rotated through a few different teams and ended up landing into a team that was doing innovation specifically for the manufacturing side of things, digital innovation team. And really, you know, what they were doing was focusing on identifying which XR technologies were gonna unlock the most business value in the shortest amount of time. And we were looking into things like AR, VR, 3D scanning, drones, 3D printing, you know, everything at that time in 2018 that was, you know, clearly starting to show up on the Gartner reports and really starting to get some traction across the enterprise landscape. And after doing a few proof of concepts and starting to see the demand coming in from the different organizations across Pfizer, it became pretty apparent that the one that was gonna have the most immediate value was gonna be VR and kind of the 3D scanning concept. And as you guys know, they marry together pretty well. So I’ve really found XR through a team, you know, rotating through the rotational program. And, you know, I did rotations, information security, and an ERP SAP deployments and as soon as I got into the innovation space, where we were working with XR, it was, you know, it really lit me up and fueled my passions. And, you know, I love marrying, you know, thinking creatively and understanding problems, business problems, and thinking of new and creative ways, especially with new technology to solve them. So it was really an immediate click for me, and it’s where I decided to begin my career. So it’s been about four, four and a half, five years now working in that space at Pfizer. And we’ve really seen it grow pretty exponentially, just internally at Pfizer, in terms of XR with the focus on VR and AR and other 3D capabilities, so, kind of found me, I guess you could say.

Brad Scoggin: No, that’s very interesting. So your initial exposure to XR was at Pfizer?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, I mean I dabbled with VR and XR, you know, in a consumer sense, you know, and I think when I was looking into it, it was I think the whole industry was still really young. So it’s almost like I got into XR, right when the industry really started to, for its gears really started to start turning. So I’ve just always had that enterprise lens on things. It’s almost like enterprise first for me.

Brad Scoggin: Yeah, that’s very cool. The timing is so important. I mean, even for us, my background was in nonprofit space and then we kind of shifted. We just hit it at the right time. I mean, I was not really an XR enthusiast until it was time. And I think sometimes that works out really well. I think something else we’d be interested to hear about, would be, you talk about kind of your experience, in leading change in organizations and with XR specifically, I mean, it sounds like Pfizer had a process, of identifying what types of technology, that you did want to adopt and move forward with, but once you got it narrowed down to that shortlist, what was the process like for you, to sell to leadership, to sell internally, to actually move from, okay, here’s a technology that we’re excited about to begin, kinda the front edge of implementation?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, you know, and big corporate structures, you know, change moves at a very slow pace. So I think the biggest word, I would hit home here is consistency. And also, you know, not being deterred. You know, the first time you try to bring in, a new technology or a new concept, and it’s not necessarily given, you could be really excited about it, and it could be, you know, you could see all the value, it’s gonna unlock, the short term and the long run for a company, and then you could take it to somebody and they’re not gonna have that shared vision and to not get deterred by that and to consistently find ways, to get it in front of the right people, you know and continue to bring it to your manager and understand and do your own research. So every time you’re having those conversations, you know, you’re able to sway their perception, maybe a little bit more every single time, you know, and eventually it sways in your favor. And, you know I think one of the advantages to being, at a company so long, which I know is unheard of, in today’s day and age, you know, especially for the younger generation is, the longer you’re there the more people know your face and they know kind of what you’re representing and the type of solutions that you’re supporting. And it took multiple years to really have its way, to get momentum going and we didn’t really get into, how we’ve built our own internal VR 3D team at Pfizer, but, you know, for that point to happen, it took two years to just proof of concept and being consistent with what we are finding and identifying clearly, where the business value was gonna be.

