Business owners have two basic options when it comes time to train their employees. They can develop or purchase training programs and implement them in the workplace, or they can outsource training by using external suppliers. However, the latter approach has several disadvantages.


Depending on the situation, it might cost more to hire an external supplier than to conduct in-house training. For example, if the business owner is willing to learn effective training methods and design a customized program for her employees, she can save significantly. The DIY approach can be time-intensive, so business owners must weigh the costs of an external supplier’s training courses with the costs of developing and implementing their own programs.

Wrong Focus

The focus of a generalized training program provided by an external supplier won't exactly match any one company's needs. For example, suppose a software manufacturer offers a training program for a business's employees. The training program will teach multiple aspects of using the software, but some businesses might be interested in training their employees only in one specific aspect. In this case, an in-house training program might be a better choice, because it would allow the business owner to narrow the focus of the training to the essential elements.

Confidentiality Breaches

If the training involves information the business doesn’t want made public, trusting an external supplier might be risky. For example, if a company is training its employees to implement a competitive strategy, a leak from the external supplier could be devastating. An in-house training program, in contrast, can be monitored and controlled by the business owner to ensure confidentiality is maintained.


If travel is required for employees to attend external training, the business will have to pay for hotels, transportation and other related costs. Also, any time employees spend traveling and at the training seminar is time they aren't working. Some external suppliers offer training seminars on location, so this might not be a problem in all situations.

Lost Opportunity

One thing to consider about outsourced training is that the business will not develop its own permanent training program. If the business creates an in-house training program, all new employees have a ready resource for training. Also, having an in-house program allows a business to continually modify the focus and scope of employee training to match evolving business needs.