How to design cost-effective training solutions?

While everyone acknowledges the benefit of online workforce training, they also know effective courses usually come with high costs. So, is it worthwhile? How to design cost-effective training solutions? If you’ve been wondering, here are some useful tips that can get you there.

Why training cost is often high?

To begin, we must understand why training is expensive first, in order to figure out the right training solutions. So, have you known the average developing cost yet? Well, here’s the number.

$10,000 per hour – the average cost of developing online training courses

how to reduce cost to create effective training solutions

According to a research of Chapman Alliance in 2010, it cost around $10,000 to develop 1 hour of a basic training course. Of course, if you want to integrate more features or interactivity into your course, the number goes even higher. For instance, a 3-minutes interact training video with animation elements can cost $3000. The price can up to $90000 if you work with a professional studio based in the US.

Where are all the costs come from?

Now we’ve learned about the numbers, it’s time to find out what are the main causes behind it.

1. Design training materials cost 

Creating an efficient training course is no easy job. Because, there are various processes and you’ll need experts to help you throughout each stage of development. Such as, the instructional design team that including graphic designer, content creator, video editor, etc. Not to mention, subject matter experts or even marketer as well (depend on your course’s scale). Of course, their work will have to be paid deservedly. Thus, the more people you have, the higher the cost will be.

Animation as an effective material of cost-effective training solutions
For example, to design visual content materials, you’ll need a content creator to work with a graphic designer. 

2. The course’s features 

Images, videos, animation or sound effect and many more…These are the elements that can add engagement and creative quality to your course. Depend on your ability, either make it yourself or purchase it. One way or another, it will cost your money or time, even both. On the other hand, text-based and talking-heads videos are surely less expensive. But courses that integrated visual elements proved to be way more effective and trainees enjoy them way better.

3. Interactive simulations

One thing that can’t be missing in a successful training course is interactivity. In particular, it includes assessments, scenarios, storytelling games, etc. And it is also one of the major sources where cost come from.

After all the main reasons for the high cost, we still have to include the time and money spent on each stage of course-making: design stage, development and implementation stage. Together, they are the major causes of big numbers.

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What is a cost-effective training program?

With the huge investment like that, you might be asking “Is it worth it?” Or more importantly, in which ways can it live up to the cost? Can it pay off in the long run? Well, here are some of the reasons that can make you see the answer more clearly.

Learning more effectively

This is one of the greatest benefits of a high-quality training course. Unlike traditional training or text-based/talking-head videos, visual training courses can attract trainees and secure their attention like no other could. Why? Because our brains are just hardwired to love images! Since 2007, the internet has seen a 9900% increase in the use of visualized information. In fact, not only we’re drawn by it, but images or moving images make knowledge easier to understand. For example, if you are training your employees about a technical subject. Would it be simpler to show them an illustrative video like this one, instead of explaining to them via text or talking?

Plus, with the advance of interactive simulations, they will remember what they’ve practiced much longer. Because, according to a research, people recall just 20% of what they read, but rather, 80% of what they see and do.

So, the high investment will eventually result in better training outcomes and better performance in the future. Sounds quite effective, isn’t it?


The old saying goes “Time is money”. Indeed, everyone works at a very fast pace nowadays, and prefer not a single minute goes by wasted. With text-based videos, it can take quite a lot of time for trainees to comprehend, especially for people who have Dyslexia problems. On the other hand, as opposed to text or talk, visual learning is processed 60,000x faster. Therefore, save a lot of time for not only the trainees but also the company or organization which hire them.

Practice in safe environments

Often, the success of a training course depends greatly on its interaction with the users. On the contrary, trainees will feel like they’re all alone and unmotivated if the course lacks interactivity. So, this is where quizzes, assessments, and scenarios can help them. Not only can users get the chance to consolidate the knowledge they’ve gained but also improve their practice skills in a safe space. In training programs, many instructors nervous about letting trainees go on the field, cause they might make mistakes that affect the workflow. But with courses that include interactive simulations, risks are eliminated and more benefits come in.

Read more:
> How to add meaningful interactions into your eLearning course 

Reusable training materials

Once you have created a high-quality training course, you can use it many times with multiple generations of employees. So yes, it’s not a one-time thing. And even if some of the information or feature are outdated, there will always be room for updates. For one thing, you don’t have to throw everything away and start from scratch.

So, now you’ve understood how a cost-effective training course can pay off in the long run. That is to say, high-quality courses usually come with great outcomes. It’s all about how much investment we put in them.

How to design cost-effective training solutions?

There are a few training solutions to help you reduce some of the unwanted cost. Or more importantly, make sure that your investment is going to the right places. Here are they

State clear objectives and desired outcomes

Before going onto the development stage, it’s best if you can identify your course’s objectives and desired outcomes. This way, it can keep you on focus and away from the cost of unnecessaries.

Tip: Also, a detailed plan that contains an estimated budget can be really useful! 

Develop effective training materials

To design successful training solutions, don’t build without tools. In other words, let materials/elements support you in the making of training course. For instance,

  • Word, Excel and Microsoft Office are excellent programs when you need to work with outlines or text-based content.
  • If you need some visual aids to better explain subjects, why don’t try graph/ chart or Powerpoint slide? They can be a great help!
power of visual in creating interactive training solutions
  • Having trouble with captivating trainees’ attention? Try the storytelling method. Not only will it do the job, but also provoke good emotions in people. Therefore, make the learning experience memorable. Cause the shortest distance from the head to the heart is a story, right?
  • Use reusable materials like animation or slide. They’re flexible elements that can fit many subjects. This way, you can save a lot of time and money while still manage to keep an interesting appeal for your course

Hire a skilled team to work with  

It’s almost impossible to create a training course on your own. Hence, you gotta have people to help you with it. Naturally, their work can affect directly on the outcome of your product. So choose your team wisely! Hire an inexperienced team is definitely cheaper. But the downside is they can make lots of mistakes that can cost you money and time to repair. While on the other hand, professional staffs will help you get there faster and smoothly. Plus, they ensure the quality of your course!

Implement the training course

Have you heard of LMS? Well, if you haven’t, it stands for Learning Management System, which is a wonderful software program that helps you create, manage and deliver courses.

It can help you in many ways, such as:

  • Keep track on trainee’s progress and performance
  • Keep everyone up-to-date. Via LMS, trainees have the same source of information and assessments. The content is centralized and consistent.
  • Save time. LMS can reduce training time since it direct trainees to the specific information they need. With LMS, it is indeed everything is just “one click away”.

Truly, LMS is one of the necessary tool to develop successful training solutions.

Evaluate and improve training program

No training is created perfectly from the beginning. But rather, after evaluations can it be excellent and most effective to the users. So, these are a few ways that might be useful in bettering your training course:

  • Base on participants’ learning outcomes to evaluate
  • Ask the experts or professtional team for some advices
  • Look at the latest trends of training solutions
  • From there, adjust your course to improve the quality and enhance learners’ experience.


In short, a successful training solution is to have a cost-effective program. That is to understand where to put investments in and how it can benefit your training for the long haul. Add creative elements into the development by visual features, interactivity, and great content, then the result will be extraordinary!

Hopefully, this post has been useful to you. Check out our other article for more great tips and advice about online training courses and eLearning!

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