According to the United States Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), an average of over 20,000 natural gas leaks are reported every year from homes and buildings in the United States. Many more likely go undetected or unreported.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), in the United States, an average of over 172,000 fires happen each year due to cooking with gas appliances and over 44,000 home fires each year are caused by gas appliances, including gas water heaters, ranges and ovens, clothes dryers, and central heating systems. These fires result in an average of over 400 deaths and 1,500 injuries each year.
Appliance installers, mechanics, and gas field workers are some of the positions hard hit by the skilled labor gap. Because of this, companies need to quickly and effectively train new, often unskilled, employees to safely inspect gas appliances in order to keep themselves and the customers they are serving safe. There is no better way to do this than with virtual reality (VR).
Why VR is more effective for training unskilled labor
Accenture did a great VR study comparing VR training with video training to teach unskilled workers to learn how to install a toilet. The study revealed a 12% higher accuracy and 17% faster time to completion for the participants learning using VR. Iowa State also did a VR comparison study for teaching welding. 100% of students that were trained using VR scored higher on evaluations than those trained using other methods.
People learn best by doing. And VR is able to create immersive scenarios that feel like employees are in real homes inspecting real appliances.
Additionally, VR training allows unskilled employees a safe space to practice and work through many different scenarios so that they are better prepared to handle what they may see in the field.
VR Gas Appliance Inspection training is now available
Standard and OSHA approved Gas Appliance Inspection training already exists in virtual reality and is being used by many companies to close the skilled labor gap. The training content covers a wide range of gas appliances and many scenarios to teach new employees how to inspect appliances, test them, and proper procedures to turn off and on the gas burners.
The training effectively teaches new employees:
- How to inspect and perform a flame test on boilers, water heaters, and central heating units/furnaces.
- How to inspect and perform a thermometer test on ranges and dryers.
- The status of key categories of each appliance such as: venting, combustion scoring, and piping.
Most importantly, the training teaches employees how to recognize and document abnormal operating conditions (AOCs).
Using VR for Gas Appliance Inspection training yields big benefits
Virtual reality training can produce some incredible benefits for companies looking to quickly and effectively train new employees. And all of these benefits save money.
The key benefits in using VR for Gas Appliance Inspection training:
- Reducing the skilled labor gap – Unskilled employees enjoy using VR and learn faster. This means getting open positions filled so the company can generate more revenue.
- Training faster – Getting new employees field-ready faster means both a cost savings in training time and more revenue from billable workers.
- Keeping workers safe – Not only is VR faster for training, but it is also more effective. This means that workers are better prepared to recognize abnormal operating conditions so they can appropriately handle them. And that means both workers and customers are kept safe. Not only is that peace of mind, but it also saves money in disability and potential liability cases.
VR Gas Appliance Inspection training is the best way to give new employees a wealth of real-world experience before they ever visit a customer site. With increased pressure to fill open jobs quickly, it just makes sense to improve the training so disastrous mistakes don’t happen.
Wondering how to get started with VR training?
For learning and development leaders looking to help their company’s thrive, VR training is the answer. VR content naturally compliments existing training content to provide employees with ways to apply and practice skills needed to be successful.
Want more evidence for leadership on the cost cutting benefits of VR training? Read whitepaper here!
In our previous whitepaper we covered how to bring VR into your training program, get the step-by-step guide here!