Employees at IBM will soon be holding business meetings within the online virtual world Second Life (SL).
The computer giant is set to launch its own firewall-secured area within the Linden environment, the first to use a customised version of SL.
IBM says the move will enable colleagues to collaborate without the need for data to pass through external systems, slowing down communications and potentially compromising security.
Its staff will be able to utilise all the communications tools SL has to offer - chat, instant messaging and voice - within the realms of the IBM firewall, while being able to access information in the wider SL environment.
Both companies want to explore the possibilities of companies being able to create their own virtual worlds more effectively.
Linden Lab's vice president of business affairs Ginsu Yoon said: "Deploying regions of the SL Grid behind IBM's firewall is a major milestone in the evolution of the Internet and will help accelerate the growth and adoption of all virtual worlds."
SL is billed by Linden Labs as a realm created by its users.
ClickAJob chief executive Yngve Traberg welcomes the move.
"It opens up a huge opportunity for both employers and job-seekers," he says.
"Everyone is networked, everyone can see things with the same perspective," he points out.
"Suddenly all kinds of physical challenges like office environment, available space, disabled access, working hours across time zones, remote working, job share and a whole host of others just disappear."
"It's the best answer yet to our accelerating skills shortage," he concludes.