US Corporate Training Market

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US Corporate Training Market: Market Size and Growth

While industry analyses vary in their conclusions regarding the size of the US corporate training industry, data show that the size of the industry is likely between $87.6 billion and $142.78 billion as of 2018 (calculations used to arrive at the second figure are shown below). One industry analysis shows that the industry grew at an annualized rate of 2.2% since 2008, while another shows that it grew at an annualized rate of 7.87% since 2013; a separate market report forecasts approximately 10% CAGR in this industry through 2022. Below are all of our findings on this subject, followed by an explanation of our methodology.

US Corporate Training Market: Size and Growth

  • An analysis by Training Industry, a corporate training industry authority that produces Training Industry Magazine, found that the North American corporate training industry totaled $166.8 billion in 2018. It does not break this total down by country, but given the US represents 85.6% of the total GDP of North America, assuming that it represents approximately the same proportion of the US corporate training industry, the US corporate training market totaled ($166.8*85.6%)=$142.78 billion.
  • This figure roughly lines up with a figure provided in a 2017 Forbes report, which stated that the corporate training market totaled $130 billion.
  • However, a recent report by Training Magazine, a professional development industry publication, provided a more conservative estimate of expenditures in the US corporate training industry, finding that they totaled $87.6 billion in 2018.
  • This total represented a substantial decline of 6.4% from 2017, although this can largely be explained by the spike in corporate training expenditures in that year, rising from $70.6 billion in 2016 to $93.6 billion in 2017. The Training Industry figure represented a modest 1.2% increase from the prior year.
  • Using a CAGR calculator, it was determined that the Training Industry data showed the North American corporate training industry growing at an annualized rate of 2.2% since 2008, while the Training Magazine data showed the US corporate training industry growing at an annualized rate of 7.87%.
  • Technavio, in a recent market report, projected that the US corporate training market will grow at a CAGR of "close to 10%" between the period of 2018 and 2022.

Your research team employed the following strategy:

To find the market size and growth of the US corporate training industry, we conducted three distinct research approaches to ensure that we collected the most available data. Our first approach consisted of a search in relevant industry publications. Here, we found two analyses described above, one by Training Industry and another by Training Magazine. These reports provided data regarding the market size of this industry (though their findings were disparate), and this data allowed us to calculate the growth rate of the industry in recent years, according to their analyses.

As a second approach, we conducted a search of third-party research organizations and scholarly databases. This search produced numerous reports examining the global corporate training market, but each of these reports required payment to access in full, and as such we could not determine if they featured data specific to the US. Only one report with useful data (the aforementioned Technavio report) was found in this portion of the research. This, too, required payment to access in full; fortunately, the projected CAGR of the industry was provided in the report's free summary.

Our third approach consisted of a wide-ranging press search. Here, we hoped to find relevant data points included in media reports, or media reports discussing relevant research that we could further examine. In this portion of the research, we found only one useful source: the aforementioned Forbes report, with a corporate training market size figure that roughly (but not precisely) corroborates the data in the Training Industry report.

After employing these three approaches, our results were somewhat inconclusive. Two separate industry analyses arrived at disparate market size figures, and demonstrate different market growth rates in recent years. As such, we have provided data from both of these analyses above, along with supplemental data from other relevant reports found in the course of our research.
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US Corporate Training Market: Competitors

Three major competitors of Hone are BrainShark, MindFlash, and NovoEd. Each of these companies is a startup offering some form of a virtual corporate training platform featuring some form of blended learning, although the specific offerings vary somewhat between companies. Below, we have provided an overview of each company's offerings, its total funding amount (as revenues were not available in the public domain), several of its clients, and how the companies compare in terms of offerings and funding, followed by an explanation of our research methodology.


