Securing an internship let alone your dream internship can be a daunting task. From the preparation of a resume to the application process that culminates into an interview, one can easily give up before starting. I am neither an expert on the concepts of human resource management nor an internship guru, far from it. But, I do believe in the wealth of wisdom that experience generates.
So here are a few tips to secure you an internship.
Yes, this always sounds like a cliché, the all too common phrase ‘time is of the essence’ has been engraved on our DNA. True, time is an important factor towards securing that dream internship. The application process does not end with you sending your resume; the organization must undertake an assessment of your qualifications and consider the opportunities available. This is part of the organizational standard operating procedures that cannot be overlooked. Some organizations have set rules that all interns must apply between one month and three months before starting the internship. In addition, organizations have set dates for internships that require early registration.
A good CV and relevant skills can be rendered useless if you have not been networking. A large percentage of jobs available are never advertised because job seekers are hired by word of mouth. If you want to get into that dream organization, you should start networking. Interestingly, you network on a daily basis whenever you are engaged in intellectual or social conversations. The first place to begin networking is using your contacts; this includes family, friends, former bosses and lecturers. You might be shocked to find out that one of these people knows someone who might just easily secure you that internship.
This may sound tedious but can go a long way in securing you that internship. Personal visits can assist you in convincing the organization that you are the perfect fit. Explain to them why you chose the organization and how invaluable your contribution can be. Always insist that you want to talk to the human resource director. If you consider yourself a convincing individual then you should give this approach a shot.
If you apply for an internship and don’t receive a response within the stipulated time, you should follow up with a call or personal visit. Your insistence might be an indicator of your determination to work with the organization. I know a few people who have secured an internship by simply following up on the word of the human resource director.
Frequently visit the organization’s website
Yes, if you are interested in a particular organization, you should make it your case study. Understand its goals and modes of operation. From time to time organizations advertise for jobs and internships on their websites. In addition, most organizations now offer an internship program that requires you to be registered to their website recruitment program or forms. They also highlight their requirements such as letter of motivation, insurance or certificate of good conduct. If you miss these details your application is rendered obsolete.
These are the main issues you should consider in your application process. If you are still searching, you should consider some of the county government offices and ministries which are always looking for interns.