There are always college students searching for internships. You might have done the same while you were still in school. If you already have a program, your inbox is probably being inundated with applications. If you don't, maybe you're considering one. However, there are a few questions you should keep in mind before you decide to offer up positions to those aspiring workers:
1. Do you have the time?
Internships require a lot of time and effort not just from the student, but the supervisor as well. If you don't have a large company, that overseer just might be you. Interns are searching for these temporary positions to gain real-life work experience, so they might not come into your company with the necessary skills. Internships could require a lot of hands-on training and mentoring, Entrepreneur explained. You'll have to work in time for revisions, questions and basic professional education, such as writing emails. Underestimating the time commitment required could hurt both your company and your intern.
2. Are you willing to hire them after the internship?
If you're not going potentially offer someone a job at the end, hiring interns is pointless. Why teach them about the inner workings of your business if nothing will come of it? They're only there for a short amount of time and you're putting the effort into training them. Give them the opportunity to prove that they can be an asset for your company and prepare to offer them a position if they meet your standards, according to the source. You'll also be able to use them for future networking if you ever need openings filled. If you give your intern a good experience, they'll be willing to connect you to other eager college students and young workers in the future, Inc. explained.
3. Will you pay them?
First, giving your interns money for their help is the kind thing to do. Second, unpaid internships come with a price. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, there are certain requirements you have to meet in order to have free workers, according to the National Federation of Independent Business. Ultimately, the internship is for the benefit of the student, not the business. Your program must be tailored to teach your interns skills that they can use elsewhere and not just at your company. Third, you'll have access to a pool of more qualified workers offering pay as opposed to unpaid internships, where you'll have to teach them. Taking the time to work paid programs into your financial plan will more beneficial in the end.
Internships can be a learning experience for both you and the student. However, it's up to you to decide how the program will work. Before you start recruiting students at college campuses and online job boards, finalize the plans and schedule for the program. If you know how things are going to run before hiring, the internship will go much more smoothly for everyone. They aren't for everyone though, so make sure you're ready for interns before you bring them into your company.