Soon Women Can Try Negotiating for Better Pay in Virtual Reality

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A still from the simulation.
A still from the simulation.Photo: Courtesy of Variable Labs

The long-fought battle to get women equal pay for equal work may seem like it’ll never end, but at least one thing’s for sure: We’ll never stop trying new ways to tackle it! In a development that none of us — or perhaps all of us — could have seen coming, there will soon be a way to try negotiating for better pay in virtual reality. Whatever works!

As part of the White House’s push to achieve equal pay in the foreseeable future, seven new apps were designed by tech companies and programmers over the course of a two-month hackathon. One of the programs developed was a negotiation simulator that a user can experience in virtual reality. The WSJ reports:

Variable Labs, of Oakland, Calif, developed the negotiation simulator. The app for a Samsung Gear VR device intends to help users practice negotiation techniques and improve soft skills in an interview setting. A proof of concept will be presented Tuesday.

“The environment is immersive,” said Variable co-founder Mario de la Vega. “It’s like being in the room with the interviewer. It allows the opportunity to rehearse, and through practice and rehearsal, you build confidence.”

The virtual-reality simulation joins several new apps unveiled today that will use the Commerce Department’s recently unlocked data on the gender pay gap in the U.S. to get women the pay they deserve. Welcome to the future, we guess?