Will Stackable: Many of our listeners are either doing a pilot project right now in their company or they’re in the process of transitioning, from pilot to some kind of scale. Could you talk a little bit about just doing the pilot project and then what it took, to get the sign-off to go from pilot to some larger scale?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, with the pilot projects, you really have to find somebody at, you know, at a manufacturing level. It’s at a company like Pfizer, it’s so big. You have to find, you have to find someone, at a manufacturing level that’s at the site that, has some general understanding of the technology or else it’s gonna be really hard to get things moving because you’re gonna spend, the first couple months of that engagement, just bringing them up to speed, right? So if you already have someone that, and they’re out there, you might, you know, you might have tried and have not found that right person, but once you find that person, that understands really the value, that this technology can unlock, it’s gonna make the whole pilot and the whole project go a lot smoother. In terms of identifying it, it’s something that, you know, it took a lot of just going and understanding and hearing what specific site needs were. Specifically, our focus is in training. So going and meeting with training leads, at different manufacturing sites, to understanding where their pain points are and not just automatically assuming VR, is gonna fix everything, but understanding what, you know, the strengths of virtual reality are, which is, you know, creating time and space, for lack of a better word, to train people in that are, whereas you wouldn’t have access normally, right? So understanding what those specific nuances were and focusing on them and building out, you know, a consumable proof of concept, that is not biting off a bigger chunk of what you want to accomplish, you know, making it realistic, right? And setting those expectations up front and having the people that you’re creating the proof of concept with, along for that entire journey as well, ’cause it’s new for the whole organization, it’s new for everybody. So in terms of identifying the pilot, it’s going and talking to those people on the bottom lines. And then also having an understanding of the technology and knowing where its strengths are and where its weaknesses are and finding that correct marriage. In terms of scale, you know, for lack of, you know, for lack of a better boost, you know, covid really, you know, I think really shifted everything and the way that the entire enterprise industry, is viewing collaboration and training and, you know, in 2020 when it hit, you know, we just saw an enormous demand, to take everything virtual instantly. And, you know, at that point it was pretty clear to us that, you know, using a vendor model, to create all of our content, was gonna cost us more in the long run, than it was gonna save us. Especially when you’re working with trainings and different types of procedures, at a site level that change. So if you’re not owning the experience, the content, any of that, you know, from the start, every time, that a certain change is gonna come in for, at a procedural level, at a site level, which happens a lot in manufacturing, you’re gonna have to be going back to the vendor and trying to make a change request and it’s gonna add up over time. So the realisticness and the feasibility of scaling up, came down to kind of building out that business case and showing those numbers, that made leadership realize at the same time, having a hefty backlog of inquiries and different projects that were coming in, to be able to kind of show that, you know, there is a long-term vision here and it’s not going away. And if this is something that we wanna take seriously, it’s you know, the upfront investment and getting the structure in place, it’s gonna pay off dividends in the long run.

Brad Scoggin: So as you’re going through that process, of selling again, you know, the initial proof of concept and then going to scale, was there a moment or where leadership says, okay, now we get it? Or was it really just this ongoing, like you said, consistent process the whole time?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, there’s definitely like a change of heart, you know, the two years of proof of concepts and identifying those and presenting them out and, you know, nothing really moving too much to, a little bit more of a sense of urgency, being built around it just because of, you know, that 2020 mark our site saying that, they needed these types of solutions, ’cause they had no way to actually unlock these trainings, for individuals when we were in operation lightspeed, at Pfizer to make as many vaccines as possible. You know, it was kind of a perfect storm, to make that case, right? And when that happens, you know, I think everyone was a little bit more open to trying things differently at that time. So I think we capitalize that in some sense, capitalize on that in some sense. But at the same time, I don’t think it means that I think it’s inevitable for organizations, for that to come and for leaders and management, to kind of have that realization.

Brad Scoggin: So you were building the momentum and Covid was just kind of the accelerant, yeah.

Will Stackable: You mentioned numbers being important to make the case. Could you share a little bit about, what have you seen, what’s been successful and what numbers could you share with us, about your programs?

Nick Hockley: Sure, as I mentioned, our main focus in manufacturing, is in training and as I mentioned, you know, one of the main use cases that got a lot of feedback, was a training we built around upskilling the new workforce, that was coming in that needed to be trained, on how to operate and maintain production lines, during the pandemic. There’s a large amount of the employees that were hired, to support those efforts and there was no time and no actual physical environment, for them to get the repetitions and the experience they needed to carry out the tasks, on the production line to get familiar, with what they had to do and perform their job. So there was this bottleneck. And what we’ve seen is at a manufacturing shop floor level, the time it takes a fresh onboarded employee or technician or operator, that comes into the manufacturing space to get proficient and signed off on the job, sign from an on the job sign off an OJT perspective, through all of the trainings he needs to learn, it takes about a year and a half in total time and that fluctuates and can go up and down depending, you know, that’s about an average and that can go up and down depending on their role. And a lot of that time is just waiting for the right moment, the right setup, the right scenario, proper access to a certain line, to get enough repetitions for them to feel familiar and be able to go and do an on-the-job sign off, with someone watching them and go through from start to end, in completion with no help, right?

Brad Scoggin: I think you just described like the dream scenario for VR, I mean like word for word, yeah, sorry. That was beautiful.

