HR Glossary  >   Internship


Full-time job applications frequently require industry experience. Employers frequently favour applicants who have prior experience working in positions that are comparable to the one they are providing.

An internship is a brief period of work experience provided by companies to students, recent graduates, and even professionals. It can be characterised as a starting point in a specific industry. It gives them hands-on experience in their chosen industry and helps them grasp how it works.

If you're new to the business or are still in school, an internship can help you improve professionally and assess whether the career path you're pursuing is a good fit for you. There is research for India that says about the internship preferences among Indian students.

In this post, we explain internships, discuss their purpose, list some of their benefits, and answer frequently asked questions about internships.

What is an internship - Meaning and definition

The internship meaning is that it is an entry-level position that often leads to a career in a specific sector or field. Companies may hire recent graduates or final-year students for a specific time. An organisation may or may not pay a stipend or salary for this opportunity, as the primary purpose is for interns to gain valuable experience.

Students often apply for internships throughout their undergraduate or graduate studies, and they may work in the position for one or more months, either part-time or full-time. They may work as an intern for a semester or quarter, and their classes may or may not resume during this time.

An internship can provide you with important professional experience while also fulfilling college requirements. Some internships also allow students to earn credit for their courses upon completion. Internships can introduce you to the numerous aspects of full-time employment, allow you to explore your specific interests, and help you set career goals. It may even provide you with relevant experiences that you can include in your results.

What is the meaning of interns?

An intern is a developing professional who works for a company for a limited period to get entry-level experience and knowledge in a certain career field. Interns are typically college students, however, other people can also be interns, particularly if they are changing careers or pursuing higher education degrees. As an intern, you understand the day-to-day operations of a firm, department, or position to gain insight into a potential career path with less commitment.

Interns might earn college credit or be paid for their labour. Internships are a great way to obtain real-world experience outside of the classroom and build your career. They may explore their hobbies to help lead them in personal and professional goals, as well as learn about the job description in the chosen field to determine if it is a good fit.

What is the concept of internships?

An internship is a time of employment that allows people, usually students or graduates, to obtain new skills and experience in a field that they desire to pursue. They are ideal for learning new abilities and can last from a few weeks to many months or even a year.

Internship descriptions differ, with some requiring you to assist current employees and others asking you to manage tasks or projects. Interns are being given increasing responsibilities, and the majority of internships now require a bachelor's degree. This differentiates them from work experience positions.

What is the objective of an internship at a company?

A corporation or firm may decide to develop and operate an internship programme to assist in identifying prospective employees or expanding their talent management process. Other reasons a corporation might use an internship programme are:

  • Increasing brand exposure in local universities and communities.
  • Interns frequently do fewer assignments, which helps full-time staff improve their productivity and time management.
  • Lowering labour expenses because internships occasionally provide college credit rather than cash.
  • Interns can contribute opinions outside of a company's culture, which broadens its perspective and inventiveness.
  • Maintaining involvement in the community and assisting students to begin their professional pathways

What is the benefit of an internship for a professional?

Here are a few reasons why an individual may choose to apply for an internship.

  • Gain experience: Job postings frequently say that employers prefer people with education and work experience. If you're new to the workforce or in school, you should look for an internship to get the necessary experience for most entry-level positions.
  • Identify professional goals: An internship can provide you with real-world experience in a work role by introducing you to a career path, its responsibilities, and daily operations. If you enjoy your internship, it could mean that your career is on the right track.
  • Strengthen your resume: Internships can provide you with work experience before you enter the workforce. They may also aid you in building extra talents to include on your CV, highlighting your value as a candidate.
  • Earn college credits: Some internships may grant you college credit for your time as an intern. An internship that provides the opportunity to earn college credits is useful for all students. This is because they can get work experience and credits.

How does a company benefit when it hires interns?

Employers might gain from recruiting interns or implementing a larger internship programme. Here are five great perks of interning:

A bigger workforce

Interns provide significant support and assistance to current employees, even if the responsibilities assigned to all interns are limited. Other coworkers can explore innovative or advanced ideas by taking on jobs as interns. As an intern, you can expect to be assigned duties that will help you learn a new skill or more about the industry, as well as collaborate with other employees on specific projects, research, or campaigns. Most internships include supervision to provide comments on your work.

Gain new perspectives

Internships are an excellent method to incorporate new ideas and perspectives into your firm. They usually have new industry expertise and, when combined with a can-do mentality, can be a source of creative ideas and inventive solutions. So, after you've got them on board, don't forget to encourage them to express their thoughts. Let them know that their input is valued.

Tutoring Opportunities

Internship programmes allow existing employees to assist future leaders in their fields, which can develop a healthy work culture and boost corporate morale. Helping to teach and develop new employees can encourage them, revitalise their enthusiasm or work ethic, and promote effective team leadership.

Improve your employees' leadership capabilities

Interns should always be connected with mentors or supervisors to ensure that they are learning new skills and doing their duties effectively. This is an excellent opportunity for some of your full-time employees to demonstrate and enhance their leadership abilities. This will also help you determine who has management potential if you are considering promoting someone.

