Young professionals have been challenged to adapt to new ways of gaining real-world work experience due to the restrictions of COVID-19. College-aged students have consistently sought out internship positions for professional development, but the ease of finding and the extent of learning through these opportunities has been affected.
Dialing in on Zoom
Zoom has encompassed many individual’s routines for working remotely, and many companies are using this platform as a solution to continue their internship programs. Indeed offers 8 pieces of advice for success in a virtual interview setting.
- Test your technology beforehand
- Wear professional attire
- Prepare in advance
- Limit distractions
- Use professional body language
- Build rapport
- Be authentic
From the starting stages of a candidate’s first interview to the daily tasks of dedicated employees, video conferencing and online communication platforms have become a widespread solution. Learning how to maximize opportunities for success through the use of Zoom is important for growth in a constantly innovating, digitally-driven world.
Altered Internship Programs
Of the employers that have chosen to continue their internship programs, CNBC said that 75% have made at least one change to their program and, according to U.S. News & World Report, 46% are shifting their programs to the virtual format. Current students and recent graduates are questioning how this experience will be replicated remotely. Many also wonder whether the amount of learning that will take place over Zoom will be comparable to that in a face-to-face environment.
SHRM states that “experiencing the culture of an organization is the hardest thing to replicate in a remote space.” Adequately substituting for the in-person projects, networking, and socialization will be challenging for many companies. SHRM offers 5 ways that companies can run successful remote internship programs.
- Set clear expectations
- Invite frequent communication
- Encourage relationship–building
- Assign mentors
- Perfect onboarding
To best position themselves and their interns, companies need to embody a forward-thinking approach. Organizations will set themselves apart from their competitors when they provide them with the right tools and prioritize open communication.
The transition between being a college student and a full-time employee has been altered as COVID-19 has put many restrictions on typical internship programs. Companies have been challenged to find new ways to bring real-world work experience to students through remote opportunities. Due to the impact of COVID-19, virtual communications and working remotely has quickly become a standard in the development of many young professionals.