Nick Hockley: Yeah and it’s, you know, it takes someone four to six repetitions to get familiar, on average with this any type of process whether it’s setup, cleaning, maintenance, intervention, anything. And it’s really hard to recreate these scenarios. So, you know, we immediately saw, when we started to roll out the training, as people starting to go through with that, you know, our training leads were reporting back, you know, about a 40% reduction in total training time, you know, cutting those repetitions.

Will Stackable: Can you say that again, 40%? What’s the baseline number of hours or so what is, that’s a significant number, that’s wild. Can you give a context for how big, of a decrease for the training time it was?

Nick Hockley: It was like in the 700, 732 hours, down to like 400 something per, yeah per new joinee.

Will Stackable: And do you mind me asking, could you share anything about how often you’re doing new training for new employees? Is that daily, weekly, what’s the, is it a constant churn of new people?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, I mean it fluctuates around initiatives and priorities and by site and by region, but it’s pretty consistent, you know, I mean there’s always someone waiting to be trained, I would say, you know, like at the end of the day, you know, there needs, there’s a gap between, having access and having access to training. I think that’s pretty standard across the whole network.

Will Stackable: So you’re saving not just a few hours, but hundreds of hours for every new trainee. What about the quality of the training? Did you see anything? Was there an increase in their efficiency or a reduction of errors once they’re on the line?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, I mean that’s something, that we’re tracking pretty closely and it’s still pretty new, you know, we rolled this out 2021, so, you know, to get these high, the over high level, reduction in quality metrics, it’s something just at a site level, where we’ve really started to roll this out, that we have to start monitoring from the top down. Unfortunately, we don’t have that by area, but it’s by site, so, you know, I think we anticipate to see the overall quality increase, well the amount of errors which at least improve quality, of work performance and improve over the next two years. But it’s something that we’re kind of waiting for, for those numbers to come back on right now.

Brad Scoggin: Yeah, that’s wild that you said something, a few minutes ago you said, that it’s just a matter of time, until organizations realize the efficacy of VR and I mean, that’s a pretty bold statement, but I guess when you’re seeing, that type of reduction in training time, when you’re seeing that type of an improvement in retention, it really, every time we do one of these, it’s just another wow for us. Like we are in the middle, I feel less and less, like I’m making an overstatement, when I say we’re in the middle of a learning revolution, because that’s not insignificant. I mean, and even, I mean, 40% on its own is significant, but then when you say, well that’s 40% of 700 or 600 hours, right? Like, that’s a big deal. Like Will said earlier, a lot of our listeners are moving from the pilot to scale. Could you share just some of the pain points that you had to work through, as you went from pilot to scale and anything you can share about what scale looks like, for you guys today or in the future?

