How can you increase productivity when you’re short of manpower?
EVERYTHING about augmented reality😉 Following one of our newsletters, in part about augmented reality, we’ve had lots of questions, comments, appreciation and excitement. So we decided to get our hands dirty today to give you more details on the subject!

1. Augmented reality in a nutshell (definition)

This futuristic-looking technology is just around the corner. It consists in superimposing virtual and reality together, in an AR (augmented reality) headset or a telescope. We have a telescope in which we see the reality around us, adding a virtual superimposition.

2. What do our customers think? How do they feel about it? Scierie St-Michel’s experience!

Scierie St-Michel is committed to using technology to improve its performance and productivity. Augmented reality has thus become an essential tool for the company. The company has set up training courses for its employees to help them better understand and use these technologies. Inventory and operations management are essential to the business, and the St-Michel sawmill has implemented IT tools to facilitate this. Data collection and analysis are also essential to good management. The St-Michel sawmill has therefore implemented tools to ensure equipment maintenance and incident prevention. Risk management is also an essential part of the business. Human resources management is also an important element for the St-Michel sawmill, which ensures that its employees are trained in new technologies and their requirements, so augmented reality has facilitated the training of new employees. Quality management is also an important aspect of ensuring customer satisfaction. The St-Michel sawmill is committed to offering quality service and using advanced technologies to improve its performance and productivity.

Rémy Champoux,
Production Manager

3. Case study: augmented reality (Q&A) What’s your biggest irritant at your company?

Well, our biggest irritant was our high employee turnover rate and our inability to release our trainers for new employees. We found that this led to lost productivity and increased our costs due to the need to train new employees on a regular basis. This was a major challenge for our company.

What action did you take to solve your problem?

We first tried to hire more trainers to reduce the workload of our existing trainers and free up time to train new employees. However, this didn’t work, as we found that manual training was still time-consuming and required a lot of effort on the part of our trainers. Finally, we realized that a digital solution could help solve our problem, so we decided to digitize our in-house training. This enabled our new employees to follow the training at their own pace, freeing up our trainers for other important tasks. It has also significantly reduced our employee turnover rate. So augmented reality has been a great solution for us.

4. *If you missed our newsletter on this subject, here’s the part on AR (augmented reality)!

Augmented reality: a booming tool!
What is augmented reality?

This futuristic-looking technology is just around the corner. It consists in superimposing virtual and reality together, in an AR (augmented reality) headset or a telescope. We have a telescope through which we see the reality around us, adding a virtual superimposition.

What’s the difference between virtual and augmented reality?

Virtual reality doesn’t include reality. It’s only virtual (so we don’t see what’s around us), whereas with augmented reality, we see both! Both types of technology have their advantages and disadvantages. However, in a factory, AR allows you to have the headset on while walking around the factory, since reality is also present. How convenient!

Is augmented reality affordable? How many months does the return on investment represent after the purchase of a headset and a license?

Augmented reality is much more accessible and affordable than you might think. A Microsoft Hololens, for example, is an augmented reality headset that costs a few thousand dollars. That’s a far cry from the astronomical sums we were hearing about ten years ago! Then you add a license, a Microsoft account, and additional options to suit your needs. ROI (return on investment) depends on a number of factors:

How long you use the headset (is it used 2 hours a week or 35 hours?);
The actions you perform with your helmet (added value, non-added value).

Indeed, the performance of the headset will be an important factor in determining ROI. We have augmented reality projects that have achieved an ROI of 18 months. Impressive!

How can augmented reality boost your company’s productivity, while making up for the shortage of manpower?

In fact, augmented reality can be used everywhere: in particular, it will help you with your weak points. Augmented reality is very versatile. Are you experiencing any of the following difficulties within your company? :

-Taking inventory;
-Change of setup between two different types of production;
-Maintenance (preventive, corrective, predictive);
-Integration of new employees;
-Remote plant visit;
-Remote repair (telling you what to do in the event of a problem);
-Data tracking;

Augmented reality can do it all! Often, the main causes of these problems are :

-Difficulty transferring/sharing knowledge;
-Ineffective communication;
-Lack of manpower;
-High turnover;
-Lack of availability.

Augmented reality is the answer to all these difficulties. Without further commitment, augmented reality makes it possible to :

1. Reduce travel time and communication inefficiencies;
2. Make remote instructions easier to understand;
3. Reduce the company’s ecological footprint;
4. Protect corporate memory through better knowledge management;
5. Improve the profitability of remote worker assistance projects;
6. Increase synergy between team members at all levels.

Train without a trainer, generate automatic daily reports without adding any extra tasks for your employees, manage stock and inventory remotely…and much more. WOW!

Do you have doubts or questions? Want to implement augmented reality in your business? Book an appointment with one of our experts!

WE’RE THERE, on the front lines of your growth. See you soon!

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