Internships: Pros, Cons, and Tips

Sharon Boyd has nearly 25 years of experience between both the healthcare and marketing industries. In addition to being an RDH and content writing expert, she also holds a degree in business. Her responsibilities primarily include tackling the communication barriers between small business owners or healthcare providers and their prospective clientele.

Internships: Pros, Cons, and Tips

If your business is growing, or you’re not quite able to budget in a new full-time staff member, you might be wondering if the quickest, cheapest, and easiest thing to do is to get an intern.

Internships are great opportunities for individuals who are just beginning to embark on new careers. If they’re looking at getting into a specific field or want to test the waters before committing to a particular area of business, then it’s a win-win for both the student and the company.

Plus, when you hire an intern you can get a trial run to find out if they have the right personality, skills, and work ethic to eventually bring them on as a full-time staff member.

But before you get too excited, there are some important things to know about hiring an intern.

  • Your intern is receiving class credit in their return for participating in the program, so you’ll likely have some paperwork to complete with the sponsoring college or university.
  • Although your intern isn’t technically guaranteed any type of compensation, some laws do require interns to be paid at least minimum wage and are considered to be temp employees, so check with a local employment lawyer in your area.
  • The internship will have to comply with your intern’s academic calendar. In other words, you can’t require them to work when they’re supposed to be in other classes.
  • Your intern understands that even though you’re taking them on, they’re not necessarily guaranteed a job once their internship is completed.

So, where do you look when it comes to finding an intern? Here are a few different options to get started.

Post it to Your Website. Make it public knowledge that you’re accepting internship applications. Just be sure to outline your desired skills, degree plan, and what you have to offer the intern in return for their committing to train with you. This option allows interns to come to you directly.

Use an External Job Posting Site. Since internships are usually paid at a lower market value than specific job roles (yet still at or above minimum wage) you can list the opportunity as a temporary job on popular sites like Monster or Indeed.

Connect with Colleges and Universities. Do you know of an area school that has a great reputation for turning out quality professionals? Or maybe even specific professors that have an eye for identifying great talent in their classrooms? Feel free to reach out to them directly and let them know what you’re looking for. They can likely make a personal referral or set up a formal posting in their student networks.

Pairing up with a great intern can help your business run more efficiently and even give you a great reputation as those individuals eventually go out into other professional environments to begin their careers. Plus, it leaves you with the flexibility that you need to take your business to the next level without breaking the bank.