Nick Hockley: Pilot to scale, you know, the kind of the big difference in pilot to scale, is working with vendors and you know, a third party being in between you yourself, having kind of full control over everything, versus, you know, being, there’s a different model of working, when you’re working with a vendor, to create what you’re doing, versus working with a team full of Pfizer colleagues or a group full of internal colleagues and there’s just inherently a different dynamic there. And the pain points would be, you know, for lack of a better term, like you’re kind of working on the vendor timeline, when you enter that agreement, to build that proof of concept, to build that whatever you’re doing, and you kind of lock into a high-level scope, of what you’re gonna accomplish in the SOW. But most times when you’re building these things, things come up maybe a different direction or maybe a different, maybe there’s a step, an extra hand washing or an extra cleaning or something that wasn’t accounted for, in the beginning of it and like, instead of having to kind of synthesize that, down to a vendor every time that comes up, you’re working with, you’re having a colleague to colleague interaction and it’s you know, we work in a scaled, agile framework methodology. So it’s as easy as creating a couple user stories and getting it into our developers’ cues, to make those changes versus having to have, kind of a larger discussion that, you know, is gonna have to go to on the vendor’s side, you know, to make those changes and that always comes with, well, how big’s the change, how much that’s gonna increase the timeline, you know, this can require more resources, et cetera. You know, and that proved to be frustrating, on the pilot side, so by having more control, on bringing that development in-house, once we started to really scale up and build these internally, that was an immediate relief that I saw and just made I would say the overall quality of, we are producing better as well too. Because I think the reality is when you start off, these proof of concepts is you can go in and then any XR technology for the most part, unless it’s very cut and dry or you’re making it like an infographic or something like that, like you’re gonna go in with an idea and you’re gonna be halfway through it and you’re gonna realize something, that maybe you didn’t think of in the beginning, whether it’s being able to manipulate, a certain piece of equipment, a certain way with a controller or not or maybe needing to add an animation, to actually account for that or maybe the procedure, the SOP missed a step, you know, and you need to account for that and or there’s an opportunity for innovation, you know and adding some type of hand tracking capability, to it that maybe you didn’t think of in the beginning. And it’s best to go into them, I think with the option to explore those areas and make those adjustments, versus having to stick to, you’re gonna unlock more value, being able to innovate in those phases, versus having to stick to a, you know what was agreed upon in an SOP. And that was the frustrating part in the pilot phase, because yeah, there’s just, it’s just that dynamic that’s tough. And, you know, scaling up really for us, just looks like bringing, you know, user experience, design, interface design, storyboarding, asset creation, and uni-development in-house, which was, it took some time to get the right people in place and to get the structure working in a scaled agile format. It’s all it was, you know, there wasn’t, you know, it’s not a perfect fit and all the right scenario, you know, in the best case scenarios, but, you know once it’s in place it works. And then you get to be a bit more specific, around the business cases that you’re gonna work on, that are gonna unlock the highest amount of value, versus just kind of trying to fit, into the mold of a proof of concept, that maybe was just given to you, because that was the only option, right? You’re able to kind of be a bit more specific, on what you’re gonna work on, because you own that kind of end-to-end process, you’re in the more of the scale phase and you know, just the general awareness is being built, you know, and what we’ve done is kind of create a central channel, I guess throughout the organization where, you know, even outside of digital organizations, are coming to us with questions. And I guess that’s another point I could point, I could touch on is like, you know, it’s really valuable just having pretty standardized, I want to say pitch deck, but informational deck about like, here’s the XR industry, here’s the projected revenue between now and 2030, you know, these are examples of VR trainings like you know, this kind of breaking it down and in layman’s terms for somebody that’s brand new to and having those conversations, with as many people as you can. And that also starts to change, the dialogue internally as well. And that will come back as we’re seeing, with different use cases and different ideas and different opportunities, as people generally get more involved and have a bigger understanding of it, all at the same time, while the overall industry, is kind of also making bigger steps and increasing its marketing and general awareness of what’s to come as well, so yeah.

Brad Scoggin: Definitely. I think that’s a great point. I think it’s something that, I mean, it’s something we are doing all the time, it’s ongoing education from investors to partners and I mean, the stats you’ve shared so far, those are the types of stats that are so helpful for people. And I think it’s sometimes something we forget, that there is for better or worse, where there is kind of this ongoing selling, that we’re all doing in XR, but thankfully, I mean, there is a lot of really good data, there’s a lot of really interesting effective use cases. I think it’s also very interesting that part of the way that you solved some of the challenges of going from pilot to scale, has been to bring things in-house. So a specific question on that, I mean, a lot of the customers we talk to, a lot of companies we talk to, are having that specific discussion, specifically on device management. Do they use their existing in-house device management? Do they go out of house for something more specialized? What are your thoughts there?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, there’s a lot. I mean, it’s tricky right now with device management, you know, with every company’s gonna be different. Every company’s gonna have a different standard. Every company’s gonna use a different device management platform. You know, I could speak on our end and you know, Android is tough for us, right? And from a device management perspective, you know, managing and being able to distribute, the content you’re creating is key and is really important to have that aspect of it secured and in place and have a solution that is stable and that is, you’re able to quickly get a new version or a new build out to your stakeholders and your end users as efficiently as possible. And something that I think Arbor does a great job at. You know, it’s kind of like a two, there’s kinda like two parts, there’s like the security side of it, like, you know, standard MDM, can I put a device, you know, on the network, et cetera, can I get all the certificates? You know, could it get down, can it be treated the same way as a company device? Can it not be? You know, that’s a whole thing, that I think the whole industry is figuring out, right now as a whole. But in terms of content, you know, and having your own MDM is pretty key, especially if you’re creating your own content, for your user base.

Brad Scoggin: Yeah, I think content is something, well just the challenges of content in VR and I mean that’s how it’s been for a long time. But file sizes in the whole, your journey that you’ve described and the need to update content quickly, the need to update content maybe, when you weren’t expecting to, I think the content component is really significant and maybe more so than a lot of people, at the outset realize.

