With the metaverse touted as the next iteration of the internet, companies recognise the need to build their workforce competencies to augment business opportunities. While 7 in 10 business leaders (68%) say that it is important for their company to adopt metaverse to remain competitive, only 6% have adopted the metaverse and 52% are unsure or do not foresee adopting metaverse-related technology.
To embrace metaverse, half of business leaders (51%) reveal that their company needs to gain the relevant knowledge and expertise. In fact, 9 in 10 (89%) of business leaders are open to sending their employees for skills training-related to the metaverse.
These are some of the key findings from the recently launched Industry Insights Report 2023 on Metaverse, which aims to investigate the current landscape and businesses’ readiness for the metaverse, including their awareness and challenges faced. Based on a survey of 200 business leaders, and interviews with industry practitioners and experts from NTUC LearningHub (NTUC LHUB), the report offers insights into the in-demand skills and employee training areas that business leaders are keen to explore.
Despite the key benefits business leaders resonate with such as finding new ways to engage customers (50%), enhancing customer service (44%), and finding new business opportunities (43%), over a third (36%) of them voice that they are not confident of their company’s readiness for a future in the metaverse. Privacy and security concerns (52%), high technology costs (51%), and uncertainty about whether metaverse will bear return on investments (47%), are the top concerns among business leaders in adopting the metaverse.
Nonetheless, three in five (62%) business leaders are confident in their workforce’s ability to adapt to the metaverse. More than half (54%) of business leaders say metaverse-related skills are required across different roles and departments in their organisation, with cloud computing (53%), data analytics and Artificial Intelligence (51%), and Internet of Things (43%), emerging as the top metaverse-related technologies business leaders are keen to adopt in the next two years.
As business leaders prepare their employees for the adoption of metaverse, they prefer to enrol their employees in courses under government supported training institutions (53%), followed by on-the-job training (51%), and sponsorship via micro-credentials or industry certifications (44%).
Commenting on the findings, Tay Ee Learn, Chief Sector Skills Officer at NTUC LearningHub, says, “The metaverse yields a variety of economic benefits for companies, and from the survey, it is encouraging to know that business leaders are looking forward to not just riding on this wave, but investing in the next revolution through skills training. Developing an existing pool of employees with the relevant skills will help businesses effectively utilise the capabilities of the metaverse. With high technology cost being one of the top barriers to metaverse adoption, companies should tap on fundings available for training, such as those provided by training providers like NTUC LearningHub, which was recently approved by SkillsFuture Singapore as a Continuing Education and Training Centre for the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector. As a start for metaverse to gain wider awareness, companies can also consider introducing it to their employees by using it as a platform to convene, socialise, and work, before embarking on more serious work-related usage.”