Companies hire interns for a variety of reasons—they have a project they need to get done, it helps an employee’s child gain experience, or it is good for the community. More recently, companies have also begun hiring interns to build the talent pipeline. Students are hired to learn about the organization, processes, and gain work experience along the way. Employers gain insight to how the intern works, the skills the individual brings to the workplace, as well as work ethic—like a long interview.
At the same time, interns are interviewing the employer. They get a feel for your organization’s values and the growth opportunities at your company. Managers are key to the experience, so it is important that the manager play an active role. It is important to think about what you want your interns to say around the dinner table with family and to friends at school when asked, “How is your internship going?”