Will Stackable: Yeah, could you just elaborate a little bit more? I’d love to hear, you said you’re creating, is it all the content in-house or is there a mix and why did you decide to go down that path versus a number of other companies, similar size or almost exclusively, working with external ISVs or app developers?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, I mean we’re using, we’re creating everything in-house, we’ve just, we’ve felt that having that control, has given us better end results, than kind of doing a hybrid model or you know, of course if it’s like, you know, a tool or something that is, you know, you can just get a 3D model of online or, you know, it’s already out there, you know, we’re not just gonna recreate everything from scratch, but owning all of the content, has provided to be has given us better end results, versus, you know, a partnered approach so far, doesn’t mean that, you know, it’s off the table in the future, I think we partner where it makes sense, you know, we’re partnered a few great partners, that are basically enabling, our overall development pipeline, right? Like there’s, you look, you think in terms of the development pipeline and creating the content, there’s a lot of different areas from softwares, that are creating the models and the environments, to the actual experience like in Unity or Unreal, and then version controlling and then MDM and then, you know, key networking plugins, to enable your applications and you know, there are a lot of moving pieces and we’re not going to build all of those in-house. We’re gonna partner where it makes sense. But the content creation is something that I think we’ve gone to doing fully in-house and it’s worked for us. You know, I think it’s probably a model, that I think some companies will have to go on a journey, to figure out based on their needs, if it’s gonna make more sense for them or not and when they’re gonna make that decision. You know, I think, you know, if what you’re creating is very specific and really unique, it’s gonna be better for you, to probably just do it and have the full control, versus, you know, trying to synthesize that, to a third party that’s also just gonna have to, get brought up to speed on everything, you’re doing anyway, so it’s, yeah.

Will Stackable: It sounds like your team sees this as a technology layer, that you’re integrating for the long haul, it’s not just something you’re bolting on, but this is a core part of training and manufacturing for you guys going forward. I’m curious, I’ve got one more kind of, maybe this is a hot take and if you don’t have one, it’s fine, but headsets, big topic, everyone has their own opinion. Do you have a perspective on yeah, what to think about when you’re looking at headsets?

Nick Hockley: Yeah, that was a big thing in the proof of concept phase. You know, I’m not gonna say, I have an allegiance with one brand or another, but the biggest thing for me is, if they’re standalone or not really, I guess that’s a good point to touch on, the scale side of things, you know, some of the proof of concepts we were doing, were working with headsets that had to be tethered, to a gaming computer and getting everything set up, with sensors and that proves to be a real bottleneck, not only on the scalability side but also on the end user side as well. VR is already new enough for a lot of people. And then throwing in a new kind of process or hardware configuration, that is cumbersome as well on top of it is just gonna lead to even less adoption of the technology in the long run. So, you know, my biggest thing I would say, is if you’re looking to really start to scale and get it in front of as many users as possible, trying to do as much as you can, with a standalone headset, you know, of course, there’s gonna be some use cases, that really need a tethered option but. People are very opinionated, from what I’ve seen there, you know, I’ve experienced all the newer ones that have come out so far. And I think that they’re all kind of relatively, right at the same spot, you know, I think that’s as an industry, there’s not one that’s like, oh, this is make or break, but that’s my opinion.

Brad Scoggin: Okay, so last question. This is kind of a future question. It’s 10 years from now we’re looking back, what surprises us?

Nick Hockley: The amount of jobs that might be in virtual worlds, amount of commerce maybe that’s occurring in virtual worlds. And different types of virtual platforms and communities and.

Brad Scoggin: So wait, is that a good surprise or a bad surprise?

Nick Hockley: I think they’re good surprises. I mean, you know, I think I don’t know that, don’t quote me on the statistic, but you know, there’s some that’s around like, you know, 50% of the jobs that are gonna be available in the next 10 years aren’t even made yet, right? Like, or might be even a bigger figure than that, right? And I think, you know, we’re at a real foundational stage right now at AWE, I forget who I was, who presented this, but what they were talking about was like a keynote on the Metaverse. And by the way, I’m glad we managed to go, the whole time without.

Brad Scoggin: You brought it in.

Nick Hockley: Mentioning the Metaverse until now. But the whole topic was, you know, she’s like, I don’t look at the Metaverse as a technology. It’s like, I look at it like we’re entering, like a Metaverse age, right? And it’s like what we’re doing all these conversations, all the figuring out we’re doing right now, is building kind of like the foundations for it right now. And it’s not gonna just be like one single technology. It’s gonna be this age of time, that is gonna, I think unlock, a lot of different ways of working, a lot of different ways of connecting, training and just value in areas that we might not even be able to predict right now, you know? And I think that’s just gonna come with the curve and the adoption over the next 10 years. We’ll see, I have a big bull prediction. I always say that my manager’s probably tired of hearing me say this, but I predict that companies and enterprises will have, just like an internet, they’ll have their own type of Metaverse platform.

