A model for outsourcing HRD

David Simmonds (University of Westminster, London, UK)
Rebecca Gibson (Colliers CRE, London UK)

Journal of European Industrial Training

ISSN: 0309-0590

Publication date: 25 January 2008



The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of approaches to outsourcing HRD in the UK.


This paper employs semi‐structured interviews and case studies. The research model was developed from a literature review.


There are many problems associated with outsourcing any or all aspects of the HRD function. Approaches to outsourcing vary between firms, largely because their impetus for taking training outside is likely to differ. There are certain key issues that need to be considered when trying to make an outsourced HRD strategy successful in any organization: making the right decision about what to outsource; engaging the right providers; and putting measures in place to build and maintain a strong, trusting, effective relationship.

Research limitations/implications

The model should be further tested, applied and refined as necessary.

Practical implications

Organizations wishing to outsource HRD could be guided by the model and findings of this research.


A novel and innovative two‐part model was developed from a literature review and tested against two large well‐known UK organizations. It will be of value to HRD managers and researchers.



Simmonds, D. and Gibson, R. (2008), "A model for outsourcing HRD", Journal of European Industrial Training, Vol. 32 No. 1, pp. 4-18. https://doi.org/10.1108/03090590810846539

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Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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