Vice President of Information Technology, UPS
UPS (NYSE: UPS) is a global leader in logistics, offering a broad range of solutions including transporting packages and freight; facilitating international trade, and deploying advanced technology to more efficiently manage the world of business. Headquartered in Atlanta, UPS serves more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. The company can be found on the web at ups.com and its corporate blog can be found at longitudes.ups.com. To get UPS news direct, follow @UPS_News on Twitter.
UPS currently offers driver safety training at the UPS Integrad training facilities. The UPS driver trainees use applications to learn safe driving methods and learn to spot and identify road hazards using a touch screen. Although these applications provide the necessary knowledge, the user experience is limited to a 2D environment.
The UPS Integrad® Driver Safety Training uses a computer powered VR headset. The VR headset, along with the application, immerses the trainees in a 360-degree computer-generated environment and simulates the experience of driving on roads and streets. Trainees interact with the application using voice commands to identify and spot road hazards such as pedestrians and oncoming traffic.
This new training model is far more engaging and memorable than the touch screens they replace. It will enhance a student driver’s ability to recognize road hazards and react to them safely.
Feedback received from training candidates was very positive with such remarks as:
- “This device will make our new driver be more prepared.”
- “The most amazing interactive experience one could have. It is learning that not only strongly engages but also educates.”
- “Great experience having a headset on instead of a computer screen.”
- “I think this is a great tool on the cutting edge of technology and may eventually change the way we train at UPS”
- “It made learning more interactive and enjoyable which makes participation easier”
- Reduction in time to absorb hazard identification skills
- Reduction in safety defects
- Increased job satisfaction
- Decreased turnover
“Virtual Reality offers a big technological leap in the realm of driver safety training,” said Juan Perez, UPS chief information and engineering officer. “VR creates a hyper-realistic streetscape that will dazzle even the youngest of our drivers whose previous exposure to the technology was through video games.”
UPS worked in a very collaborative fashion across business units that had previously never met and was able to deliver a fantastic product that is just a stepping stone for how training at UPS will be impacted.