Internal or External Training: Which is Best?
Training is an integral part of every company’s strategy — or, at least, it should be. Learning and development are key elements of the success of a business, aided by the fact that effective training can significantly improve productivity and retention.
You can find endless debates about which type of training is best for employees. Should training be organised in-house or externally? In truth, there are certain types which have to be organised in-house. Nobody is suggesting using external trainers for employee inductions and handovers. However, developing employees to be managers and to provide HR knowledge can be done by external providers, and is often the option with more potential.
The important thing, if you do work with an external company, is knowing how to get the most out of training. Alternatively, if you arrange in-house training, think about how that can be beneficial for everybody involved.
Working with External Training Providers
External training companies have the ability to hire industry experts who have experience in a variety of sectors. Their business model is all about creating the very best training. This means they are able to hire the very best facilitators and create content which is tried and tested.
Allowing a training company to do in-house training is highly valuable. If you decide to work with an external training provider, you’ll both want to get as much as possible out of the training day, so make sure you discuss the goals of the business and job role. Having an in-depth consultation is beneficial for everybody involved and allows the training company to create unique, specific training resources.
Employees attending external training days can also bring new ideas to the organisation. Leaving the office environment for one day can help employees return with fresh ideas, fueled by talks with experts and fellow employees from other companies.
Organising the Training Internally
There are many benefits to organising training in-house. If you have somebody with the correct skills and knowledge, this option can be much more practical, cost-effective and time-effective than an external training company. You just need to ensure that every aspect of the training can be delivered well by those already under your employment.
The training can easily fit around everyone’s schedule and the travel expenses are totally eradicated The training can also be very specific to the company and use real-life examples that are close at hand.
However, internal training needs to be organised effectively. Ensure that your chosen employee has plenty of time to put together the training. Give them a small budget to get any resources they need. If they are enthusiastic about doing the training, this will help the day run smoothly. Don’t give the role to somebody who already has a mountain of work to deal with and isn’t passionate about doing it. Make sure they are provided with a good room and environment for learning, away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the office.
Making the Final Choice
Here are two final questions to consider when organising your training:
- Do the skills required lie outside of your company’s knowledge?
New ideas and challenges within the company may require an outside perspective. For example, if you want to implement a new social media strategy, the resources and knowledge are probably not present yet within the company. An external training provider can share their advice and expertise.
- What is the goal of the training?
The end goal is crucial to the success of a training course. If an external provider has a training course which hits all of your goals, find out if it is within your budget and resources to hire them.Excellent training companies will also have a flurry of testimonials on their website and always be happy to answer any questions you might have about the training day.
About the Author
Christine Macdonald is the director of The Hub Events. She has been working in learning and development for over 15 years and is committed to providing high-quality leadership training courses.