NAPW Business Forum: Make It a Win-Win! Tips for Hiring and Managing Interns

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Yes, it’s that time of year again… when large corporations, startups and small businesses seek out qualified students eager to land an internship and reap some real-world experience. Whether your company has a formal internship program or you are contemplating hiring an intern for the first time, the experience can be a win-win for both the intern and the employer. In fact, a recent survey conducted by Internships.com found that 85% of employers said that hiring interns was a positive experience and 86% of students said that their experience as an intern was also positive.

To ensure your internship endeavor goes just as well, follow these tips for hiring and managing interns this summer:

  1. Visit the U.S. Department of Labor  to familiarize yourself with The Fair Labor Standards Act so you know your limits regarding the work a paid vs. unpaid intern can be asked to do.
  2. Create a clear job description. Assess your company’s needs and get input from different departments about their intern expectations.
  3. Contact the career services departments at local colleges and universities for qualified candidates.
  4. Assign a mentor to the intern(s). Establish a direct contact so they know who to turn to with questions or concerns.
  5. Include the intern in company meetings; bring her along to sales calls and other industry events. Take her to an NAPW Local Chapter meeting and introduce her to your professional network.
  6. It’s important to give interns feedback, just be sure to ask for their comments as well. Then use this information to ensure your next internship experience is just as positive!

Do you or your company use interns? We’d love to hear from you about your experience with hiring and managing interns. Tell us what you think in the comments section below.