Crayon virtual reality summit connects IT leaders worldwide
Crayon, a digital transformation leader, became one of the early adopters to the new trend of using virtual reality to conduct large executive meetings across numerous countries.
More than 50 Crayon leaders from around the world participated in a two-day session where they discussed the company’s growth strategy for 2021.
The attendees met in a customized, virtual environment for plenary sessions and smaller, break-out rooms where they had presentations, collaborated on whiteboards, and even high-fived each other like in the real world.
All of our previous annual leadership summits have been in person, but in these changing times we have to adapt, and we wanted to take it one step beyond the usual online meeting,” said CEO Torgrim Takle. “Virtual reality has been in gaming for many years now and it’s about time for businesses to be innovative and use the same tools to improve productivity and stay connected.”
Crayon Chief Technology Officer Mattias Ödlund oversaw the innovative summit that included various venues ranging from Nordic mountains to cityscapes, theater-like screens, and lounges equipped with cocktails, snacks, and music.
"We knew that having a virtual reality event would be a memorable experience where we could showcase the power of technology to keep leadership teams connected,” Ödlund said. “This way people can have a regular workday at their desk, except they can also strategize ‘in person’ with people across the globe."
Weeks before the meeting Crayon began to distribute Oculus for Business virtual reality headsets to the various executives, allowing them to create their own avatars, test out the equipment, and get ready for the event.
For the event, Crayon teamed up with Workplace from Facebook for Oculus headsets, Spatial as a VR platform provider, and M2 Studios to help build the customized experience.
“Naturally we had to make some technology investments, and engage with industry experts to ensure the overall experience, but it’s nothing in comparison to flight and hotel costs or wasting time in airports,” Ödlund said. Not to mention it’s more environmentally friendly to meet in a virtual space.”
It was also more budget-friendly as this year’s virtual summit was about one-third of the cost of the usual, in-person summit.
“We are increasingly turning to innovation to adjust to the new normal,” said Chief Service & Solutions Officer Melissa Mulholland. “Being able to use the Oculus while having strategic discussions was a fun and effective way to engage with others while pushing the boundaries of virtual collaboration.”
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Crayon helps customers build the commercial and technical foundation for a successful digital transformation journey through a reliable services framework allowing our customers to right-size and optimize their IT estates to unlock technology’s potential and innovation. Headquartered in Oslo, Norway, Crayon has over 1600 employees across approximately 50 locations worldwide.