Hiring an intern can have many advantages, especially for small and medium businesses. Not only will this improve your company’ reputation and help make your life easier, but it will also give you tremendous satisfaction, knowing you have contributed to someone’s career growth. Plus, you never know when you can find your next big star.
Young people nowadays have brilliant minds and come with a fresh and different perspective, which can improve your business in ways you can’t imagine. But in order for this to happen, you need to find the best of the best. You need someone you can rely on, someone who is willing to learn and will let you mentor them. But where can you find these talented people?
Determine the ideal candidate
Previous students who have showed that they are hard-working, committed to projects they are involved in and are proactive in their approach are always a good place to start. An example of this are students who participate in cambridge summer schools. Summer schools are an extracurricular academic summer activity which only the most proactive and ‘switched-on’ students decide to attend. This often shows employers that they are always looking to further their knowledge and grow into their role as they learn more and more.
The easiest way to scout for interns is to reach out to universities and propose a partnership. Most universities have a career office, where students can receive help in finding jobs and internships either during university or after graduation.
Students are aching to find internship programs, so they can gain work experience and get a chance to explore the field they will be working in. Career officers know exactly which student will be interested in your offer and will be able to provide you with a list of names and CVs. Some universities even offer credit for internships, which is another reason students will try to do their best to impress you and get a good recommendation.
Post on Career Websites
Don’t forget about those who are studying far away from home and are coming back during summer. If you limit your search to local universities only, you might miss out on opportunities. Once they come back home, they will be looking for internship opportunities to fill their summer. To reach out to them, make sure you port your offer on career and job websites.
There are also multiple platforms that are specially designed to intermediate businesses and potential interns, so they might be worth a shot as well. Make sure to include all the information about your internship, including benefits and internship period. Some interns are only looking for a short internship, while others are searching for something in the long run, which could lead to a possible future job.
Plan an Event to Scout for Interns
If you have the means to do so, plan an event to present your company to possible interns or employees. There are various ways you can do this and will look incredibly good for your company. Invite some people from the industry as well and let them share bits of their experiences as interns.
You can plan a seminar or a discussion panel, followed by a cocktail event and allow people to get to know your company in a more informal way. Again, discuss with universities and colleges and let them know about your event, so they can inform the students. Share the event on social media, as well as in local or online newspapers. If you invite a well-known speaker, chances are your event will be a success, not only for finding interns, but for boosting the image of your company as well.
Make Use of Social Media
In your business has a website or a social media platform, so make sure you post about your internship program there as well. Young people use social media religiously and there is a high chance they will come across your post and apply.
On your website, you can set up a form that anyone interested can complete. This way, you will have resumes coming to you year-round and plenty of candidates to choose from, when needed. You can give them the option to upload resumes, intent letters and other documents that will help with selecting the best candidates. Then, you can share it on social media every few weeks and invite people to apply.
If you have an active social media account, where you constantly interact with followers, you can post contests as well, where the prize can be an internship with your company. This will challenge people to do their best to impress you, thus helping you find the best-qualified people.
Attend Job Fairs
Although most of the people coming to job fairs are looking for paid jobs, there is a chance you can find interns there as well. If not directly at the fair, maybe through word of mouth. People can see your well-prepared stand and inform their family or friends about your program.
If you also have jobs available, even better. You can find both potential employees, as well as interns. Make sure you are clear about your request and the benefits you are offering, so people understand it is an internship and not a job.
Some job fairs are organized or sponsored by universities or career centers, so building up relationships with them can help get you in. Keep in mind that you might have to pay a fee to set up a stand, so think about the return of investment beforehand.
Ask for Referrals
Sometimes, asking for help from friends, family or employees can go a long way. Let them know you are looking for an inter (or more) and tell them to get back to you if they know someone who might be interested. Everyone knows someone who is either attending university or has a child, niece or cousin in school. Word of mouth is an important tool, so it would only be clever to make use of it.
Additionally, you have another great advantage. If you receive recommendations, this means the people sending out resumes are already pre-screened by people you trust, so the chances to find someone suited for the position are much higher.