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The Role of AR for Business in a Post-Covid World

The Role of AR for Business in a Post-Covid World,

It’s rare for humanity to see the very nature of work change. But as stay-at-home orders were rolled out, and soon adopted as the norm for the majority of the workforce — that was the reality of 2020. Our very approach to work we previously took for granted required rapid retooling to accommodate the times. At Mira, we found workarounds for our customers, and ourselves, for traditionally in-person tasks such as meetings and walkthroughs.

Now, as restrictions ease and vaccination rates rise, coupled with a growing understanding of handling Covid-19, people expect a return to “normal.” The workplace will be at the center of this return. But what is the new normal? What remains virtual and what shifts back to being in-person? And, ultimately, how will Augmented Reality play a more expansive role in business moving forward?

The New “Normal”

As a result of the necessary isolation, the pandemic forced us to imagine ways to continue to be productive using virtual tools. Thus, it should be expected that, in our return to the office, there will be an initial overcompensation toward in-person meetings — an elastic effect as the world snaps back to in-person collaboration. I, for one, know that our team is eager for some face-to-face communication — especially those who have joined during the last year and have yet to meet the team IRL.

With that being said, every business, including us, must consider the lessons we learned during this pivotal year, and determine which cost-effective benefits should be adopted permanently. Working from home will remain a perk people care about, it becomes even more important to thoughtfully differentiate between what should be in person and what can still be accomplished remotely.

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Remote vs. In-Person

Collaboration doesn’t always require that people be in the same location. This has been proven to be true repeatedly throughout the current health crisis.

Imagine having an expert anywhere in the world that you need them without the restraints and expenditure of travel. This was a need regularly highlighted by the pandemic and it’s an easy lift for AR. One of the core functions of solution-driven AR is the ability to accomplish tasks through synchronous and asynchronous communication.

But beyond the cost savings attributable to reduced travel, there are additional benefits to going digital. For example, a connected workforce is a safer workforce as the data acquired through digital workflows can not only help streamline them but improve safety as well.

Moving Forward

Necessity is the mother of invention. — Proverb (via Plato)

One benefit we gained through our industrious response to the pandemic — it afforded us a glimpse of the future of work in practice.

As we move forward, it should become crystal clear that AR and virtual applications aren’t just ‘Covid response tools’ — they can, should, and will replace much of what was previously done in person from a worker health standpoint in addition to benefits to your company’s bottom line.

Barring the necessity of being in-person, the future is digital.

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The Role of AR for Business in a Post-Covid World was originally published in AR/VR Journey: Augmented & Virtual Reality Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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Author: Mira

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