With the increasing emphasis on internships as an essential part of your resume, it is no surprise that most companies and organizations, regardless of size, hire interns to work in their offices or in the field. There are many reasons that a company might want to have an intern among them.
Some sources indicate that more than half of employers plan on hiring summer internships. But why are all of these companies clamoring to hire inexperienced workers?
According to a manager at NYC non-profit, "Often times, we have interns requesting a position with us that we don’t necessarily have, but we keep them in mind when a project comes through that isn’t top priority for paid staff. Our graduate interns usually spend time doing data collection and research which is extremely useful, but is too time consuming for a program person with direct service responsibilities."
Regardless of the prestige of your office program, many in the office will treat you like a worker bee, and give you tasks that no one else in the company has time to do.
In addition to the tasks to be done, many employers will see the internship as a long hiring process, and having young people in the office can create a culture of mentoring and coaching, getting staff buy-in to the corporation’s message even before they are hired, which will (ideally) result in the kind of longevity and commitment that employers are looking for in their employees.
Another intern coordinator, this one from the world of corporate real estate, has similar ideas about interns: "We get 4-5 interns every summer, and in the first year we have them file, copy, collate, data entry…but eventually they are going to meetings and seeing the deals close. There is definitely a hierarchy and we weed interns out through the years so that we have someone to hire at the end."
For many progressive companies, the idea of low-cost labor and long-term hiring come second to a very important thing that interns bring: fresh perspective. Interns fall into the target audience of 18-24 year olds for many of the products and services that accompany jobs in the computer and media world. This means that many PR firms, advertising agencies and other media relations firms will hire groups of interns that will serve as an almost captive test audience for products and campaigns. Even outside of media. Companies benefit from seeing things through the eyes of the younger generation, a generation who will not only be buying what they are selling for years to come, but will eventually take over the business entirely.
Employers hire interns for many reasons, but the main point is that they do hire them. By looking into becoming an intern, you are opening yourself up to a world of experience, while also helping a company achieve its goals.