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4 Reasons Strategic Sourcing Enhances Training Delivery

Delivering quality and cost-effective learning opportunities to employees is a great challenge for many organizations. The push to constantly upskill, reskill, and remain competitive requires learning and development (L&D) initiatives to be agile and relevant. L&D teams are understandably leaning more and more on technology to deliver learning content.

Although organizations have a desire to shift their learning content from in-person to digital, instructor-led training (ILT) continues to have its place in the learning ecosystem. The need for qualified instructors to deliver training is top of mind for many learning organizations. For both in-person and virtual instructor-led training (VILT), organizations need capable people to engage learners and effectively deliver training.

VILT specifically demands facilitators with a high level of skill and comfortability with technology. However, it can be difficult to find or develop great instructors who can deliver the training and a positive learner experience in a cost-effective way. This is why the strategic sourcing of your training delivery through a managed learning services partner can become a key component to the success of your L&D operations and a competitive advantage to your company.

The Challenges of In-House ILT Delivery

The pressure to cut costs and the prevalence of digital learning technologies have dramatically impacted the use of ILT and VILT. Despite the downturn in popularity, organizations must still be able to provide effective ILT. There will always be instances when your people need in-person, hands-on experience with equipment and techniques that even high-tech solutions like augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) cannot replicate. Not all training should be delivered in a self-guided, self-paced format.

This push to include as much blended, digital learning as possible is popular because it minimizes ILT, one of the most expensive means to deliver training. Many organizations have also dramatically reduced the headcount of their training staff in recent years in response to this digital shift, but there is still a deep need for ILT in most industries.

Here are some of the challenges of managing all ILT in-house:

  • Keeping a pool of qualified, engaging instructors and virtual producers with a variety of experiences and strengths on payroll can be very costly.
  • As companies grow and adapt to new circumstances, trends, and technologies, the bandwidth and availability of in-house instructors can become stretched thin.
  • Certifying instructors and maintaining their qualifications can be an expensive, time-intensive endeavor.
  • The rise in popularity of blended learning experiences means that trainers need to be able to effectively teach in a variety of formats, which is not always a reasonable request.
  • For global companies, the demand for in-person training delivered in a local language can be difficult to support and is often at significant cost to the company. 
  • It can be difficult to forecast future learning needs, which makes it harder to find and manage resources when needs arise.

Strategically outsourcing training delivery services can address many of these challenges.

4 Reasons Strategic Sourcing Will Transform Your Training

There are several benefits to strategically sourcing training delivery through a managed learning services provider.

1.      Training is more localized and learner focused.

Managed learning service providers have access to an expansive pool of professional trainers, which provides them the ability to quickly source the specific type of trainer you need. Having a pool of qualified candidates means you have access to instructors in a variety of geographical locations who have various skill sets, qualifications, and experiences.

Because you will have access to the specific type of instructor you need in a convenient location, training can be more localized and learner focused. To be effective, instructors must be well-versed in not only the content or procedures being taught but also the technology being used. In addition to providing skilled facilitators to deliver training, many managed learning service providers can also offer virtual producers with an intimate understanding of the technology to host and manage VILT sessions. Leveraging virtual producers helps reduce disruptions and improves the overall learner experience.

2.     Training processes will be more efficient and more cost effective.

When you strategically source your training delivery, you streamline several important processes. Training partners standardize the expensive and time-consuming processes necessary to properly identify, select, onboard, qualify, manage, and evaluate instructors.

By leveraging standardized procedures and supporting technology, your training partner will be able to use their existing data and information to determine the best instructor for your specific training need. Your training partner will consider past instructor performance, availability, expertise, location, and experience level. Furthermore, leveraging the pool of instructors your training partner has provides a level of readiness not attainable when training delivery is handled within your organization.

3.     You will be more agile and able to respond to variability in training demand.

By simplifying and standardizing processes, you can massively reduce the costs involved with finding the right person for a training need. Because your organization now has access to a pool of great instructors who can meet your specific needs in real time, your entire organization will become more agile and better equipped to react to changes in your industry.

The demands of training can fluctuate for a variety of reasons. When you strategically source your training delivery, you no longer need to be concerned with maintaining a full training staff. You can therefore focus on planning for future needs and optimizing current processes.

4.     The administrative burden that L&D teams feel will be alleviated.

Performance management and maintaining training rigor requires a lot of valuable time and attention. In addition to finding and qualifying the right instructors for your training need, your training partner will also manage the performance of your instructors and provide necessary coaching.

When you strategically outsource so many time-consuming and cost-intensive processes, you greatly lessen your L&D team’s administrative burden. No longer concerned with finding or maintaining qualified candidates and managing performance, your L&D team can focus on more important endeavors, like planning for future training needs, optimizing current processes, and building new programs.

Strategic Sourcing Transforms the Training Experience

The value of strategically sourcing your training delivery is that you have access to necessary resources when you need them. Your training and your instructors can quickly adjust to and address new trends or training gaps that you identify over time. Meanwhile, you can focus on the big picture and the future of learning and development within your organization.

Outsourcing training delivery is just one of the ways you can achieve a competitive advantage through managed learning services. For more information about how the comprehensive and holistic services that a managed learning service provider offers can transform your workers and your learning environment, visit GP Strategies’ website.

About the Authors

Heidi Milberg, Vice President

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