Internships are an excellent way for students and recent graduates to gain valuable work experience, so if you own a small business, you should take advantage of them.
In this post, we’ll lay out some time-tested strategies for finding internships that will provide your company with fresh talent and new perspectives.
The internet is the great equalizer when it comes to finding internships. Plug a few keywords into Google search, and you’ll come up with a handful of websites dedicated to connecting small businesses with eager interns trying to gain real-world experience.
You can choose from many sites, including LinkedIn, Craigslist, Internships.com, Internmatch, and others.
You will have options for finding interns via the internet. However, there is a big caveat you should be aware of: on every excellent worker you find, there may be 10 useless applicants also looking for an internship with your business.
This is because most people applying for internships have very little work experience. If a recent graduate doesn’t have a proven track record of performance at their job, they are unlikely to be successful in getting an internship with your business.
This strategy is not going to give you the most qualified applicants, but we think that it’s worth doing regardless. College career fairs are a great way to find interns, provided you’re looking for applicants who have work experience.
Online job boards for college students and graduates exist all over the country, but the main ones are:
College Career Fairs / Internships: If your business is located in a state that has a strong economy, applying for an internship at the local college career fair is a very effective way to find candidates. The internship fairs allow you to narrow down your search by location, college, or major.
If you’re using social media to attract business customers, why not use it to find interns? All the major platforms have been trying to broaden their appeal by rolling out new features aimed at small business owners. Social media is a powerful tool for using to attract new customers and potential employees, but no small business owner can afford to ignore the fact that Facebook alone has nearly 1.6 billion users while Twitter has nearly 115 million.
Take advantage of these numbers, and advertise your search for an intern by creating a public profile. Most social media sites will allow you to post photos and update your followers on a regular basis.
Finally, there’s nothing that can replace the skills and talent of a good intern, but job fairs can help you find someone who matches your business needs. Job fairs are a great way to find interns for your small business because they are often attended by multiple companies vying for the same pool of applicants.
You should attend as many job fairs in your area as possible, even if you’re not looking for an intern. This will give you a chance to meet with potential employees, and it will help you build relationships with prominent members of your community.
5.Tech and High schools
If you don’t want to pay a job fair, or if you don’t want to put in a lot of work searching for candidates, there are some alternative options. Most big cities have tech schools that offer summer jobs and internships. Most tech schools will be run by a local high school or university.
If your city doesn’t have a local tech school, all is not lost. You can start your own tech school, and anyone interested in working with your company can attend a class where you’ll teach them about the industry and provide their first on-the-job exposure to your small business.
A similar option is to approach high schools with a strong science or technology background. High schools are always looking for ways to improve their science and math curriculums, and the best way to accomplish this task is through hands-on learning.
If you provide internships in your business, you’ll get the opportunity to expose students to new technology while providing them with both real-world experience and paid work experience.
6.Collaborate with another business
When it comes to finding interns for your small business, you can be as creative as you want. Collaborating with another business is a great way to get people interested in your company while simultaneously helping out a friend or industry colleague.
• Speaking at a college career fair to attract interns for your business
• Representing your company at a local business convention to meet potential candidates
• Collaborating with other businesses in your industry to create a unique study abroad program that can be offered only in the small business
7.Referrals from family and friends
In times when there are so many options for finding great interns, it’s very important to include your family and friends in the search. Who better to find an intern for your small business than those who already know you, trust you, and are more likely to bring out the best in a candidate while they’re working at your company?
It’s important that you treat these potential candidates with the same respect and dignity that they would give anyone else. A lot of people assume that finding an internship will be no harder or more difficult than applying for a job, but this is rarely the case. Your friends and family members have years of experience searching for good candidates, so remember to put them in charge of screening applicants.
In conclusion, there are no right answers when it comes to finding great interns for your small business. Your best option is to take a step back and realize that the most important factor when looking for interns is being able to prove your business met their requirements during their interview.
The only way you can do this is to have a well-written internship application form, which will be dictated by what type of work experience the candidate has.