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Purchasing Off-The-Shelf Training Content: Considerations To Make

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As employee training becomes a commonly found perk, more and more businesses are rushing to create their own employee training initiative. 

In this race, many bootstrapped businesses have had to depend on off-the-shelf training content to fulfill their training needs.

However, ready made training content has earned a bad rep for being ineffective. 

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In our opinion, nothing can be further from the truth. Off-the-shelf training content is created by industry experts that know and follow the best practices for creating training content. 

The right readymade training content is going to be effective. However, choosing the right training content can be a tricky task.

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Choosing the wrong off-the-shelf training content vendor can turn out to be an expensive mistake, especially for bootstrapped businesses that are operating on a limited budget.

Imagine spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on training content that changes nothing for your organisation or its employees. 

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Not only would your investment in securing the training content be wasted, the paid employee hours dedicated training will also go down the drain.

If you wish to save yourself and your business from such a mishap, make these considerations while picking an off-the-shelf training module for your corporate training needs:

Check The Track Record

This is perhaps the most critical step while choosing any kind of service provider. In this case, you will be verifying how many other organisations have opted to work with the content of a particular vendor. It is also a good idea to check for online reviews. While doing this, make sure you don’t just stick to one platform. 

Posting duplicate reviews is easier than ever before. Hence, it is advisable to check for reviews on several platforms.

Once you have selected a few vendors that boast a healthy list of clients and positive online reviews, it is time to ask them for client references. Any dependable vendor has at least one happy client that is willing to take out two minutes to describe their positive experience with them.

Mobile Readiness

The number of mobile device users is growing rapidly. Chances are, almost all your trainees/learners have a mobile device. 

Making training available to them on a mobile device will make it easier for them to consume the training content. 

With fewer deterrents, you can expect encouraging completion rates and good retention and comprehension.

Hence, it is important to ensure the readymade training module vendor you choose offers mobile ready training content.


Yes, even off-the-shelf training content comes with customisation options. While these are limited, they can prove extremely useful in creating a branded training experience for your employees.

Look for a training content vendor that will brand the course material with your company’s logo and change the basic colour scheme of the lessons to align with your brand colours.

Compatibility With Existing Elearning Tools

It is important to ensure that your existing learning management system can support the training content formats that you will receive. 

Moreover, if you are using an elearning authoring tool, make sure the content you purchase is compatible with it.

This way, if you need to make any updates in the future, you can execute them on your own.

Thankfully, most modern elearning content and tools follow SCORM compliance standards and getting incompatible training content is an extremely rare occurrence.

However, as they say, it is better to be safe than to be sorry. Hence, it is always advisable to test your readymade content for compatibility.


Getting off-the-shelf content to fulfill your businesses’ training needs might seem like the easier choice in comparison to developing custom training content but it still requires some diligence to prove to be a fruitful undertaking.

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