In an online poll of interns, CareerExposure.com found that 94 percent of employers offered full-time positions within the organization to interns upon completion of their internship.
"Internships are the ideal interview tool," JillXan Donnelly, president of CareerExposure.com, said in a prepared statement announcing the poll results. "Employers have the opportunity to evaluate potential new hires and determine if the candidate is a good fit for the organization. At the same time, interns can use the experience to make great contacts, challenge their thinking outside the classroom and evaluate a company. The survey results point to internships as a ‘must do’ for employers and job candidates."
More than 95 percent of the respondents indicated that their internship helped accelerate their career by providing an opportunity to obtain relevant work experience and make connections in their industry of choice. Respondents overwhelmingly agreed that internships provide real-world experience regarding a respective industry and/or organization, allowing interns and employers to determine a fit prior to making an official commitment. Interns have the opportunity to differentiate themselves from the pool of recent college graduates seeking employment, while organizations can incorporate the new ideas interns contribute based on their recent learning.
Interns who responded to the survey offered their advice to employers on creating the perfect internship. Their top three tips include:
- Connect interns with mentors. Make sure that every intern has a specific contact within the company to help them successfully navigate the organization quickly and effectively. Remember, interns are only at the company for a short period of time.
- Be clear on expectations. From day one, make sure the interns know what is expected of them during the internship and how they fit into your organization. And, as the internship comes to an end, take the time to debrief them so you both know if they met the mark.
- Make the most of the internship. Keep in mind that internships should benefit your organization, as well as the career development of the intern. Assign meaningful projects that allow the intern an opportunity to make a contribution and offer a fresh perspective to provide greater benefit to your organization.