When it comes to training employees, businesses are often faced with the decision of whether or not they should outsource their learning and development to an external organisation.
The truth is, there is not a “black and white” decision where one option is clearly better than the other.
However, by weighing their options carefully and understanding the pros and cons of both options, business owners can make an informed decision.
Before we present the pros and cons of in-house and outsourced corporate training, there is another consideration to be made:
The Grey Area Of In-House VS. Outsourced Training
In most real-world cases, a combination of outsourced and in-house training functions are best to drive effectiveness.
For instance, a business may outsource the design and development of their training material but keep the actual training in-house. Similarly, other businesses may consider developing their own training assets and hiring freelance instructors to deliver training at their organisation.
With that in mind, let’s look at the different aspects of your corporate training in detail, and determine which ones to outsource.
eLearning is fast becoming an integral part of the corporate training model. In this matter, businesses are often faced with the choice of licencing a learning management system or building their own.
Let’s look at the pros and cons of both cases:
Pros of building your own LMS:
- Can be customised to the unique needs of your organisation
- Can be implemented to supplement all future training needs
- Can be offered as a product to other organisations looking for learning management systems
Cons of building your own LMS
- Can prove to be a costly undertaking
- Often requires specific technical expertise
- Unexpected maintenance and support costs can often arise
Pros of using a third-party LMS
- Easy integration
- Can be operated with little technical expertise
- Often cheaper than developing a custom LMS
Cons of using a third-party LMS
- Lack of personalisation
- Hidden costs of additional integrations
Content curation is one of the most resource and time consuming aspects of corporate training. However, it is also one of the most crucial aspects. Let’s look at the pros and cons of outsourcing training content curation:
Pros of outsourcing content curation
- Cost-effective access to subject matter experts
- Reduced time of delivery and implementation
- Availability of resources for core business functions
Cons of outsourcing content curation
- If the content is not up to the mark, revisions may result in a delay in implementation
- Content customisation comes with an additional charge
- Content customisation may require resource allocation from your organisation
Keeping content curation under your direct control also comes with certain pros and cons:
Pros of developing your own training content
- Content can be easily aligned with business needs and goals
- Content can be personalised
- Cost-effective with self-hosted and cloud-based authoring tools
Cons of developing your own training content
- Lack of subject matter experts
- Lack of technical skills needed to operate self-hosted or cloud eLearning authoring tools
Instructor-led sessions are perhaps the most commonly outsourced function of corporate training. Here are the pros and cons of doing the same:
Pros of outsourcing classroom training
- Access to experienced instructors without having to hire one
- Consistent and effective training methods
- Many trainers use their own training material, which eliminates the cost and effort of developing your own training content
Cons of outsourcing classroom training
- Little control over quality
- May involve additional costs of logistics
- Outsourced instructors often deliver generic training and may not effectively deliver training relevant to your business
If you are considering building your own team of trainers, there are pros and cons associated with the same:
Pros of in-house training instructors
- Reduced training costs for businesses that require frequent training sessions
- Added HR resources
- In-house expertise to help with training content development
Cons of in-house training instructors
- May cost your business unnecessary money and resources if training is not conducted frequently
This was a list of pros and cons associated with outsourcing different aspects of your corporate training endeavours. This list, however, is not exhaustive and unique case scenarios may demand unique considerations. However, it is a great starting point when it comes to
deciding whether or not training should be outsourced.