Will Stackable: Interesting, I like that take. So a world of corporate Metaverses.

Nick Hockley: Yeah, I mean it’s gonna have to be a, you know, a walled garden, you know whatever that standard ends up looking like.

Will Stackable: So instead of hanging out on the Slack water cooler channel, you’ll jump into some kind of VR water cooler space and.

Nick Hockley: Yeah, you could, you know, companies will have their own spaces and their own environments and you could do product showcases, team events, a one-on-one, you know, a training, whatever. I think it’s gonna unlock a lot of different potentials, but yeah, that’s my take on that. I also just wanna say like, I think the whole industry like is, like we’re all in this together, I would say, you know, like we’re all kind of one in a sense and like moving this forward and like everyone, you know, from an MDM to a content creator to, you know, an enthusiast to, you know, the training lead at a manufacturing site, all is connected and kind of moving us forward, into like a more connected and I think just like a more immersive, way of working and a way of connecting and through in the workplace, you know, and I’ve talked to, a lot of different companies and you know, what it all kind of comes down to is, everyone is still like figuring it out. You know, not anyone is like, oh, this is exactly what you have to do, you know, you got LMS, you need this content creation, you do this, blah, blah, blah. You know I think people are figuring out, bits and pieces of it and we’re taking it as far as it can go right now, I would say and it’s important to have forums and channels and communications that like this, that we can talk about it and, you know, push kind of not push the agenda, but just be able to share and you know, really if there’s success in one area, it’s gonna lead to success in another area or at least show somebody the way that, how to be successful, I guess.

Will Stackable: Well said, okay. I’ve gotta ask you one more and just give you a quick answer, but something we talk about a lot is our why at Arbor is, we believe VR at its best is a tool that actually gives us our time back, not an avenue for more distraction. And I’m curious for you, why is VR important to you personally? And I’ll just tee you up that, when you said saving hundreds of hours with training, I immediately thought that’s it, right? 700 hours before you get somebody on the line, versus 400 that somebody who doesn’t have to spend those hours, you know, that they now can get in, be effective and do their job.

Nick Hockley: Yeah, that’s definitely a large aspect of it. And I think even like more broadly speaking, it’s like figuring out, you know, I don’t think the vision for anybody, A, I feel like there’s like an ethical component, that’s really important to me and like as we move into this space, I think we need leaders and we need people, talking about it right now that, you know, all agree that the vision isn’t for us to be, in virtual reality eight hours a day, right? Like, that’s not realistic for anybody and probably not great, for the overall whole of humanity either, you know, but finding out where virtual reality, fits in the societal and business worlds, consumer and enterprise worlds, where when you go into VR, you’re doing something in there, that is enhancing what you’re doing when you’re coming out. Like it’s enhancing it’s not, you’re not just going in there because you have to, you’re going in there because when you come out, you’re gonna re-emerge into your physical world and your job and whatever you’re doing, with a better sense of awareness, a better sense of purpose, feeling more connected to your, whatever you’re doing at work. And, you know, there’s probably a whole laundry list there, but I’m running outta steam. And that’s really the way I look at it, is like how do you build experiences that, when you, that are gonna add to your physical reality, you know, like, and that you could take away from, that’s something that you could take away from, that’s just gonna benefit the overall quality of your work and the overall quality of your life, right? As opposed to just doing it to do it and maybe.

Brad Scoggin: Yeah, no, I love that. I think something we say is yeah, it’s a tool. When a tool does, a tool is something we use, that helps us be more effective in our real life. So I think that’s well said, so.

Nick Hockley: If you lose sight of that, it’s like, yeah, you can’t lose sight of that.

Brad Scoggin: Right.

Nick Hockley: It’s easy to do.

Brad Scoggin: Yes, it is, it is. It’s a slippery slope. Well, Nick, this has been great. We really appreciate you sitting down with us today and look forward to chatting again soon.

Nick Hockley: Absolutely, thank you so much for having me, guys. Looking forward to the next time.

Brad Scoggin: Man, this is exactly why we started ArborXR, with the idea that VR is a tool that should get people their time back, rather than an escape, that just sucks more of our lives away.

Will Stackable: I know the 700 hours down to 400 just blew my mind. It’s exciting and I think and it’s what we’re hearing over and over again, but companies are seeing these kinds of real world results and the future is bright.

Brad Scoggin: Well, thank you so much for joining us today. Please don’t forget to subscribe, wherever you listen to podcasts and we’ll see you next time.

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