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5 Best Strategies to Hire Quality Interns for Your Startup

Jessica Robinson


Are you a budding entrepreneur who is looking for hiring quality interns that can add value to your startup? There are ample benefits of hiring young, dynamic, and ambitious interns for your business venture. But the best part is that your startup and the interns you hire are going to share the common goal of growth. Furthermore, in the pursuit of this common goal, when your venture and interns align their efforts, it can spark magic. Also, you might not want to hire full-time paid employees at the very beginning of your entrepreneurial journey. You can rather use your initial capital for other prospects of growth. In such a scenario, hiring quality interns can turn out to be a great business strategy.


Moving further, for the growth of your startup, you continuously seek opportunities from big enterprises. Similarly, students and graduates seek internship opportunities to be able to learn. Further, they desire to diversify their skills and become qualified professionals. So, you can understand as an aspiring businessman how much opportunities mean to people. When you start a business, you also become a job creator who creates as many chances as possible for others. Now, there are enough reasons for you to hire interns for your startup. But the big question is, how can you make sure that you only hire quality interns that add value to your startup.  You need to look for passionate and dedicated people to work for you. While efficient and productive interns can take your venture to places, misfits can delay the progress. 


Before you offer internship programs, you need to have a clear strategy. Because your interns are going to perform relevant for your organisation, there has to be a proper hiring plan in place. Further, defining job roles, designing job responsibilities, stipend budgets make vital parts of this plan. Also, you might want to shortlist relevant eminent institutions or universities as a benchmark to hire graduates. In case you are hiring remote interns, you need to know various tips for successful remote hiring. So, here are some swift strategies that you can put in place to hire interns of quick calibre.

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5 Best Ways to Hire Interns for Your Startup


1. Hire Paid Interns

Monetary remuneration remains one of the most significant factors to boost productivity. So, when you chalk out a plan to hire interns, avoid hiring unpaid interns. The monetary aspect is even more critical when you look to hire interns who are from the best colleges. Furthermore, quality interns know their worth very well and they do not want to settle for internships that do not pay. If you prioritise quality in interns, this quality is going to come at a cost. Although, some people of quality calibre might agree to work without a stipend, over time their motivation deteriorates. Monetary allowances are essential for hiring quality interns as well as maintaining their quality in the longer run. Many journals and articles on the internet explain why unpaid internships are unethical. Imagine if a big company asks your startup to collaborate only for learning and experience without any monetary gains. How are you going to feel about it? Even if you take up the opportunity, can you give your best to it if there is no profit sharing?


Also, interns are happy to receive moderate stipends with little appreciation and encouragement. They do not seek to draw large corporate salaries and are likely to be satisfied with amounts enough for sustenance. Moreover, you add a lot to the reputation of your startup when you offer paid internships. Your firm gains a lot of ground in terms of presence among corporates when you offer paid internships. Also, you can then project your startup as a business venture that gives priority to business ethics.

2. Assess Your Internship Programs 

Feedback is an essential part of assessing any business strategy or corporate practices. So, you should evaluate your internship program, and based on the feedback provided; you should look to modify it. You ought to talk to your interns and ask for their perspectives on the internship module you have set. Further, you ought to test how the internship program is beneficial to interns' learning. You can always keep track of the knowledge and skills your interns are gaining while working with you. Moreover, with constant feedback from your workers, you can design better internship programs for the future.


Not only these interactions on feedback help improve efficiency but also make the interns confident. With this confidence, interns feel empowered to share their ideas and opinions. These ideas and thoughts can be vital for your startup since you are on a learning phase; you also want to learn from your surroundings. When you talk to your team at regular intervals, it also helps create better employee engagement. It inspires a sense of acceptance, belongingness, and self-confidence in interns. So, in this way, based on the experience and motivation of present interns, you can make better strategies to hire quality interns for the future. A promising startup is one that evolves with zeal to get better in all dimensions of running a business.

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3. Maintain a Pipeline

You should always have a pipeline of potential candidates to take up internship job roles. If you are keen to hire interns with massive potentials, you need to invite applications in bulk. You need to maintain a large pool of talents that you have with you even before you open applications for your next internship program. To do so, you have to make your startup visible on all hiring and internship portals over the internet. Further, you can also reach out to colleges and universities and collaborate with them to offer internships to their students. Next, to maintain quality even in a larger pool, you can include specific skill-based tests in the online application process. For instance, if you are hiring a candidate for public relations, you can consider an assessment related to it in the application process. You can also give them a hypothetical scenario and ask them to write their take on it. This way, you can shortlist candidates that have holistic knowledge about public relations. Further, you can select the right intern based on personal interviews.


4. Describe Job Roles Comprehensively

When an intern goes through your internship offer, he should be able to understand what you require of him. Also, he needs to know what is on offer for him as an intern working for your business venture. For any hiring process, there must be a clear definition of job roles, duties, and responsibilities a worker needs to deliver on. The internship offers should also exhibit how they can add value to an intern’s professional life and success. You can explain this by mentioning the various verticals available for learning. Remember, interns are looking for exposure through internships, and your startup has to be appealing to them on that front. You need to attract quality interns by promoting the unmatched exposure that your program offers. For instance, if you are hiring an intern for your law firm, you need to mention what learning prospects are on offer. So,  you can include in the description of the program how it can add to their knowledge on corporates, legal frameworks, and all the challenges that await them. Young and aspiring interns like challenges and learning from them. Hence, your internship offer has to be attractive enough and should seem cool enough to the potential candidates. 

5. Incorporate a Personal Touch 

Give your hiring of interns a personal touch from your end. When a candidate is selected for an internship position, call him than just writing an email. With this personal touch, you can make an intern feel valued and motivated even before he walks in for his first day at work. In this way, you can inspire the best qualities within an intern. Also, you can host a small orientation program and welcome lunch on the first working day of an intern. This personal involvement of yours can have a significant impact on the engagement of the intern. The quality of a worker and his engagement go hand in hand and depend on each other mutually. With a subtle personal touch, you can build a strong employee engagement from the word go. 

To conclude, these are some simple yet successful ways to hire quality interns for your startup. Let your interns align their efforts for growth with the expansion strategy of your startup. When you look to employ efficient interns, offer at least some basic stipend along with the opportunity. You should know how to create a great recruitment experience for all those who apply for opportunities with your startup. Also, you ought to add a personal touch to the entire process of hiring interns. Your internship programs need to be inclusive and well defined as part of a clear plan. Remember, only quality internship programs can win highly qualified interns. So, make sure your internship programs are not designed in haste and only for the sake of it. Your internship programs should reflect the vision of the organisation and how you offer a conducive learning environment. Interns are as vital as your full-time employees and at times can even prove to be better than full-time workers. You should not ever underestimate the prowess of interns as they can add so much to the fortunes of your startup.

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