Keeping your employees up to date with health and safety trainings is essential to any organization’s ultimate success. It keeps your workers aware of potential occupational hazards and provides them with the knowledge to react appropriately in the event of an emergency or incident.

Besides the obvious benefits to building and implementing a thorough health and safety training program, we now have a huge variety of choices to choose from in terms of training – so many that it can quickly become overwhelming. Half the battle is choosing between online and in-person trainings when the option is available, so we put together this pros and cons list for you to consider when weighing the options.

In-Person Trainings


  • Your employees will get face-to-face interaction both with the instructor and with their colleagues, often leading to higher engagement and greater sense of accountability for completing required trainings.
  • A classroom environment gives workers the chance to ask questions in real time and receive answers from those who have exhaustive experience on the subject matter.
  • Some trainers include hands-on portions of training, giving employees the chance to experience the subject matter first hand in a controlled environment.
  • Accessing in-person trainings is infinitely easier with people with limited access to the internet.
  • Bringing someone in to conduct training gives you the opportunity to partner with health and safety training consultants, which has proven valuable for many organizations.


  • Getting all trainees in the same place at the same time can be challenging.

Note: Although having everyone complete trainings at once is not always logistically necessary, often times it is the most cost-effective approach. That way, a consultant does not have to come out on multiple occasions due to scheduling hurdles.[/su_note]

  • When stacked up against some online training programs, in-person trainings can be relatively costly and time-consuming.

Online Trainings


  • One of the biggest upsides to an online training program is there are so many flexible options available. You can choose between one-off trainings, fully integrated learning management systems, and everything in between. Customization options give you the freedom to choose exactly what works for your situation, no matter the size of your organization.
  • Online training programs are relatively low-maintenance. Many systems give you the opportunity to assign and track who has completed what trainings, so you can get back to operational tasks on hand and only send out the occasional reminder email or utilize a built-in notification system.
  • As a manager, you will not have to set aside time for all employees to sit down and complete their trainings. They are free to do it on their own time which is almost always appreciated on both ends.


  • Employee accountability can be one of the biggest pitfalls in choosing an online training system. They probably get notifications they have to complete trainings, but without a time structured especially for training, it can be difficult for some to sit down and complete what they need to.
  • Internet accessibility does not sound like a modern problem, but is a completely valid concern for managers responsible for worker training. Not everyone will have regular access to a computer or public Wi-Fi, especially during busier months when employees are out and about on work assignments.

So… what will you choose?

The good news is, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for health and safety training. Depending on the nature of your work, you can choose one or the other and be completely compliant with OSHA standards and recommendations. The other option available is to implement a hybrid approach – many times this is a great solution for those who require a large amount of training on an annual basis.