Everything seems to come with hidden costs these days.  

Extra charges for roaming data, added postage costs or sneaky admin fees – companies are always trying to squeeze as much as they can out of a sale. To avoid these hidden costs, you have to be a savvy shopper – especially when you’re looking for elearning software.  

Most elearning providers charge a subscription fee, but some will add sneaky charges onto your invoice. So even if the base rate seems cheap to start with, they end up costing much more. To help you get the best deal, we’ve compiled a list of hidden costs for you to look out for.  

Support 

All good software companies will provide technical support – either online, face-to-face or on the phone. It’s something all users need, but it’s an area that’s often rife with hidden costs. Some providers offer free online support, but will charge extortionate prices for visits or have high call rates and keep you on hold. Keep a look out for free support services and good-quality training.  

Standards  

Elearning is usually based around standards or criteria, but some providers charge for standards to be built – and even more for custom courses. Look for a provider that offers free standards and bespoke builds.  

Training  

Everyone has different tech skills, so users may need training. Some providers see this as a premium service and charge premium prices for face-to-face training sessions. Some companies even charge for online training, webinars and customer events – so look out for a provider that offers free setup, online training and sharing best practice events.  

Additional features 

Some providers may have a low standard price, but charge more for all those added extras – like reporting features, video recording, CPD functionality or integrations. Look for an elearning software with all these features built-in and unlimited integrations. 

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Some providers offer a combined MIS and elearning system, which means you could be compromising on the quality overall. Look out for an elearning software that integrates with your MIS system, so you get the best of both worlds.  

Exit charges 

You don’t want to think about leaving software when you’re looking for a new one, but it’s worth keeping in mind. Some providers charge thousands of pounds to remove your data from their system if you decide to leave. Look out for exit charges in the small print.   

Learners  

Training courses often vary in length and capacity, so flexibility is key. Many software providers charge more for additional subscriptions – look for one with pro-rata pay schemes and a per-seat model. This will give you all the flexibility you need as learners can hop on and hop off during the year with no extra cost.  

One of the easiest ways to avoid these pitfalls is to find an all-in-one deal – a subscription that includes support, standards, training and features on a per-seat basis. OneFile is exactly that. Our elearning software has everything you need to deliver all types of vocational training. It has a built-in eportfolio, VLE, learning hub, reporting suite and mobile app. There are no hidden costs or cheeky add-ons – just one fair price on a per-seat basis.  

About OneFile: Supporting over 600,000 users worldwide, OneFile is the UK's leading eportfolio for learning and development – and winner of the 2017 Queen's Award for Innovation. But we do more than sell software. We believe people deserve to reach their full potential – that's why we've made it our mission to shape the futures of 1 million people by 2020.  

To achieve this, we've developed OneFile into an all-in-one learning software ideal for all types of vocational training. It's a training eportfolio, assessment software, learning environment and CPD tracker – with more features than any other on the market, download our free guide.

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