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December 18, 2017 -
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As companies and organizations continue to expand globally, technology allows workers to collaborate and share information in real-time, even if they’re not physically together. With 43 percent of Americans working remotely at least some of the time, according to an article in The Atlantic, Augmented reality (AR), which puts digital representations of objects into your physical space, could be the key to changing how we think about work. AR has quickly evolved from a laboratory experiment to a staple in pop culture, entertainment, and media, and 67 percent of organizations are considering incorporating it into their procedures. Meanwhile, for companies, it could allow them to connect with rare, specialized expertise instantly, no matter where they are based. And it could completely change standard office processes and interactions. Training employees for new roles could also be made easier with augmented reality. In one case study, a Siemens employee learned how to assemble a gas burner—a process that usually takes about a day—in just 45 minutes. During his keynote address at Facebook’s F8 developers conference, CEO Mark Zuckerberg spoke about a virtual reality meeting space the company developed, called Facebook Spaces. “This virtual reality experience is going to give you a taste of what it’s like to have this real sense of presence with your friends, no matter where they are in the world, and to start interacting with all kinds of digital objects on the road to fully augmented reality,” said Zuckerberg. Beyond just training lone employees, augmented reality could play an important role in team-oriented, high-stakes occupations—like teaching firefighters to work together under pressure, bandmates being able to practice together even if they’re miles apart, or high-level executives being able to really feel connected and collaborative in the event of a PR crisis that must be addressed. This Quick Read was submitted by Ryan Berlin, managing editor of Facility Maintenance Decisions, email@example.com.