The global leader in package delivery will soon be using virtual reality to train its future drivers.
UPS doesn’t joke around when it comes to training its employees. After all, the United Parcel Service is the number one package transportation service in the world, with over 100,000 UPS vehicles on the road at any given time. So when it comes to making sure well-trained drivers are constantly behind the wheel of one of their many, many trucks, the company has had to adapt in order to fill the constantly growing need of their quality service.
It’s precisely this reason that the company has announced the integration of virtual reality simulations into their US training curriculum. Starting this September the company will provide nine of its UPS Integrad training facilities spread across the United States with their own HTC Vive headset with custom controls. The new training program, designed by UPS IT experts, teaches trainees how to properly detect and avoid common road hazards they’ll likely face while out on the field by replicating the experience of driving an actual delivery vehicle.
“Virtual Reality offers a big technological leap in the realm of driver safety training,” explains Juan Perez, UPS chief information and engineering officer in an official release made by Vive. “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.”
This new system will replace the previous driving exercises in which trainees were instructed on road hazards via a simple touchscreen devices. UPS joins a small selection of other major entities currently using virtual reality for training purposes, such as Walmart’s Black Friday simulator. As more and more companies discover how efficient and cost-effective VR can be for training employees, you can be sure to see the technology continue to replace the expensive and time-consuming methods of conventional education.
This also marks yet another step towards UPS’s primary goal of modernizing the package delivery industry. Along with VR the company has been experimenting with a variety of other technology from advanced delivery drones, to touchscreen computer systems integrated into delivery vehicles.