Cheap training…spotting the difference between cheap and value

Saving money. It makes every one of us happy. It’s great to know that you have bagged a bargain. But where does value end and cheap begin and how can we tell if we have bought something that is cheap because it just isn’t worth very much or if you have bought something of real value? Never has this question been more important than in the Project Management training world. Spend only a little on a cheap training course and you could find that you regret the decision when your experience and after course care gives you the bare minimum.

Here at SPOCE, we have been training providers for a huge portfolio of approaches and after 25 years of delivering world class training across the globe, we consider themselves somewhat experts on the subject. Here, we give you a list of important questions that need to be asked before booking on any course that looks ‘too cheap to be true.’

We are so confident that we know what we are talking about we have even produced a series of short films which help to highlight the issues. Join us and our three hapless delegates Hattie, Jake and Rob as they take a leap of faith into the world of cheap training…only to regret it in the long-run.

Questions you need to ask before paying for a cheap training course

1. Who is delivering my course and how much experience do they have?

Your trainers need to have experience delivering the course that you are sitting. Check that there is a vetting system in place with the organisation you are booking with and that the trainers are certified in the subject they are teaching you. Ask what contributions they have made to the industry and if they have any professional acknowledgements. Also, ask what their standard pass rates are.

2. Will there be any additional costs for me to pay or is everything upfront?

We have all booked cheap airline seats in the past, only to find that the costs that we paid at the beginning are only just the start of things. Make sure you are getting what you think you are paying for and that facilities, refreshments, course materials are not added on top.

3.      What do previous delegates and clients think of the course and the company?

The best people to ask when you want a recommendation are those that have experienced dealing with the company in the past. It pays to check the review sites before booking your course to make sure that the company you are booking with has a good score. Here at SPOCE we actively encourage our delegates to rate their experience with us on independent review sites such as Course Conductor. We are proud to be the highest rated project management training provider on Course Conductor and invite you to read some of the reviews that people have left for us.

4. Is my course likely to be cancelled for any reason and if it is, do I have the option to re-book where I like?

Sometimes, due to unforeseen circumstances, your course may have to be cancelled. Make sure that you have the option to rebook when and where you like if this does happen to you and that you are not placed just anywhere.

5. How many delegates will there be in my class and how big are the rooms

Some courses can be cheap because there are far too many delegates in one tiny space. As the founder organisation for ASPECT (Association for the Promotion of Excellence in Consultancy and Training) SPOCE wrote the rulebook on quality training and recommend that no more than 16 delegates at any one time are on the same training course and that lighting and space for each delegate is key.

6. Are my course materials included in the price?

Don’t get caught paying a low cost to start with then finding out that you need to purchase materials on top of what you have already paid. This includes admin and postage fees.

7. What happens if I fail?

It is not something we like to think about but if in the unlikely event that you do fail your course, ask what options there are for you with regards to resitting your exam. Do you have to pay full price to re-sit this for example? At SPOCE, if delegates pay the price advertised on our website for their course and they final their exam, then the next resit is free. This is because we are so confident in their pass rates to begin with.

Click here to see our shoprt film on SPOCE Vs Cheap training


SPOCE Project Management Limited is a global leader in delivering best practice training for project programme and risk management. We offer a wide range of courses which can be tailored to suit any form of training need. For example, public courses e-Learning, blended learning and client workshops. SPOCE is the flagship training provider for PRINCE2® and MSP® and were APMGs first ever training provider.

Call; 0800 177 7623