As a startup, you need to do everything you can with very few resources. The less you spend, the more profit you make and the better chance you have to make it long-term.
However, you have to balance that reality with another one. You need talented people on your team! You can’t afford to cut corners so much that you can’t attract or retain skilled people in your company.
Hiring interns can help you bridge the gap. You’ll get excellent, talented help without having to pay the full salary and benefits that a normal employee will expect. Even better, the intern will gain experience that will be very valuable to their future.
Of course, there are other reasons and here are some of the best.
Interns Boost Your Productivity
If you still think of interns as college kids who go get coffee for the office, it’s time to update your thinking. In my work with Hunter Talent, I’ve worked with young adults who are some of the most passionate, hard-working people I know. And no, I don’t know anything about their coffee buying skills.
A high-quality intern can contribute to your vital projects right away. They often bring creative, out-of-the-box thinking that can benefit your company as you grow. An intern can also handle side-projects that can make a big difference while your employees do core work.
When you hire interns, you’re getting a capable worker who can contribute today. That’s a great benefit!
You Need Highly-Motivated Workers
An intern knows that their work for you will give them a huge boost in the future. Having a high-quality internship on their resume helps them get the attention of top employers when they graduate.
As a result, they’re excited to work for you. Unlike typical employees — 20 percent of whom are disengaged — interns are happy to be there. That means they’ll do better work and require less supervision than other staff.
Every startup needs highly-motivated, talented people. Hiring an intern can give you a low-cost way to meet that goal.
You’re Helping Create a Better Workforce
Working for a startup is very unlike working for another kind of business. When you hire interns, you’re helping future employees gain a new perspective on work and how companies operate. They will take this mindset with them into the workforce full-time.
Startups need to be agile and work quickly to respond to the market. They’re also actively engaged in researching the target market and using innovative marketing outreach methods. Your intern will learn all of this, and more, from working with you.
When you have a startup internship at your company, you’re helping create workers who think big, are flexible, and are aware of the market.
You Can Preview Potential Employees
Finding top talent is hard, and having an efficient hiring process is essential. Your internship can be a key part of your hiring program.
Startup internship programs allow you to bring in potential full-time employees on a temporary basis. This allows you to see what they can contribute and how passionate they are before you commit to a full-time salary and benefits.
The price of a bad hire is huge. You lose productivity, money and have to start the hiring process over. Why not work with someone for a few months to determine if they are a good fit before you move forward?
With an internship, it’s easy to do.
Young People are Tech-Savvy
Startups need to take advantage of technology every day. While you probably have a pretty good grasp of the tools you need, there’s always more to learn. One of the advantages of hiring interns is that they know more about technology than you do.
Young people have been raised using technology every day and for every purpose. They’re more aware of the latest apps and how people are communicating right now.
Your expertise might be five, ten, or even more years old. Theirs isn’t. They know what’s working today because they use it in their daily lives.
Also, the interns you work with might be more aware of your target market than you are, especially if you target young people. Let them help with brainstorming and marketing strategies. You’ll be amazed at what they come up with.
Internships Allow You to Give Back
Mentoring people is something that many business owners would love to do, but they feel they don’t have the time. I know I love the opportunities I have to mentor. It helps me give back and honour those who helped me.
An internship program at your startup may be just what you’re looking for. You can have young people onsite, making a difference in your company. At the same time, you’ll be able to teach them and show them what leadership looks like.
If you’re looking for a chance to meet with young people and help them understand what it takes to be an entrepreneur, this could be the answer. You never know who you will inspire and what they’ll go on to create!
Hiring Interns is a Win For Everyone
College students need real-world experience to balance their academic learning. That’s why so many colleges encourage internships and so many companies offer them.
Hiring interns allows you to get a talented person on your team who can contribute from day one. They can participate in brainstorming, help plan marketing, and keep you up to date on new technologies.
Even better, you’ll be able to give back to your community while helping create better future employees. You can teach a young person about entrepreneurship and pass along the lessons you’ve learned. You may even find that an intern becomes your best new employee.
Businesses benefit a great deal from hiring interns, and the interns learn a lot as well. If you've thought about starting an internship program at your company, go for it. You won't regret it!
Adam Jacobs is the incredibly busy Managing Director of Bubblegum Casting and Hunter Talent. He works with some of Australia’s biggest brands, media properties and agencies to secure talented children to work in Television, Film and Modelling roles. They’ve recently launched an office in LA as well.
My LinkedIn here: