Business competes on price, with each school developing its own tuition fee schedule. Some Business is eligible for Title IV government funding, which means that a portion of students receive financial assistance from the federal government to pay tuition. This reduces the cost of tuition fees, therefore giving them a competitive advantage.
Business certification schools tend to service local students, therefore competition is highly regionalized. However, this is expected to reduce over time as an increasing number of schools (predominantly large schools) offer courses via the internet and other distance-education methods. For example, Learning Tree International introduced its Business Plan Online service in 2009, allowing people to attend classes and lectures remotely.The main factors that may prevent new players from joining the industry include course development and accreditation costs, and a moderate level of regulation. While the largest players do not occupy a significant amount of market share, reputation is important and takes time to build. Large institutions often have the upper hand in this respect, as new schools often face difficulties in attracting students.
Business also competes on the quality of training that they provide, and their relevance to requirements of the business community. The reputation of the institution among the target market and potential employers is important. If graduates find employment easily upon completion of their studies, this reflects well on the school have different needs. Many Business Plan Online seeks seek training that can be scheduled around work and family commitments while large companies are more likely to need a predictable schedule. Corporate clients may also require training in their own facilities. Clients also select training providers based on their available range of courses. This is also a common reason for companies to outsource their training, rather than conducting it in house. Junior colleges, universities and other specialist schools compete for people pursuing education degrees. The Junior Colleges, in particular, may attract students away from this industry, as they promote associate degrees in IT and business. Over time, certification schools have lost enrolment to these institutions as students have sought the higher qualifications that they offer. Overall, the trend of more students obtaining associate and undergraduate degrees has hurt demand for industry services.
Employment in secretarial and administrative professions, in particular, is expected to grow as fast as the average for all occupations, over the next ten years, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, the role of administrative assistant has expanded over time, and today many individuals in this position possess undergraduate degrees. Furthermore, many young professionals, who enter the workforce today, are already proficient in software programs such as desktop publishing and creating PowerPoint presentations. Industry operators also compete with the internal training departments of companies and organizations. Similarly, IT certification schools face competition from computer hardware and software companies who provide training.