Having a business in Massachusetts or the New England area means close proximity to institutions of higher education sitting at your doorstep. The large pool of college and high school interns is a potential boon for your business in both the short and long term.
Internships have benefits for both the business hosting the internship program and for the individual interns themselves. Interns gain valuable experience, develop and refine skills, network with future job prospects, and explore a career path with real-world understanding.
What is an Internship?
An intern is usually a rising professional who agrees to work in a business under the close eye of a mentor in either a paid or unpaid capacity. Interns are generally college students, high school students, graduate students, or career change adults, looking to gain valuable experience in a field and “get their foot in the door” for future employment.
With guided supervision, an intern learns the goals of a business, skills needed to move forward, and the ins and outs of a company in their field of student or interest.
Benefits of Internships for Businesses
Businesses also gain some advantages that pay off immediately and later on. Let’s explore what internship programs are and some of the ways that internships in your small or medium-sized business will help your company grow.
New & Fresh Perspective
One of the things that many businesses notice once they adopt an intern or an internship program is that the candidates inherently bring with them a fresh perspective on the business. Remember that interns are coming from a place of learning where they are used to solving problems, using new skills, and looking ahead to what technology might be on the horizon. That attitude can be contagious if you let it.
Expand Your Employee Pool
A strong internship program can be a priceless recruiting tool. Many interns choose to remain at a company after the internship ends. According to Chegg Internships, “At the one-year mark, interns who become full-time employees are almost 30% more likely to still be at your company than are other full-time hires.”
For businesses suffering staffing challenges, having access to talented candidates that already know and understand your company culture and goals can be a huge benefit!
Low Cost/No Cost Labor
Internships can be configured in many ways. They can be full or part-time as well as paid and unpaid. Internships can be a cost-saving measure for businesses that need a little bit of extra help without hiring a fully skilled candidate. It is a win-win situation with businesses gaining a low or no-cost position and candidates gaining valuable experience.
Foster Leadership Skills within the Company
Having an intern means that someone from within your business has taken this person under their wing. They show this person the ropes, teach them skills and mentor them for the entirety of their time as an intern. That mentor gains leadership skills through that interaction.
Close the Skills Gap
We often hear about a skills gap that businesses face in regards to technology. Interns often naturally bring with them technical skills on new software and newer devices, and a desire to learn new skills. This energy can help your current employees close the technical skills gap by using the experience to learn from interns as well as vice versa.