Finding Top Talent: Where to Find the Best Interns? [Employers]

There are a lot of avenues that you could travel down to find top talent in your field. Websites like and are great sites for employers to hop on and explore their options.

Human resource management


The first thing that you’ll want to do is register your company and the internship opportunity on the site itself, which is to state the obvious. A lot of these websites have sample internship descriptions that allow you to virtually copy and paste your internship description – assuming you have at least a mock-up.

Be as detailed as you can be in describing the kinds of roles that the intern will likely play, talk about the duration of the internship and your expectations, and make sure to go over the details of the tasks that the intern will most likely be carrying out.

Creative Ways for Locating Top Talent Locally

While there is a ton of talent on these online resources, sometimes finding the perfect candidate through one of these platforms simply doesn’t pan out. When that is the case, what’s next?

Take to Social Media

Social media used to be a place for goofing off and whiling away the hours by linking up with friends online. Fast forward a few years and a full 92% of companies say that they use social media for internship recruitment.

About half of Fortune 500 companies post social media links on their online career pages in hopes of landing big talent. Facebook, LinkedIn and (surprisingly) Twitter are the current hot spots through which companies gain more information about the highest potential recruits.

LinkedIn is still the undisputed king in terms of linking up interns with their potential future employers and likely internship hosts. A promising percentage of companies (73%) successfully use sites like LinkedIn to check out, correspond with and ultimately hire star interns.

Throw Down the Gauntlet Online!

Companies like MasterCard have already done this successfully – try running a challenge online and see what kind of talent is out there.

This basically works by asking future interns to submit their best solutions to a problem you pose online – e.g., What’s the best way for a company like ours to attract new customers while retaining our current marketing campaign?

If you’re looking for a marketing campaign manager the amount of attention that a given intern can dredge up online might itself put her above the rest of the field. Retweets, hashtags and conversations about your organization online are usually a very good thing!

Set Up Your Booth…On Campus

Job fairs on college campuses are a very efficient way of finding great talent that local universities have to offer. From an intern’s perspective, it’s an opportunity to assess the employers who would make the best personal fit, challenge them professionally, and offer the greatest growth potential.

From your perspective, you’re going out there and enthusiastically meeting more potential interns in-person than you otherwise could…barring the process of meeting interns online and setting up sit-down interviews.

If you go right to the source – college campuses – you can see interns in their natural habitat and find out more about their academic interests and background. You might even ask professors who the top students in, say, their engineering or design classes are.

Take Along Current and Former Interns

Whether you decide to plan and broadcast non-work-related meet-ups through social media or set up shop at a college job fair make sure that you bring along yesteryear’s interns that received full-time jobs at your organization. Doing so is an icebreaker, inspiration and on-the-spot problem solver all in one!

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Bridge is a program that focuses on connecting employers and students in Rhode Island. The goal of Bridge is to match Rhode Island employers with talented students looking to gain valuable professional experience. Applying knowledge and skills acquired in college to a professional setting is a vital component of a student’s college education. Students who gain relevant internship experience are better prepared for full-time employment after graduation. By hiring interns, employers gain qualified, career-driven young professionals as employees. Student bring with them exposure to cutting edge practices and technology, new insights and philosophies, flexibility and a thirst for knowledge. bRIdge has a particular focus on connecting students and employers from specialized fields such as Business, Science, IT, Technology, Health, Design, Engineering and Manufacturing. The bRIdge website allows employers to post paid or unpaid internships online and directly reach out to a vast and talented pool of students. College students and recent graduates can sign up and start looking for an appropriate professional learning opportunity in minutes. bRIdge is a program of the Rhode Island Student Loan Authority (RISLA) and RISLA’s College Planning Center of Rhode Island. RISLA has joined up with Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Rhode Island (AICURI), the Rhode Island Board of Governors for Higher Education (RIBGHE) and the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce to bring together academia, business and community. If you have any questions about this program or if you need any assistance, please feel free to contact us.

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