Guest Blog By: Helen Wallis
Work placements and internships are an invaluable part of a CV. Finding a decent position could not only provide you with new skills, but could set you apart from the competition and tilt the scales in your favour when you start seeking employment. But finding a decent work placement or internship can be tricky. These 10 signs will help you determine whether or not your program is worth your time.
A good internship or work placement should complement your CV and portfolio. Therefore, you should be contributing to projects and learning new things all the time. If you’re position is reserved for tea and coffee runs, consider looking for somewhere else.
Having a mentor will significantly speed up the learning process. Essentially, it’s like taking private tuition and will help you learn the ropes a lot faster than you would otherwise. If you are given a mentor, your work placement is definitely worth hanging on to, even if it’s just for a short period.
If you’re given work straight away, it could mean that your boss is trying to make you feel like part of the team. In addition a friendly “hello” or morning greeting will go a long way and show that your employers are trying to help you feel comfortable in your new surroundings.
At the very least, positive responses from your boss ensures that you’ll get a decent reference at the end of your placement. If you’re lucky, a job could even be waiting for you when you finish.
Professional working environment
A professional working office is a must. Bear in mind that most businesses – especially in London – use serviced offices and don’t sign long-term lease agreements; therefore, if they relocate during your work placement, it’s not a negative sign. To understand how businesses use serviced offices visit Skyline Offices.
A sure-fire sign of a decent internship is if you have a clear advancement plan from the very start. This will give you something to strive for, which will not only reflect in your work ethic, but could lead to a paid position in the future.
Work placements and internships aren't just about learning a trade; they can also provide the perfect opportunity to network with other business people. If the company you are temporarily working for has decent contacts with respectable industry leaders, stick with them.
Top website rankings
Always check the website rankings of the business, especially if they are in an online field such as search engine optimization. For example, if you type “SEO in St. Albans/Rickmansworth” into Google, Distinctly Digital has top rankings, which shows that they’re a good company to approach if you’re based in that area.
Nobody likes an interview; however, they are often a necessity. Even if your work placement isn't paid, you are representing the company; therefore, a serious business will interview. You should always view this as a positive.
If you don’t have any direct contact with managers or don’t know who to report to, your internship or work placement may not be worth your time. Lack of communication with superiors can lead to a frustrating and confusing experience. Remember that when you’re an intern or on work experience, you’re not an employee in full capacity and won’t have the same benefits. You’re doing them a favour as much as they are for you, so don’t be afraid to be a little bit picky when looking for a suitable position.
Image Credit: Forbes
About the Author: Helen, is a new mum and part time blogger. I write about topics I find interesting and I’m passionate about. I enjoy fantastic relationships with the select few websites I work with, none more so the iHub.