Hiring freelancers. Outsourcing projects. These are usually phrases associated with creative fields, like marketing, eLearning development and graphic design. But as the working world changes, organisations are starting to outsource some atypical departments. And L&D are at the top of that list.
But what is outsourcing? A simple definition is: The practice of hiring freelancers or a company to perform services or create goods that were traditionally performed in-house. The concept of outsourcing was first recognised as a business strategy in the 1980’s and became mainstream in the 90’s.
Why are so many reluctant to outsource?
Despite decades of success, many organisations are still reluctant to outsource L&D. And this often comes down to the unknown. Will the outsourced provider deliver? Will they have the right skills? Or will the exercise be a huge waste of money?
We’re here to reassure you that this will not be the case. In fact, there are many benefits to outsourcing L&D, and in this article we’re going to highlight them for you.
Three undeniable reasons to outsource learning and development
#1 Leverage experience and new ideas
Agencies and freelancers that are in the business of providing outsourced L&D services are quite often the cream of the crop. These people will bring years of experience to your organisation. They will have faced many business challenges throughout their career. And they know the solutions that work – and the ones that don’t.
This experience allows your outsourced partner to come into your organisation and ‘hit the ground running’. Enabling them to quickly develop creative, modern solutions to your L&D problems – that meet both business objectives and learners desires.
#2 Saving money and mitigate risk
Another objection to utilising freelancers or agencies for L&D is the associated cost. But what many do not realise is L&D isn’t just a nice to have. To truly drive your organisation forward, you must prioritise your people and their growth. To do that, you need learning and development. So, the cost here isn’t investing in L&D or not. It’s an opportunity cost, between investing your time and efforts into L&D internally, or hiring an external expert.
Although there are many hugely talented L&D professionals willing and able to work for you in-house, the best also come at a high price point. And they come as a single individual. When you look to an agency to develop your L&D initiatives, you benefit from a myriad of skills from a range of people. For example, if you partnered with us at Jam Pan, you’d gain access to the best developers, learning experience designers and project managers in the market. But you’d also enjoy our unique know-how about learning, based on nearly 10 years experience. This experience means we know common hurdles when it comes to L&D projects – and we can think ahead to help you overcome them, before they happen! It’s these kinds of benefits that you cannot overlook when deciding whether to outsource learning and development.
#3 Subject matter expertise
When it comes to creating learning for your employees, you cover a range of topics. From health & safety, to GDPR and leadership. It’s unlikely that you’ll have a subject matter expert (SME) on all these topics in your organisation. But when you outsource learning and development, your outsourced partner, they will bring many of these skills to the table with them (along with their L&D expertise!)
This ensures your learners are benefiting from leveraging great knowledge and skills from SME’s. But it also accelerates learning in your organisation. Just imagine the time you’ll save by utilising the knowledge and expertise of your outsourced partner, instead of sourcing the know how yourself!
Your journey to outsourcing learning & development
Now you understand the benefits of outsourcing L&D, where do you start? The truth is, this varies based on your business needs. You might decide you need one partner that can solve all your L&D needs for you, and deliver learning in a range of formats to suit your learners needs. Or, you may have decided on a delivery method – eLearning for example – and you then can select from the range of eLearning development organisations/freelancers on the market.
But before diving head-first into the newest, shiniest solution, it’s important to think about your business needs, and your learning goals. Creating learning interventions without purpose will never result in a strong learning culture, or behavioural change. So think about the why, then approach vendors that suit your needs. But we’d like to think Jam Pan will be in your shortlist regardless of your decision. In fact, we’re so confident we’ll be able to help you – why not get in touch with us today? To discuss outsourcing your L&D requirements.