  • Like Hone, BrainShark's main selling point is its unique, "comprehensive platform." However, unlike Hone, customers of BrainShark are asked to author their own training content, instead of receiving it from an outside expert. BrainShark's platform purportedly offers customers a varied but easy-to-use content authoring features, complete with robust video instruction options.
  • BrainShark has currently accumulated $20.9 million in total funding, with its last round of funding being Series C.
  • The company provides numerous testimonials from companies that have successfully utilized its product. These companies include BTG, Riverbed, Colonial Life, Cleo, and Avid, among others.
  • As described above, BrainShark does not actually offer courses, but instead offers a comprehensive suite of course-designing materials. Instead of offering "instructors and coaches [who] are experts in their fields" like Hone does, BrainShark allows companies to design their own training programs for a focused, job-specific training experience. Aside from this, the means by which content is delivered, and the ways to observe and measure the fruits of that delivery, are largely similar between the two platforms.
  • Both Hone and BrainShark offer video instruction methods. Also, like Hone, BrainShark offers a robust set of analytics and reporting features to measure the results of training.
  • In terms of funding, BrainShark's $20.9 million currently dwarfs Hone's $3.6 million. It has also accumulated the most funding of any company in this set, more than Mindflash and NovoEd.


  • MindFlash's selling point appears to be the flexibility of its learning management system (LMS). It is entirely online, allowing for ease of access "from home, at the office, or in the field."
  • MindFlash has currently accumulated $12.5 million in total funding, with its last round of funding being venture.
  • The clients listed on the company's website include some highly notable names, such as Apple, Uber, Microsoft, Kellogg's, Johnson & Johnson, PBS, Dyson, and Samsung.
  • Like BrainShark, MindFlash does not appear to offer courses, but rather a platform on which companies can author their own courses specific to business processes within the company, such as onboarding. Still, like Hone, MindFlash features a "blended learning platform," integrating various training methodologies to produce a superior training experience. Companies can build "multi-media courses, including videos, narration, and interactive quizzes" to complete their designated training objectives.
  • Like Hone and BrainShark, MindFlash also offers a suite of analytics features, with "unlimited historical data on employees and courses," allowing companies to "monitor the impact of mobile training on cost, revenue, and profitability with access to real-time reports."
  • In terms of funding, MindFlash has currently accumulated nearly four times that of Hone, and nearly three times that of NovoEd, although BrainShark has currently accumulated about $8 million more than MindFlash.


  • NovoEd's selling point appears to be its social features. It uniquely allows for "social, collaboration, and mobile capabilities" which purportedly "deliver a more engaging learning experience."
  • NovoEd has currently accumulated $4.8 million in total funding, with its last round of funding being Series A.
  • The company provides numerous client names on its websites, with some notable names among them including Comcast, KraftHeinz, GE, Fidelity, and The Clorox Company.
  • Like BrainShark and MindFlash, NovoEd appears primarily to be a platform on which companies author company-specific training sessions. However, NovoEd does offer "customized training calls/webinars" that can be scheduled at a company's convenience. Additionally, it offers expert review and facilitation guidance when creating courses, to ensure that the courses are optimized before implementation.
  • NovoEd's actual product appears to be slightly different in nature from BrainShark, MindFlash, or Hone, in that it is less lecture-based and more of an iterative, social experience. Nonetheless, all of these companies share many common features. They are all virtual platforms offering a variety of training methodologies (i.e., blended learning), and each offers some form of analytics and/or reporting function to examine and track the success of the training program.
  • In terms of funding, NovoEd is slightly outpacing Hone, but is lagging behind BrainShark and MindFlash.

Your research team employed the following strategy:

To identify three major competitors of Hone, as well as these companies' main selling points, revenues, clients, and courses, we first sought to identify significant companies operating in the same space as Hone. Several such companies were already identified in the early findings portion of the research:

We further identified three additional companies operating in this space:

After gathering the names of these companies, we sought to identify three which could be best described as "major competitors" to Hone. This meant that the identified companies would have to be as close to true competitors of Hone as possible (i.e., while perhaps not offering the exact same product, offering something resembling the virtual, blended learning training suite that is Hone's selling point). After examining the offerings of all the assembled companies, it was determined that BrainShark, MindFlash, and NovoEd have offerings most similar (though not identical) to Hone's.

Upon selecting these companies, it was determined that none of these companies are public, and as such none release their revenue publicly. To confirm this, we conducted three research strategies in an attempt to find revenue data for each identified company. First, we conducted a search of the company's website and any associated company-released documents, such as press releases. Second, we conducted a search of business databases, such as D&B Hoovers and Crunchbase. Third, we conducted a third-party press search.

