The Rocky Transition from Intern to Full-Time Hire

To compete in the “New Economy,” companies are seeking employees with an aptitude for technology and innovation. Many, believing that the Millennial generation has these core competencies, have beefed up their college intern programs as a way to fill the talent pipeline. Such programs are successful in developing and motivating Millennials. The problem, however, is in the transition to full-time hire. Specifically, the experience new graduates receive as interns contrasts sharply with what they experience as full-time employees. For example:
  • Interns are urged to meet new people and explore the company, while full-time hires are discouraged from actively networking
  • Interns receive messages such as “our doors are always open,” while full-time hires hear “know your place”
  • Interns enjoy explicit career-pathing guidance, while full-time hires receive little or no career development
  • Interns work for managers invested in their experience, while full-time hires report to whomever has headcount, regardless of that manager’s “people skills”
Companies that do not invest in a seamless transition from intern to full-time hire will experience high attrition, damage their reputation as a desirable place to work, and lose competitive advantage. What does the transition from intern to full-time hire in your organization look like?

For additional insight and strategies on this topic, feel free to download my white paper, “The Rocky Transition from Intern to Full-Time Hire.”

Amy Hirsh Robinson, Principal, Interchange Group
Workforce Strategies for the New Economy