PwC has developed a virtual reality (VR) experience for its clients, allowing them to explore and better understand the range of potential future disruptions that could impact their organisation.
More than 100 people have been guided through the experience already as part of its pilot phase, including clients in banking, transport, local government and the public sector.
Participants use VR to spot 20 potential disruptions around them in a future city environment and collectively rate their credibility and impact.
The disruptions include emerging technologies such as megadrones, robotics and synthetic biology, as well as non-technology megatrends such as social and climate change.
The experience, which is the first known example of VR being used as a storytelling tool for businesses to engage with the future, was built with immersive content studio REWIND.
It is being used by PwC’s newly launched disruption consulting team, led by partner Leo Johnson, as part of workshops helping organisations to future-proof their business strategies.
“VR is a unique medium to tell the story of disruption, allowing our clients to experience the potential impact first-hand and bring their challenges to life in a much more immersive way,” said PwC VR lead Jeremy Dalton.
“It enables far more meaningful conversations about the risks faced by each organisation as a result.
“This tool demonstrates there is far more to VR than gaming – it’s a technology with huge potential across a whole host of sectors, including professional services, with its power to engage people in a new way.”
Leo Johnson, disruption lead partner at PwC, said: “Organisations are facing so many potential disruptions today – not only from technological advances, but from the collision of broader megatrends, from ageing populations to income inequality.
“We’ve established a new team specialising in disruption to help our clients stay one step ahead of these risks and build future-proofed strategies.
“The challenge is to map out the potential disruptions an organisation could face, separate out the reality from the hype and then look at strategies to transform risk into opportunity.
“The value of the VR tool is that it brings the future into the present and allows our clients a first-hand glimpse of how exponential technologies will start to transform the business landscape.”