Probably the most important corporate resource over the next 20 years will be talent—and attracting the best talent for your company isn’t easy. But you can position your company to get in on the talent pool early. More and more companies are using internships to seed their talent pipeline.

College intern programs provide your company with an early opportunity to gauge the talents of a new generation of workers and, in many cases, sell your company as a quality place for students to begin their careers after they graduate. Intern programs can provide your company with:

  • a source of highly motivated talent
  • students that bring new perspectives to old problems
  • quality candidates to assist in diversity recruitment efforts
  • a flexible and cost-effective workforce for project work
  • a proven cost-effective way to recruit and evaluate potential employees

They also provide unparalleled experiential learning opportunities for students as pre-professionals seeking to boost their knowledge and competencies. In a study by Accenture Strategy (Gen Z Rising: 2017 Graduate Employment Study), nearly three-fourths of Gen Z graduates completed internship or apprenticeship programs and 83% are willing to relocate to another city or region for a job offer! This generation looks to be excited by the opportunity to find the right fit and contribute right away.

And more and more companies are tapping their global mobility teams to help with the coordination of benefits that support interns in getting up and running in their new location.

The article linked below explains how the Department of Labor has updated their process for determining whether an intern needs to be paid or whether it can be a volunteer intern. They have rejected the previous six-factor test and now have seven factors that play into the analysis.  

According to this article, "While the prior test required employers to meet all six factors, the factors outlined for consideration in the primary beneficiary test are non-exhaustive, which should allow employers a bit more breathing room in structuring unpaid internship programs, especially when students are involved."

In addition to wage and hour issues, it’s important to be alert to other requirements governing your interns like state-imposed laws that may be more stringent than these seven federal factors. 

More often, as companies extend further to find and bring in talent, they are also doing the same for the best and brightest interns. Many companies are seeking support from their global mobility programs to support and coordinate their intern mobility offerings.