By Punyaslok Rath:
Sample two scenarios-
A certain Rahul is in the 3rd year of engineering of a very reputed college. It’s his summer break and he’s home. His day starts at 1 pm and night ends at some random friend’s place.
Then there’s a certain Raj who is Rahul’s classmate. He’s sweating it out at construction site of an esteemed company’s project. Unlike Rahul, he decided to utilize his summer break by doing an internship. A year down the lane, when placement season starts, who do you think is more likely to get hired?
Let’s face it. In this immensely competitive job market, you need to stand out among your peers. You could be the topper of your college, you could do many certification courses or you could just dream of being the son of Bill Gates in your next life, but nothing gives you a better edge than doing an internship! Now, finding an internship is no mean task. Let us make that easy for you by streamlining your options-
1. Internship portals: Basically, there are companies which specialize in providing
internships relevant internships. In a layman’s language, they act as third-party facilitators. They bring the companies which require interns and students who require internships to a common platform. There are many such portals out there and Internshala is among the leading ones. To make the whole process even smoother, portals like Internshala provide online trainings to make the students industry-ready. While internship portals operate pan-India, one can utilize his/her college resources to get in touch with the local industries and companies.
2. Training & Placement Cell: Lately, colleges are waking up to the fact that internships have more or less become a necessity for students. T&P cells have contacts in companies’ recruitment machinery and a recommendation from your college provides a lot of credibility to your resume. Another great advantage of going through your college T&P cell is the advice you could gather from the seniors who went through a similar route. T&P cell is an indirect method of contacting the relevant persons for an opening in their company. There’s a much more direct method- LinkedIn.
3. LinkedIn: Here’s a social network which solely focuses on how to make the right connections to learn more about jobs and internships. LinkedIn is the Facebook of professionals. The site has, of late, taken a huge leap in popularity and many HRs of reputed companies are now hiring through it. Users can connect to industry leaders and professionals of their field. One can apply in a specific industry or even to a specific company by filtering the internship opportunities on the site. For recruiters, a LinkedIn profile that contains all the educational information and career experiences acts as online resume. So if you’re a student who is still to get a hang on LinkedIn, you need to buck up and register!
4. Networking: You’re hunting for the right person on LinkedIn but your friendly neighbour, Sharma uncle, is right there, sitting on your offer letter! We understand you hate his free advice, but if he is willing to refer you to a company HR, then bearing him is totally worth it! The simple point is, most internships are secured through referrals. The more people you know in the field you are interested in, the better it is for you. It is not necessary to know Mr. Ambani if you want to intern at Reliance, but someone (anyone!) in the HR department would do. However, one needs to understand that connecting with the right people takes a lot of time and might not always bear the desired results. But there is a very high chance of you landing an internship just because someone ‘higher’ in the office referred you. So, go for it!
5. Cold calling: If you’re done trying portals, T&P cell, LinkedIn and even Sharma uncle turned his back on you, this is your last resort. You never know what could work in your favour and get you that offer letter. Making a call out of the blue might not get you a positive response but there’s no harm in calling, right? What you could do is, collect mail ID of company HRs and drop them a mail regarding your interest in interning for the company. Now you have the reason for calling the HR/company- you have to follow up.
No matter what method you deploy for landing an internship, it’s very important that you find one!
This article has been contributed by Internshala – India’s leading internship portal.