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Michael O'Flynn

Professional Academy

Sales & Marketing Director

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Choosing and utilising outside training providers


As someone responsible for delivering the training function of your business, you may feel an onus to provide the entire program solely rather than relying on others to assist with the delivery itself. A core responsibility for the Learning & Development team at any organisation is to identify the most efficient, cost-effective methods of up-skilling the workforce.

The truth is, in certain situations it's simpler and better suited for outside trainers to organise in-house sessions to pass over fundamental knowledge in an area you lack expertise in.

How do you know when to bring in help?

A large part of training revolves around the ability to adapt and present relevant courses and qualifications, even those that you yourself aren't totally comfortable with or don't feel fully confident in delivering.

When making the decision to bring in external training partners it’s important to remember that this is part of your role, identifying areas of weakness for the company and working to fix them in order to help push productivity and raise performance levels.

Choosing a training provider is key, not only are you delegating work to them but in most instances will be letting them into your business to work with your employees. Ensuring they’re delivering the required skills is vitally important for the entire business.

Eighty-Seven percent of businesses possessing an internal L&D team say they use external trainers as a means to fill a gap in knowledge.

From a survey carried out last year by Mimeo, over 59% of organisations’ L&D teams comprised of less than 10 people, additionally, the average practitioner fulfils three different roles a day.

For a team of trainers working with these conditions the likelihood of additional help being required at some point is significantly higher than others.

With any training program at the business, a number of important aspects shouldn’t be overlooked while deciding which route to take in the delivery. Hiring outside help shouldn’t make any differences when it comes to the actual methods used.


For businesses in the UK certain legal aspects need to be accounted for also, data protection and confidentiality agreements have to be followed. Any outside training provider mustn’t have access to any information pertaining to employees or clients. While an insight into current training practices and day-to-day activities is required for a bespoke training package always stray on the side of caution.

Professional Academy has spent over a decade delivering fully accredited and internationally recognised qualifications to businesses around the world and know what goes into choosing to work externally.

Cuts, cuts and more cuts

Training budgets are often the first to be cut due to lack of a perceived ROI, Thanks to these innumerable cuts, lack of a ‘buy-in’ and the rise of individuals choosing to go it alone and seek their own training the L&D position has steadily become one which now experiences a daily struggle to run efficiently.

Running alongside internal functions, outside providers can help create a symbiotic relationship benefiting all those employees who can take advantage of a wealth of experience and knowledge from two separate points-of-view.

These partnerships are what will provide the best results when it comes down to appraisals of the activities carried out. One internal team can only know and deliver so much, rotating through a series of other providers who all offer additional insights will result in a much more rounded skill set for those taking part.

For anyone working in a training function, there are always new development, techniques and methods of presenting an L&D course to not only remember but utilise in an effective manner to relay the information to those attending the training sessions.

A revolving door may be too much but a successful program should maintain a steady stream of faces who all offer unique aspects to the course structure while adding into the company’s own files and skill base.

Author Profile Picture
Michael O'Flynn

Sales & Marketing Director

Read more from Michael O'Flynn

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