ET Bureau: How is Aggreko using augmented reality (AR) to reinvent its global workforce training?
David Nedohin: Aggreko is always looking for new ways to build expertise across the company’s workforce, deploying Aggreko products. Given the current limitations to travel with the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for delivering digital training knowledge has gone from a “nice to have” to ‘mission-critical’ from an operational standpoint. Aggreko built an AR training program using the Scope AR WorkLink platform to create a virtual, full-sized model of its 1600 cfm diesel compressor – a massive piece of equipment that weighs 12 tons and is 20 feet long. As part of the immersive training experience, employees are able to do a full walk-around of the compressor in order to get familiar with controls, key features, and components.
The AR training experience also shows how to turn on or decommission the equipment, as well as how to conduct essential maintenance procedures like changing out fuel and oil filters. In order to make the training process even more seamless, Aggreko is using devices their workforce already carries – like smartphones and tablets – to deliver the experience to employees, so no additional hardware investment is needed. This means training is now available wherever their workers are so they can continue to get the knowledge they need to do their best work.
ET Bureau: How does the Scope AR WorkLink platform function?
David Nedohin: Scope AR’s WorkLink is an integrated augmented reality (AR) platform that provides more effective and efficient knowledge-sharing to conduct complex remote tasks, employee training, product, and equipment assembly, maintenance, and repair, field and customer support, and more.
It is the industry’s only AR knowledge platform to offer real-time remote support, access to AR work instructions, and the ability to record sessions simultaneously in one application. With this, workers can now easily capture, retain, and share knowledge like never before.
ET Bureau: With in-person workforce training being halted amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, how has your platform helped organizations?
David Nedohin: While our reality has us working apart, AR technology has the ability to bring us together. Companies like Aggreko are using AR to transform their global workforce training, so employees are now able to get an immersive, digital training experience on life sized, full-scale models of equipment.
Other companies, some major players in the global food and drink industry, are using the remote assistance functionality of Scope AR’s WorkLink platform to maintain factory floor operations and conduct equipment maintenance and repairs. Since experts are no longer able to travel on-site to facilities, they’re instead guiding factory floor workers through essential equipment repair and maintenance procedures remotely via live, AR-enabled video calls. This is preventing costly downtime and ensuring procedures are done correctly by workers who may have little to no prior training on a certain task.
ET Bureau: What are the most valuable takeaways for any global organization trying to maintain their training programs during these challenging times?
David Nedohin: Uncertain times like these spur innovation in using new technologies and
how we do our work to keep things moving forward. Just as Aggreko is transforming its workforce training, we undoubtedly will see other businesses figuring out new ways to leverage technology to help navigate these volatile times.
Some key takeaways to remember are:
AR reinvents and optimizes an essential process- Typically, companies must fly employees to training centers or HQs around the globe to get face-to-face training. This model is costly and inefficient. AR can bring distance learning to the workforce, eliminating the need for travel.
AR helps unlock tangible ROI- As mentioned above, the cost of shipping equipment and flying employees to centralized locations for training can be costly and inefficient. Imagine the savings that can be realized by cutting those expenses while still being able to deliver rich, intuitive digital training content to ensure an organization’s workforce never stops learning.
Companies can help speed innovation across their business- We’ve heard from a number of customers that while they’ve kicked around the idea of implementing AR into their workforce training prior to COVID-19, it had always been more of a nice to have, not a necessity. But the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic have definitely accelerated this process for many companies. With AR, companies can quickly build processes and create content to distribute worldwide so that employees can continue to receive the training and knowledge they need to deliver an optimal experience to their customers.
David Nedohin, co-founder and Chief Customer Officer of Scope AR, brings more than 20 years of experience in business development and supporting customers at all stages of the customer journey to drive the company’s vision to revolutionize the world of industrial training, maintenance and field support with AR technology. In this role, David manages key relationships with industry partners and works with some of the world’s leading global companies, including Lockheed Martin, Unilever, and Aggreko, among others.