Feb 17, 2021

Real reconnection in virtual reality: Starmark’s 2021 company meeting

Real reconnection in virtual reality: Starmark’s 2021 company meeting
BY Jacob Edenfield

Realities | Virtual Reality

Our Agile Methodology and two weeks out of the office in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma made our Starmark team more ready than most companies for 2020’s move to all-remote work. And though our work and our workflow had never been better, the one thing that suffered was our team’s connections to one another.

At the end of 2020, we decided to surprise every Starmarker with an Oculus Quest 2 headset and an invitation to a virtual reality holiday get-together in virtual reality, using Spatial. We followed that up two months later with our all-agency company meeting in virtual reality with Engage. It was an experience that changed us all.

Here’s what we’ve learned experimenting with virtual reality

We started our experiment with VR as part of our Innovation Lab’s commitment to trying new things that could solve big business challenges for ourselves and our clients. What we’ve found is that the uses are even grander than we expected. As our President, Jacqui Hartnett, said, “You really don’t get it until you put on the headset.” Here are the big opportunities we see.

You really don’t get it until you put on the headset

Jacqui Hartnett – President, Starmark

VR connects people in a real way

Have you ever just wanted to hug your coworker, look them in the eye or get lost in an hour-long concepting session with your fellow creatives? VR removes those physical barriers in a way that Zoom and other video platforms can’t match. We’re experiencing this first-hand every day now, and it’s liberating.

VR is a productivity and focus tool

Whereas AR and MR only supplement the reality in front of you, VR can actually help you immerse in your work. We’ve been using apps like the aptly named Immersed Virtual Reality to focus on collaboration sessions and individual work. In fact, half of this article was written from within Immersed. In VR. With a real keyboard.

The possibilities for education are endless

From better immersion to more impactful experiential learning experiences, we see huge possibilities for high school and higher education in VR. We’ve written an eTip with a couple of pioneers in the space, and we plan to share a lot more on this topic.

You can truly transport people with VR

We can bring our own team together, even though we’re spread across two coasts. It’s just as easy to bring a curious visitor to a destination from the comfort of her home. Experiences in VR feel more real than a video. They stick with you. And that has huge implications for the travel industry now that millions of new headsets are making their way into homes and offices.

Let’s boldly go, together

We may be ahead of the curve on VR, but you have to trust us when we say that the view from out here is promising. If you’re curious about the role VR could play in your business, get in touch with us. We’d love to share a virtual cafe table with you and talk about where we can go together.