A new outlook

Interns provide a fresh perspective on a company's daily operations and processes, as well as opportunities to express thoughts on strategy, objectives, policies, and other topics. As an intern, you can participate in brainstorming sessions and meetings and provide feedback and suggestions to corporate or internship leaders.

You can use your education and skills to assist organisations in implementing the most recent ideas and approaches in your chosen job field. With the increasing visibility and use of social media, interns can use their digital abilities to generate innovative chances and ideas for social media marketing or engagement.

Positive advertising

Communities and industries frequently commend those who offer internships to the next generation of businesspeople. Companies that offer internships can build or strengthen relationships with universities and colleges, enhancing their presence on campus and capacity to recruit more students. Internships can also encourage community involvement and presence by teaching future employees and making a difference.

Train future full-time employees

An internship could be an excellent opportunity for you to train someone, familiarise them with your company, and assess their abilities before hiring them full-time. Consider the internship a trial period in which you and the intern can determine whether your organisation is a good fit for them. Another advantage of making interns full-time employees is that they are familiar with their teammates. They are familiar with the work atmosphere, so there will be no period of adjustment.

A worker candidate pool

Internships allow companies to select and develop future talent while also increasing staff retention rates, as many interns receive job offers after their internship. As a previous intern, you will transition into your new role quicker than an external hire. Employers can organise a variety of social activities and training sessions to learn more about each intern and whether they would be a good permanent addition to the company.

What are the different types of internships?

Internships differ according to the programme, company, location, and level of schooling. Below are some internship examples:

Summer internship

During a semester internship, you often work part-time while taking classes for pay or school credit.


An externship is typically a brief internship that lasts only a few weeks, additionally referred to as job shadowing.

Cooperative learning

Co-op programmes differ from internships in that they require more time. Most co-ops run a year or longer, with students attending a combination of classes and labour. For example, a college may provide a five-year degree programme, with one year dedicated to co-op work to obtain experience.

One-year internship

In certain one-year internships, you spend the first half unpaid to allow a company to assess your potential. If you're successful, you'll normally get paid in the second half of the year.

College internships

College internships are temporary work within a university or campus that are typically offered to scientific, health, technology, or research students seeking higher education degrees.

Virtual internships

These are remote and can be done from home or at school. They provide flexibility and the ability to work for firms or organisations located further away.

Service learning

These internships typically have a combination of study, interning, and performing community service.

Why starting an internship programme is the smart choice for your organisation

There are numerous advantages to implementing an internship programme inside an organisation. This includes:

  • Improving your employees' leadership skills and developing the next generation of managers and leaders.
  • Interns' excitement can help your business run smoothly and increase production.
  • The inclusion of varied and youthful voices can help your company evolve and provide new ideas on how to improve its procedures.
  • Internships can assist you grow your employee prospect pool. It is a terrific opportunity to find top talent, make connections, and ultimately recruit the appropriate people.
  • It could be the answer to your hiring demands in a competitive labour market.


Businesses prefer hard workers. They require someone who can follow instructions and keep the company running smoothly and efficiently. Interns can do this and are a low-cost choice with high energy, a desire to learn, and a diverse skill set.

Assigning interns lower-level duties or incorporating them into ongoing projects might free up your more experienced colleagues to focus on essential company activities. As a result, your employees will be less stretched and have more time to produce higher-quality work.

An internship programme could be the answer to increasing your company's production. Interns are motivated by the chance of full-time employment to maintain high work standards, and they appreciate that every day is an opportunity to learn something new that will advance their careers or improve their performance as employees.


What is the difference between an internship and full-time employment?

Internships are typically short-term and designed to provide new employees with hands-on work experience. On the other hand, full-time jobs provide long-term employment chances for people. Internships are primarily intended to provide the intern with a learning experience that will allow them to better grasp the industry.

Can I do an internship if I am not a student?

If you are not a student, you may be able to apply for and accept internship positions, depending on the requirements of the programme. Internships are popular among adults because they can help those who have career experience in different fields. Before applying, make sure to review the qualifying conditions for a given programme.

How much time does it take to finish an internship?

There is no defined duration for an internship that businesses or institutions will deem credible. Internships can run anything from six weeks to one year. Internships frequently match with school timetables, so the majority of internships last between eight and twelve weeks throughout the summer.

Why do businesses hire interns?

Interns are hired by businesses of all sizes and industries to provide valuable support to both the company and its current employees. Internships allow firms to invest in their future development while also discovering new talent and potential leaders. Interns can take on lower-level chores, giving up time for colleagues to tackle additional work, but more internships now have obligations beyond administrative duties.

Are internships beneficial?

Internships, when done correctly, are worthwhile. They're a terrific way to network inside an industry. You may also discover that the career or industry is not what you imagined, but you will leave with a greater understanding of what you want to accomplish next. The experience on your CV will also be useful.

How to get an internship?

When finding an internship, you can connect with Career Services, as they keep a database of previous internship sites for other students and can provide you with further suggestions if you schedule an appointment for individualised assistance. You can also talk to your academic advisor about ideas. You can also use the internet and other websites to get an internship.

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