September 13, 2021 | By Kevin Gray
TAGS: best practices, internships, compensation, operations, nace insights, talent acquisition
Spotlight for Recruiting Professionals
In recent weeks, talent acquisition professionals have provided insight on topics around internships—such as converting interns to FTEs, internship duration, intern housing, and fall/spring internships—in the NACE Community. Here is a roundup of the information and ideas they have shared:
Conversion to FTEs—One organization noted that its teams may convert interns to FTEs by transfers. The interns do not interview or apply for the FTE role, and there is no competing applicant pool. Once conversion is approved, the intern simply transfers in the HR management system from their temporary role to their new permanent role. The recruiting team works with the hiring manager and HR partner to determine compensation, start date, relocation bonus (if eligible), and more. The organization tries to complete these conversions before the end of the summer program. If teams need more time, they are allowed to extend the internship. The organization makes sure to keep the intern active to avoid the loss of system access and generation of a new background check.
Internship duration—While there was no consensus on a standard duration of summer internship programs, there did seem to be some general agreement that longer—between 10 and 12 weeks—is better. However, one respondent whose organization, which partners with global employers, has found that eight-week internships work best for the students in its program. This duration, she says, allows time for students to finish up their spring semester and for employers to have a short vacation before internships begin. On the other hand, responding organizations with 11- and 12-week summer programs feel that duration allows interns enough time to complete their projects, attend events, network, and learn about the organization and their business group. No matter their duration, another respondent points out, internship programs need to be long enough to give the students “real exposure to the company, and the company [real exposure] to them.”
Intern housing—One company offers interns relocation assistance if they live more than 50 miles from their office location. A program manager within HR works with a vendor to manage intern housing. The company also reimburses travel up to $750 and puts interns up in an extended stay hotel. Another employer offers all interns student housing. If interns are located at a corporate office, they are housed at a local university in a four-bed apartment with other interns. If they are located at a plant, they are offered a lump sum and assistance from a rental services firm to find summer housing. Both these respondents report that the relocation assistance they provide to their interns is in addition to the interns’ wages has no impact on their hourly rate. A career services practitioner also weighed in and said that, in her experience, it works best when a company gives interns a housing stipend that is not deducted from the rate of pay the intern receives and lets them decide where to live. She recommends the organization provide a list of properties that would work well for interns, especially if the organization is recruiting interns who are not local.
Fall/spring internship programs—A program manager in university recruiting says that her company runs a small fall/spring internship program and shared several key lessons they learned from that experience as compared to a summer internship program:
Do you have ideas to share or want more information about internship programs? Join the discussion in the NACE Community.
Average percent of eligible interns converted to FTE
2022 Internship & Co-op Survey Report
Percent of interns who are female versus percent of student population that is female
2022 Internship & Co-op Survey Report
Mean hourly rate for bachelor’s-level interns
2022 Guide to Compensation for Interns and Co-ops
Average number of full-time recruiters per recruiting department
2021 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey Report
Percentage of employers who screen candidates by GPA
Job Outlook 2022 Spring Update