webmasterMay 30, 2017May 30, 2017If your organization has summer interns arriving in a few weeks, now is the time to plan for their successful integration into your company. If you have never hired interns before or the company landscape has changed since last year, this checklist is for you. Remember, above all, interns are generally 21 to 23 years of age and want to do well at this position. They are hoping either to be hired by your organization when they graduate or for a stellar recommendation at the end of the summer. Intern Integration Checklist for Success Two Weeks Before They Arrive Make sure you and your backup have completed the training on supervising interns. Yes, you will need a backup for those days you are traveling, in meetings or on vacation. That backup person will have the same authority as you to make management decisions. Determine what their responsibilities will be and how much direction you are giving them. I have talked with companies that give their interns free reign to accomplish a job (i.e. develop a new iOS app) and ones that are very structured about the way a task will be completed. Identify the top three things you want them to accomplish and figure out ahead of time how involved you want to be. Set up their workspace. Determine what equipment they will need to perform their job and where they will work. It is best if they have their own space that they can come to every day. Because you will only have them for a few weeks, a corporate rental arrangement may suit your needs. Here are the questions to answer: Will they need a desktop, laptop or tablet? A lot of this will be determined by what they will be doing (developing a gaming app requires a high-powered desktop, for example) and whether they need to tote their computing power to meetings or client calls (a tablet might work well here). Do they need an individual printer rental or will they tie into the larger printer? What office supplies do they need? Does the office have a desk, chair and adequate lighting? If not, look into a local furniture rental company for whatever you need including floor lamps. Does the office have a phone in it or are you expecting the intern to use their cell phone? If it is the later, determine how much time you expect them to be on the phone and be sure to set up a reimbursement plan for them. If you have an internal phone system, set up their extension. Add their email address to the system. The Day They Arrive Be sure you and your team are 30 minutes early and greet them at the door. Interns are anxious to start their new position and will arrive 10-20 minutes early. Be there when they get in and make them feel welcome. Show them their new workspace, give them the necessary paperwork to fill out and offer them a cup of coffee, juice or water. Once the paperwork is in place, move to orientation. Take them on a tour of your office building and show them where everything is located. Then, convene in the board room and start your onboarding process. In this session, be sure to review the job description (especially if it has changed), expectations for success, dress code and work hours. Most likely, they are very familiar with technology, so training on the departmental computer applications may go quickly. Be sure to cover the amount of personal texting and social media interaction that is acceptable to you. Schedule weekly check-in points. You are busy and hopefully, they will be too. It is important to set a time/date that you can check-in with each other, even if it is only for 10 minutes. I suggest this be first thing in the morning on the same day of the week, perhaps on Fridays at 8 am when things are slower. At the Weekly Check-In Points Nip things in the bud. If you can see the intern is arriving late, leaving work early, always tired or not following dress code, remind them of the company’s policy. Give them an oral warning, then a written one if they are still not following your rules and then, if needed, terminate them. It is better to go without an intern then to have one that cannot follow your rules. Ask for feedback. Find out how they like the job, what they need to do it better and if they have any concerns. Listen and write down all that requires following-up. Let them know you will get back to them by next week’s check-in point, if not before then. Review their progress. If they are designing a new app for your company, determine each week how they are coming along. If they are rebranding and designing new marketing collateral for your organization, every week see what they have come up. Give them accolades. When interns are doing something right, be sure to give them praise. This will just fuel them to continue to do things better and better. Set up a monthly lunch with other managers. If you work for a large organization, it is important that they touch base with other managers to determine if they are culturally a fit in the organization. Have others take them to lunch and give you some feedback. We Can Help Outfit Your Interns’ Office Need equipment for your interns? Call us at 888-520-5667 or request a quote online. Our technical staff will help you select the right technology rental equipment to fulfill your needs.