I lead the firm's Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality (VR/AR) proposition, advising clients, and PwC internally, on the potential and benefits of VR and AR technology. This could involve building a business case for its implementation, providing guidance during the actual build of the software, or producing bespoke reports on the industry specific to our clients’ business strategy and objectives.
Every day is different and that’s what makes my job so interesting. Within the firm I could be managing the progress of one of our VR/AR projects by providing feedback on the latest developments and driving the vision forward or demonstrating VR/AR to staff, partners and/or our clients.
I regularly speak at events with the aim of educating and evangelising the potential of the technology and attend VR/AR conferences or meetups to hear from other speakers, demo new technology, and network. Lately I’ve also started to meet with government bodies to share learnings and attempt to tackle any growing issues in the industry.
If I can find a free slot in the evening, I load up my HTC Vive VR headset and assume the role of a crew member aboard the USS Aegis alongside friends. For those that are confused, I'm referring to a VR game called Star Trek: Bridge Crew.
I get to be involved in the birth (or resurrection!) of an incredibly exciting industry - one that I personally believe will be our primary system of interaction with the digital world in the future. Also, the people I meet in the industry are equally passionate which creates a strong sense of community and purpose.
I get to be involved in the birth (or resurrection!) of an incredibly exciting industry - one that I personally believe will be our primary system of interaction with the digital world in the future.
I took quite a circuitous route: I studied mathematics at university, started teaching the subject online, joined PwC as an auditor, and then moved to the business recovery division where I obtained my chartered accountancy qualification. Following that, I moved to technology consulting in an innovation role where I looked at the possibilities of a range of emerging technologies. It was there that I 'saw the light' and really dug deep into virtual reality and augmented reality, which evolved into the specialist role I have today.
Self-management and stakeholder management mainly. The former because there is limited time and a lot to do in the industry; the latter because there are still a lot of misconceptions about VR/AR - for example, most people believe that this technology is limited to only video games and entertainment which is not true as we can expect to see almost half of the revenue coming from enterprise applications.
One anecdote that has always stuck with me is when I was working on an oil refinery during a PwC business recovery project. One day, the senior manager on the project walked in and announced that it was lunch time. I told him that I had work to do - an excuse he immediately refuted by blasting back, 'There's always work to do, and there'll always be work to do - now, let's go have lunch!'. I always remember that every time I'm tempted to de-prioritise lunch or break times in favour of more work.