Hiring employees is a key way to grow your business. But, don’t neglect the value of an intern. Here’s how to hire an intern for your small business.

Why Hire Interns For Your Small Business?

Hiring an intern for your small business can translate into big gains for your company. It may offer great R.O.I. and profitability. That’s why you must choose the right one.

Download MileIQ to start tracking your miles »

More Benefits of Hiring an Intern

Qualified interns can provide the following benefits to today’s resource-challenged business owner:

  • Cost Savings: Hiring an intern can help boost your productivity with minimal damage to your budget.
  • A bigger bottom line: Interns typically work without costly health benefits and other perks. Not to mention, some work for free or for lower wages.
  • Enhanced Productivity: Interns provide extra labor that leads to more production.

Tips For Getting The Best Interns

Accurately assess your needs before you start looking for an intern. Interns bring an array of skill sets, work experiences and educational backgrounds. The proper fit is crucial.

Do you want someone who’s social media savvy? A tech person who is familiar with software to manage your website? Or perhaps you want a worker who can handle administrative functions?

Your corporate needs will dictate what type of worker you look for and where you would search. These are things to take into consideration.  Remember, being clear improves your chances of connecting with the most qualified individuals.

It’s convenient to have interns on hand to handle “gofer” duties. And many times, they can be relied upon to randomly “fill in as needed.”

Yet, aim to create a win/win situation for all parties. Do this by setting clear, consistent, task-based guidelines.

Don’t Forget About Social Media

In this Internet era, employers can learn a lot about potential employees from their online activities. For a more well-rounded, successful search, do some background research to identify potential “red flags.”

In other words, what kind of presence or online image does the candidate have? Does he/she bad-mouth former employers? Display distasteful photos on Facebook? Have interests or activities that would reflect poorly on your company’s core values? Due diligence is important.

Find The Right Job Board

To find the best suited person with minimal time, effort and expense, post your open position in the best forum. Use a job board dedicated to your specific professional needs or industry.

Here are a few examples:

  • Dice features positions in the tech field
  • Internships.com is dedicated to positions in the non-profit sector
  • eFinancial is for numbers crunchers and bean counters

Should You Pay Your Intern?

The thought of unpaid labor is always appealing but be sure to follow labor laws. If you decide to pay your intern, be sure to follow your local minimum wage laws.

Hire Interns Interested In Your Field

Related interest can often lead to higher performance levels; workers who enjoy their duties tend to execute with greater enthusiasm. Passion yields positive results.

Get Recommendations

Beyond credentials reflected on a resume, recommendation letters can help employers identify other important traits that lead to workplace success.

These desired traits for interns include, (but are not limited to):

  • Reliability
  • Trustworthiness
  • Punctuality
  • Honesty
  • Maturity

What to Avoid When Hiring Interns

Here are some things to avoid:

  • Hiring without a strategic approach or clearly established criteria
  • Waiting to the last minute to hire
  • Hiring your neighbor’s kid out of desperation
  • Failing to include key members of your staff in the decision-making process.

Last Thoughts On Hiring Interns

When interns are hired correctly and properly trained, they often stay on board. They can develop into contributing, valuable staff members. This has long-term benefits. It can save you time and expenses on future staffing needs.

So, choose carefully and wisely.

Download MileIQ to start tracking your miles »

Mike Hanski

Mike Hanski

Mike Hanski writes and creates content assets for various online businesses. Feel free to say hi to Mike at Google+
Mike Hanski

Latest posts by Mike Hanski (see all)