Off-the-job training occurs when employees are taken away from their place of work to be trained.

Common methods of off-the-job training include:

  • Day release (employee takes time off work to attend a local college or training centre)
  • Distance learning / evening classes
  • Block release courses - which may involve several weeks at a local college
  • Sandwich courses - where the employee spends a longer period of time at college (e.g. six months) before returning to work
  • Sponsored courses in higher education
  • Self-study, computer-based training

The main advantages and disadvantages of this form of training can be summarised as follows:

Advantages

Disadvantages

A wider range of skills or qualifications can be obtained

Can learn from outside specialists or experts

Employees can be more confident when starting job

More expensive – e.g. transport and accommodation

Lost working time and potential output from employee

New employees may still need some induction training

Employees now have new skills/qualifications and may leave for better jobs

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