When you are designing your Training Manual there are four main ways of presenting your manual.
Wire bound (or spiral bound)
The way you decide to bind the manual depends on the way you run your training course and how you want to present your documents. Another factor to consider is how long you are expecting your delegates to keep the manuals. If the manual is going to be used for only the duration of the course, or for a short time afterwards then a different style of binding would be better than if the manual is to be kept for future long term use.
Another factor to consider is how much the course is going to be used whilst on the training course.
If the book is to lay flat and also if your delegates need to add more pages to the manual.
We have detailed the most popular binding options below and discussed the pros and cons of each style of binding.
This is the most popular binding option for training manuals. The metal ring on the manual keeps the manual held together tightly. It’s great for longevity and it will also lay flat on a desk. If the manual is to be written inside a matt paper is preferable, although a silk stock will work with a biro.
Tabs can be added at production stage for easy access to chapters.
Wire-binding is cost effective and usually an acetate front cover and card back is added to the manuals to make them more hard wearing.
Pros: Hard Wearing
Lays flat on a desk
Easy to turn pages
Tabs can be added
Cons: Not as professional looking as Perfect Bound
Pages cannot be added once the manual has been produced
Coil Bound Manuals:
Not as popular as wire-binding, perfect binding or ring bound manuals but a favourite for some clients. A metal coil is wound through the manuals to keep the pages in place. Again pages cannot be added to the manual, although they do stand out as they are not as widely used as other methods of binding training manuals.
Pros: They stand out when handing out
Pages cannot be added once produced
Lays flat on a desk
Easy to use
Tabs can be added
Cons: Generally more expensive to produce than wire-binding
Not as professional as perfect bound
Pages cannot be added once produced (also a pro in some instances)
Perfect Bound Manuals
These are also referred to as a ‘paper back’ book, or ‘soft cover’ binding. The perfect binding does look very professional and gives a published look to the manuals. There is a spine to perfect bound manuals, so they are great for putting on a book shelf. Perfect bound books are usually kept as a resource after the course has finished. However perfect bound books only work for books with a larger amount of pages. They are also not great for keeping flat on a desk, as they tend to close up.Because pages are glued into the spine images or text near the middle of the manual is hard to read and can even get lost as the pages bow.
Pros: They can be kept afterwards
They look professional
Cons: They do not lay flat.
They only work for manuals with a certain number of pages.
Perfect Bound Manuals are not good for heavy usage
Can be costly if printed
Difficult to add tabs
Ring Bound Manuals:
A very popular option for training manual printing is to have your manuals drilled and added to ring binders. Ring binders can be printed. For a more cost effective option is to have a cover and spine inserted into binders with pockets. The Training Manuals do lie extremely flat. However the pages are not as easy to turn if flicking between pages regularly.
Pages can be added afterwards, and pages can also be taken out. This can be both a pro and a con. If you want your delegates to use the training manual regular afterwards and add more sections in the future then this is recommended. However ring bound manuals are also more bulky and are not as easy to transport in a suitcase or small bag.
Pros: Sections or modules can be added afterwards
Ring Binders can be re-used for other courses afterwards
Ring Bound Manuals lay flat on a desk
They are also sturdy and hard wearing
Tabs can be added if needed.
Cons: More expensive than wire-binding
Bulky and not as easy to travel with
For samples of the various binding options please click on the links above. If you have any questions or are not sure what will be best suited for your course please feel free to call or e-mail one of our Account Managers and they will be more than happy to discuss options and offer advice to you.