How to begin? Here are some things to consider:
The first step is to clearly establish the purpose of the internship and to begin to define the project. What is your organisation hoping to achieve from the internship? Do you have a specific project for your intern to complete, or will they work on a variety of tasks? Knowing clearly what you want the intern to achieve will help you decide who you are looking for and the skills that are needed.
There are different ways to structure an internship. You may offer a stand-alone project to a single intern or hire a number of interns to work together or in different teams. Tertiaries sometimes offer an ‘internship’ through a paper that the student is undertaking for credit. These are a work integrated learning (WIL) experience rather than an internship where the intern is ’employed’ by you. InternQuest is for employers wanting to employ an intern.
If you want to find out more about WIL, ask a question through the contact box below.
For stories about different internship models click on the blue ‘internship model’ button.
Consider what physical tools the intern will need and how you will supply these. Do you have what will be needed or will anything need to be acquired or purchased? Where will your intern sit? Do you have space, do you have a desk? Cardboard desks can be purchased for a low cost. Your budget will need to include resources and wages for your intern. If you have not hired people before, the Employee Cost Calculator may be useful.
To have a successful internship, your team will need to be on board, particularly those that will be working closely with the intern. An intern will need support and guidance as they come to grips with what may be their first workplace experience. Assigning one of your team to mentor the intern is an important contributor to a successful outcome. Give consideration to who is best placed to mentor the intern and if their workload will allow for it.
Interns need to be challenged with meaningful work. Make sure that the project is big enough for the time period but not dauntingly unachieveable. Project milestones will help the intern to achieve throughout the internship and will help you to monitor how they are progressing.
Do you have requirements that must be met with regard to funding, security measures or policy? For example, some government agencies require New Zealand citizenship to be eligible for a role, others may require police vetting. These factors need to be considered early in the planning process so that you can be sure that you are targeting the best-suited candidates from the start.
Some government funding for internships is available for businesses that carry out R&D. Information about these student grants can be found on the Callaghan Innovation website here or contact us through the contact box below.
Have a plan for what your intern is going to do. Make sure you have appropriate support for them...
This resource was designed and compiled by interns sourced through Summer of Tech 2017.