Internships are amazing opportunities for both companies and interns, but it’s prevalent for organizations to hire interns with little forethought. Some companies hire interns just to get more bodies on a project or to avoid employing a full-time employee. However, not only are internships important to students but they also play a key role in establishing your company as the employer of choice in your industry. For the interns, an internship helps to meet a graduation requirement while providing hands-on work experience. Interns are great because usually, they are eager to work, learn and contribute so misusing their talents can be disengaging for them and a total waste of potential and valuable resources for the company.
It is crucial to put in the time and energy to curate a great internship before you start the recruitment process. This will make sure you’re not scrambling to find something for your intern to do once they report on their first day. In addition, going through the recruitment process discreetly and purposefully heightens your prospects of finding a great fit. Finding a great fit can culminate into a lasting professional relationship.
So what are some of the strategies you can use to ensure you hire interns who can do more than run coffee errands?
Critically analyze the kind of tasks you want the intern to undertake. Ensure that these tasks are in line with their field of study. Also, in your job description, focus on skills rather than experience. Choose a manager or supervisor, preferably someone with a great attitude and performance record, for the intern to report to, learn from, as well as develop the intern.
Ensure you have planned out the logistics for the intern. Things, like which desk, will they sit at, which computer will they use? What other equipment might they need in their role or capacity?
Whether or not to compensate interns is still debatable. However, we all know that people prefer paid internships. Compensation instills a sense of responsibility and motivation in the interns. So always try to issue a reasonable stipend to your interns and watch them do more for your company.
PARTNER WITH INSTITUTIONS FOR RECRUITMENT
All university and college students are required to go for at least one attachment before they graduate. You can liaise with universities, colleges, or other tertiary institutions to get the interns you need. Pick institutions that teach courses or skills in line with your organization’s business model. Thereafter, interview the top picks.
You should onboard your employee just like you would onboard a full-time employee. The onboarding process will enable the intern to know your brand’s mission, vision, and culture. They will know exactly what the company does and how it does it. They will understand better the leadership hierarchy and what chain of command to follow when faced with different challenges.
Your internship program should not be vague; without a clear definition of tasks and responsibilities. If it is so, you should redesign your internship program and learn how to recruit interns who can do more than run office errands.