Starting an “Internship Program” isn’t an easy thing to do. Is it? Not exactly. It’ll need proper planning, budgeting and experience to do it in right way. So if you are going to plan an internship program in near future, here are some steps you must follow–
- Step 1 – Create a purpose statement defining your goals: First define why you are planning an internship program. What is your strategy behind it? Are you interested in promoting the business, getting more done, innovation, social responsibility? What do you want to get out of it exactly and what do you want your interns to get out of it.
- Step 2 – Decide what kind of program you are going to offer: Remember that, your actions are going to reflect your organization. You are responsible in creating both positive and negative image. You must decide what you are going to offer your interns, is it a remote internship or not, which degrees interns must have, what is your budget etc.
- Step 3 – Create a timeline: Timelines will change depending on requirements, but they will help you have time to plan, recruit, and prepare for intern arrival. There is nothing worse than recruiting and understanding you are too late for the best candidates.
- Step 4 – Develop assignments: Assignments are one of the most important choices you will make in an internship. Those assignments should be relevant to your organization and fit to intern’s capabilities yet challenging enough so that interns do not loose interest.
- Step 5 – Create a budget: Internship programs will need budget. Are you providing housing, food, events, excursions, snacks? What are you paying for? When you create your budget remember interns are unpredictable so you need at least a 20% buffer for unpredicted expenses.
- Step 6 – Recruit: Recruiting starts whenever you think interns are needed. You may choose to use local job sites, contact local universities, use word of mouth, put it on social media or put your internships on your website it is up to you and how many interns you are interested in hiring. There are also international sites you can add your listings to.
- Step 7 – Evaluate: It is a good idea to make sure you have some statistics about how many places you recruited from, where the interns found your ad or heard about you. How many interviews did you take and how well did the interview procedure go? Were there any interns that accepted and then decided not to be part of the program? Why did that happen? Try to answer all these question. It’ll help the next recruitment process.
Once you are done with these steps you will have a pretty good skeleton for your internship program that you can refine as you go.
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Nishat Tabassum Tamanna
Admin & HR Intern