For each identified company, none of these approaches yielded any concrete revenue data. Estimates provided by Owler were found, but since this data is generally considered to be of dubious accuracy, we instead utilized total funding received as a metric by which to compare them (as all are startups). Using Crunchbase, we identified the current funding level and funding round for each company. We then conducted a search of the company's websites and associated materials to provide a breakdown of their offerings and clients. Since no revenue data could be found, we provided their total funding amounts instead.
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US Corporate Training Market: Trends

In the US corporate training space, traditional methods still make up a substantial portion of total training hours, but are rapidly being either supplanted by, or integrated with, newer training methodologies, primarily those delivered by electronics. Trends in this space include the increasing popularity of virtual instruction, the prevalence and influence of AI and automation, and the rapidly-spreading mixed-modality style of training. Below is a complete breakdown of our findings on these subjects.

US corporate training industry: traditional methods vs. new offerings

  • Training Magazine, a professional development industry publication, found in its annual corporate training industry report that "some 69.3 percent of hours were delivered with blended learning techniques, up significantly from 34.7 percent last year."
  • Blended learning techniques include some combination of traditional classroom instruction, virtual webcast-style lessons, online/computer-based methods, mobile device-based methods, and/or social learning methods. More generally, it is the "marrying of e-learning and instructor-led training to create a learning experience."
  • eLearning, or the practice of "utilizing electronic technologies to access educational curriculum outside of a traditional classroom," is becoming increasingly popular in the context of corporate training, likely due to its myriad educational and efficiency benefits.
  • Meanwhile, Training Magazine data reveal that traditional instructor-led classroom-style training is on the decline, as 35.5% of corporate training hours in 2018 represented this style of training with no supplemental eLearning techniques, down from 42% the prior year. Thus, traditional methods remain fairly prevalent, but are on the decline, increasingly encroached upon by newer eLearning offerings.

US corporate training trends

1. Virtual instruction via a remote instructor is growing in popularity as traditional instruction declines.
  • As mentioned above, traditional classroom training by itself is on the decline in America's businesses. Meanwhile, companies are more and more frequently turning to eLearning methods, either by themselves or in conjunction with traditional methods, and one of the most popular eLearning methods is virtual instruction.
  • Virtual instruction allows corporations to access the gains in efficiency that are associated with eLearning in the corporate training space while maintaining some elements of traditional training.
  • A survey by corporate training publication Training Industry found that "86% of virtual classroom participants rated the experience as 'just as engaging' or 'more engaging than' traditional training methods," and all participants were highly satisfied with the experience.
  • Additionally, this survey found that virtual instruction participants scored slightly better than traditional classroom participants on a skills test.

2. AI and automation are increasingly significant factors in the corporate training space.
  • New learning experience platforms (LXPs) are leveraging AI to provide a more focused and efficient corporate training experience, using "experience API, artificial intelligence and machine learning to aggregate data and curate personalized content."
  • Across all areas of corporate life, including training, automation is leading to the "decrease of low value actions and the increase of multitasking by associates who will have to work on many tasks and eventually become 'universal employees.'"
  • Thus, as automation spurs efficiency, employees will be required to complete an increasingly diverse set of tasks, posing a training challenge as frequent, focused training will be required. At the same time, AI is creating the capabilities to "quickly analyze learning data to reskill the workers" whose jobs are being made more complex or redundant as a result of these changes.

3. Mixed, highly-focused training modalities are becoming the new norm.
  • One of the most critical factors when considering which corporate training methods to employ is that the chosen methods should not be a "perceived conflict between doing a job and taking time to be trained for the job."
  • Thus, corporate leaders are increasingly gravitating toward mixed training modalities to increase the focus and efficiency of training. As mentioned above, Training Magazine found that mixed training methods (combining two or more types of training) spiked in popularity in 2018, jumping over 30 percentage points in usage.
  • This change is reflected in the opinions of professionals in this space, "70 percent [of whom] say multiple modalities are crucial to training."

Your research team employed the following strategy:

To determine how traditional methods and new offerings make up the current corporate training market, and find notable trends with in this market, we conducted a wide-ranging search focusing on industry publications and relevant media sources. We utilized data from noted industry authorities in conjunction with expert opinion from those within the industry to assemble the findings provided above.

Did this report spark your curiosity?


From Part 02