Hiring for Virtual- and Augmented-Reality Jobs

Oculus Rift

Over the next few years, a horde of tech firms will begin pushing out augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) devices, ranging from Facebook’s Oculus Rift (a virtual-reality headset that immerses players in virtual worlds) to Microsoft’s HoloLens (which overlays digital holograms on the user’s environment, viewable only through a special augmented-reality headset).

If the technology takes off (as some pundits expect), more firms will launch augmented-reality and virtual-reality projects, spiking the demand for professionals who specialize in building the underlying hardware and software. That means recruiters will need to be on the lookout for candidates who have the right mix of skills to work in AR and VR.

Skills necessary to AR may include:

  • 3D Modeling
  • Computer Vision
  • Marker Detection
  • Mobile Programming (such as iOS and Android)
  • Low-Level Programming-Language Knowledge (C#, C++, etc.)
  • Knowledge of Relevant SDKs (HoloLens, etc.)

For virtual-reality development, things are a little bit more fragmented; in addition to dedicated hardware such as Oculus Rift, companies such as Samsung and Google have begun experimenting with platforms such as Cardboard, in which the user’s smartphone (inserted into a headset) acts as the screen.

When it comes to dedicated headsets such as Oculus, experts tend to recommend skills such as:

  • Low-Level Programming-Language Knowledge (C#, C++, etc.)
  • Familiarity with Underlying Hardware
  • Experience with Unity and Unreal Engines
  • Experience with VR SDKs

For Cardboard and other VR platforms that are smartphone-centric, developers will need to know:

  • Experience with Relevant SDKs
  • Mobile Programming (iOS and Android)

Developers and tech pros with the above skills in abundance will probably do well on a company’s augmented- or virtual-reality team. Given the nascent state of the segment, recruiters would also do well to search for candidates who display a lot of creativity and the ability to problem-solve, as figuring out some of the technology’s issues will require a great deal of both.

Image Credit: Facebook/Oculus

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