Virtual Reality Meets Sandwiches

How Subway’s virtual reality game is finding young talent.


Virtual Reality Meets Sandwiches

Let’s face it, at some point we’ve all been sucked into a virtual game like Facebook’s Farmville or EA Game’s Sims. So how do you, as a business, capitalise on these games’ ability to hold audience attention for hours on end? You make your own virtual game based entirely around the brand. That’s what Subway’s done with their new virtual reality competition that gets participants creating their own virtual stores online.

Turning work into play

The game not only offers participants token points for playing, but it engages young entrepreneurs, giving the brand an early look at talent and offering prospects quick and free education on the brand.

Subway has also joined forces with PR company, Young and Successful Media, to roll out the Subway Global Challenge, in which hundreds of contestants around the world will be competing in an extended business simulation game. The prize is a trip to Washington, D.C and Subway’s head office to meet the company’s president, Fred DeLuca and other executives.

Finding bright young things

The organisers believe this initiative will open doors for prospective employees, whether they’re potential franchisees, in-store team members, or corporate officers. But also give basic education of running a franchise in the quick-service industry.

“They’ll learn about franchising, they’ll learn about Subway, and they’ll learn about what opportunities are out there, whether it’s about Subway or other franchises,” says chief development officer, Don Fertman.

The competition, runs for the month of March and challengers are required to design their own virtual store, monitor and drive sales, create a promotional video, and complete an online interview. In the process, contestants are taught and tested on their knowledge of the business.

“We will be watching closely to see who the five winners are, and the many others who excel at the online game. Letters of recommendation, meetings with heads of departments, and possible promotions could await those who show promise online,” says Fertman.

Forever young

Subway’s virtual game is a testament to the company’s faith in young entrepreneurs and tapping the promise that young people offer, after all, DeLuca started the chain as a 17-year-old.

“This is an opportunity for the company to say that some of the most interesting people here are young. We know there are lots of people in the world who haven’t had a chance to prove themselves yet,” says Fertman.

Tracy Lee Nicol
About the Author
Tracy-Lee Nicol is the managing editor of Franchise Zone Magazine and deputy editor of Entrepreneur Magazine. She studied her Masters degree in Art History and Visual Culture at Rhodes University and spent the next two years working and travelling in Asia. Her love of people, business and teaching is reflected in telling the stories of entrepreneurs, franchisees and franchisors, inspiring others to take the leap to being their own boss and bringing about positive change in South Africa.

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