VR NEWS – The future of work looks bright!
When virtual reality saves time, money and CO2
Climate change requires rethinking; the corona crisis acts as an “accelerator”. In times when it is not only unsustainable to fly around the globe to collaborate on projects, but simply impossible due to border closures and new hygiene and social distancing rules. Collaborative work in a virtual space provides relief across the board: hundreds of hours of travel time are saved per year, hundreds of thousands of kilograms of CO2 are not emitted, elaborate prototypes are not produced and transported and project times are drastically reduced!
Designers in mechanical and plant engineering must communicate, present, coordinate and monitor – on time and across national borders, continents and language barriers. The smallest mistakes in coordination can grow into unaffordable problems and bring entire project processes to a standstill. A good part of the valuable working time of engineers is wasted on the journey from A to B. WeAre Rooms puts each A with each B and each potential C, D and E in a virtual room. A meeting can take place completely without business trips, even without leaving the office or home office – with any number of participants from anywhere in the world.
The respective project is not only in front of the eyes of each project participant, but directly in their hands – and can be walked through and experienced live and virtually. Complex CAD and construction drawings are quickly virtualized via drag-and-drop or a direct database connection into three-dimensional objects that can be freely presented, dismantled and edited together. The tool is intuitive to use. After just a short amount of time with the VR headsets and controllers, you interact intuitively with the virtual environment. Machines and buildings become comprehensible and accessible before they are even built; the costly production of prototypes is no longer necessary. All this saves time, money and of course – by avoiding business trips – CO2, and does so significantly!
The following savings can be calculated using a concrete customer example from WeAre:
An internationally active mechanical engineering company replaces 25 percent of the in-person meetings for two project teams with virtual reality. Both teams consist of five members, one working on a national project and one on an international project.
The national team has 4 travel days per month with 3 hours each for arrival and departure. The international team travels to Shanghai four times a year for 5 days – from door to door it takes about 20 hours.
The total travel time saved in this way is 560 hours, 360 hours nationally, 200 internationally. At an hourly rate of around 60 euros for an engineer, this saves the company and its customers 33,600 euros. On top of this, employee satisfaction increases as stressful business trips are partly eliminated, which is beneficial to a healthy work-life balance.
In times of climate change and the required large-scale rethinking, however, it is not only essential to save time, it is also a question of emitting as little CO2 as possible in the future. The company’s small measure alone saves 27 tons of CO2 from unused air travel and almost 11.5 tons of CO2 from untraveled kilometers in the home country.
However, there are many more advantages for the mechanical engineering company. For example, prototypes no longer need to be physically built. WeAre Rooms uses CAD drawings to create virtual models that are then interactively available anywhere in the world, eliminating the need to send complex, expensive, insured models.
However, the project time is not only drastically shortened by the elimination of time-consuming prototype productions: the three-dimensionality of the plans significantly accelerates the understanding and thus the coordination processes compared to two-dimensional media and conventional TeamViewer conferences. Appointments with all important project participants are always a logistical masterpiece. With project durations of over one year, appointments have to be coordinated, blocked, trips booked, and everything has to be reconciled in advance. For the example customer, this saves up to 3.5 weeks per project.
Impressive figures with a lot of potential; after all, only 25 percent of meetings have so far been moved to virtual space.
WeAre GmbH was founded in 2017 by Maximilian Noelle, Co-Founder and CEO, and Marvin Tekautschitz, Co-Founder and COO. The company, which is based in Berlin and Bochum, is developing a VR conference system that enables industrial companies to streamline their engineering communication processes, thereby reducing error rates and accelerating their time-to-market. WeAre is the communication basis for decentralized exchange in engineering and is explicitly geared towards engineers as a collaboration solution. In a virtual conference room, all common CAD formats and files can be visualized without any preparations in order to present them interactively and immersive to customers and colleagues afterwards. WeAre is thus the first company to enable all those involved in the development process to be actively involved across the board. Thanks to innovative technology, WeAre’s VR solution helps to save opportunity costs and strengthen ties with customers and stakeholders. The company currently employs 15 people at its locations in Berlin and Bochum.