Aug 24th 2021

How to land an internship: 4 deciding factors on who gets hired

Finding an internship that aligns with your career goals is half the battle; getting chosen is the next big hurdle. Whilst taking this next step is exciting, it can also be overwhelming, especially if you are fresh out of university. You will be coming against hundreds of other candidates, all with their eyes set on that perfect internship with the aim of landing a job at the end of it. In fact, around 70% of employers offer their interns full-time jobs. 

So what can you do to give yourself the best shot at the role? How do you show companies that you are the cream of the crop? Well, we have pulled together the below factors that could make or break for whether you land an internship.

How to get picked for an internship 

Show passion for the role

You will be surprised how far enthusiasm and excitement for a role or the company can go. Employers want to hire someone that is passionate about both the company and the internship at hand. It shows them that you will throw yourself in head first so that you hit the ground running. 

There are a few ways you can demonstrate this: 

  • Show the hiring manager that you have clearly researched the company and demonstrate how you align with their mission and values. 
  • After your interview, make sure to drop them a thank you email, emphasising how excited you are about the role. This adds a personal touch and makes yourself memorable. 
  • Your cover letter is the perfect opportunity to let your personality shine through. Here you can express why you are excited about their company but also what you can bring to the table. 

Be flexible 

You may be set on exactly the role you want to go for. But, whilst it’s great that you know exactly what you are after, this doesn’t leave you much room to explore slightly different options. You should express flexibility in where you would be placed and a willingness to try different challenges and tasks to what you had in mind. An internship is all about learning and experiencing new things. You will be expected to take on tasks that no one else in the office wants and so you cannot always be exactly sure what your role will entail. So be sure to demonstrate you are willing to do grunt work and can be flexible depending on the business’ needs. 

Demonstrate relevant skills 

It is widely accepted that internships are structured for people early in their careers, but the best candidates demonstrate relevant skills and experience. This doesn’t mean you need to have many years under your belt, but a range of accomplishments that mean you can bring something to the role and company. 

Chris Davies, Founder of the online graduate career guidance platform, Graduate Coach, says, “It is only by developing these skills – ones that are right for the job you want and the environment that you work in – that you will be hired.”

Here are some examples: 

  • Been part of a relevant club at university where you gained relevant experience
  • Taken an online course that helped upskill you for the role 
  • Completed work experience in a related field 
  • Signed up for volunteer work that has developed your skills relevant to the role

Be on top of things 

It’s making sure you keep on top of the little things that could make or break between you and someone else in getting hired.

  • Apply early: It should go without saying, but you should know the deadline for submitting an application. But more than that, don’t work to get it just in time. A lot of internships will operate on a first come first serve basis. So don’t miss out on an opportunity because you didn’t put in enough effort or organisation to get it in early and ahead of everyone else. 
  • Attention to detail: What’s more, pay attention to the details and instructions of the application at hand. Send it in exactly how they want it and make sure it is submitted to your best standards. A first impression is more important than you think. So don’t be sloppy and stay on top of things. 

The bottom line is that landing an internship doesn’t need to be an overly stressful experience. With everything in life, you get what you put in. An internship is within reach of your grasp, you just need to apply the above tips and show the employer why they should hire you. With the right attitude, it won’t take long before you are snapped up. 

If you are worried that you don’t have enough experience, then check out our blog on how to get a job with no experience

How Tempo Interns work

Tempo Interns have three intakes a year – July, November, and March, and all internships are four months long within four different areas to choose from: Sales, Customer Support, Marketing, or Operations. All internships are paid and they allow you to gain some valuable experience at some of the UK’s most exciting startups, as well as putting these 6 reasons into practice! To best keep an eye out for opportunities, hit the button below.