Are business internships still a thing?
Internships are a dependable source to gain head-start into a full-time role. According to Forage, 70% of employees from companies like IBM, Google, etc., had completed at least one internship.
Over the last few decades, business as an industry has taken big leaps forward, thanks to the rise of startup culture and e-commerce.
Business interns actively engage in assistance across various business operations. They are at the forefront of critical decisions within the company and often witness how things unfold.
Business internships are an open door to anyone regardless of any fancy MBAs or other accolades. If you dare to present a strong commitment and willingness to learn, you have a plethora of job opportunities lined up.
What is a business intern?
A business intern is an individual who engages in practical professional experience in the field of business. They are generally students or recent graduates looking to gain work experience and extensive knowledge about the industry.
This role grants great exposure across different departments like finance, marketing or human resources. You play a much bigger role in the budget management of the company than other departments. There will be a dedicated supervisor to closely monitor your work.
You’ll find readily available business internships because business operations extend to every organisation to thrive. Hence, you’ll find all types of opportunities, from paid and unpaid, to internships spanning across countries and remote.
How to find business internships near you?
The greatest plus with modern-day work is that you can bring good opportunities closer to you. If you fail to find good opportunities near your vicinity, you can always switch remote to find more suitable ones.
You can find many paid remote positions for business internships across global companies. Remote business internships bring a perfect balance to gaining industry knowledge with locational advantage. And yes, you can still network and achieve great productivity by choosing to go remote.
Consider interning abroad if you want to delve deep into global work exposure with your international business internship. You can dodge the most common internship challenges by choosing a service that leads you to a business internship through constant support and assistance. This can earn you the edge to always be a step ahead of the rest of the competition, despite the high hurdles.
Rather than going in with a clear-cut checklist, there are certain starting points to succeed with an internship search. Apart from the general tips for a successful internship search, you can also consider optimising your LinkedIn profile.
What are the job functions of a business intern?
There is no better place to sharpen your business professional skills than Business internships. There are ample opportunities to acquire and learn new skills, along with improving other qualities like networking. Furthermore, you can curate your portfolio with much more employable qualities.
Business internships primarily involve active assistance across various business operations like budgeting, sales strategies, market research and analysis, and financial accounting, among others. Their work is highly flexible as it involves work across multiple departments. Most operations revolve around client relationships and internal business operations, such as setting up client presentations and PR collaboration.
Let’s look at the responsibilities of a business intern in further detail.
Fostering customer relationships
Keeping customers at the pedestal is what drives success for most organisations, especially to ensure continued partnership and alliance.
Customer relationships start from the first purchase of a product or service. Business interns can step in to make this experience hassle-free for them. Keeping a record of customer interactions, and personal and contact details goes a long way.
Beyond that, your bottom line has to be adding value to their investment of time, money and energy. You have to genuinely choose to take their problems away.
You don’t have to master the art of maintaining relationships from Day 1 as an intern. But shadowing sales representatives and customer service executives can be a great start for this.
Data collection and analysis
Business professionals work at the forefront of organisational expense and its subsequent performance. Hence, they can assist with company expenses, and involve in data bookkeeping. They can form conclusions based on the investment, like the cost per lead or cost per application, performance ratio and more. These operations can give you a detailed understanding of various business subjects that can extend to multiple business roles.
Like any trade, there are many ways in which you can collect data within business operations:
The basic purpose of surveys is to collect specific information from a target demographic group. It is a highly efficient way to get authentic customer data since they fill it on their own. There are many tools to help you with curating surveys, like Google Forms and Jotform.
A focus group involves individuals who share similar traits in some aspect that correlates to your business. For example, if you run a sports equipment company, your focus group would be athletes or active exercise enthusiasts. You can ask about their preferences when it comes to sports equipment i.e., comfort, durability, appearance, etc.
You can learn a lot about customer behaviour and preferences by simply observing their customer journey.
In essence, observe what looped them into your product/service, what value they are looking for, and what additional value they need.
Gather business experience
Your business degrees can only do so much when it comes to the actual arena. Your primary internship goal should always be gaining practical experience, and leading operations with efficiency.
Within up-skilling, you can develop under two categories:
Hard skills are the technical skills you need to carry out your internship responsibilities, and eventually job duties, successfully. Under the business context, hard skills can be spreadsheet proficiency, data analysis, market research and more.
Soft skills relate to people and help build mutually-beneficial relationships. They are basically an accessory to your hard skills. They are mostly universal across different industries, like having emotional intelligence, good communication, people skills, organisation, and active listening.
Soft skills are essential to merge well with the internal company and place you in a better position with the customers.
Improve written and verbal communication
Business is the thread that connects all departments to achieve common goals.
For that same reason, it is essential to develop your communication skills to exemplify accuracy and professionalism. You can seek to improve both internal and external, where everything from goals and objectives would be different.
With internal communication, what matters most is accuracy. The right message can save individuals’ time and effort when conveying information. It also enables you to put yourself in a better rapport with your colleagues.
When it comes to external communication, you have many things to consider. Great communication paves the way to not just a good impression, but also a better vantage point for persuasion. You can pull your customers towards a favourable outcome when you have the right (verbal) tools to help you in your goal.
Sample Business Internship Job Description
- Actively assist and engage in comprehensive market research to identify industry trends, business strategies, and competitor analysis.
- Provide detailed business insights using market data with the help of presentations and business reports.
- Collaborate with teams across different departments to assist in planning, executing, and monitoring various business projects.
- Assist with customer relationship management by organising events, meetings and active engagement strategies.
- Engage in the procurement and upkeep of client databases and interaction logs.
- Identify opportunities for streamlining organisational workflow and productivity, and process efficiency improvements within the business operations.
- Collaborate with the marketing team to brainstorm and curate social media content, marketing campaigns and PR initiatives.
- Currently studying or recently graduated in a bachelor’s or master’s degree program in Business Administration. Marketing and other related fields are also acceptable.
- Wield the ability to interpret market data and trends.
- Exemplary command of written and verbal communication and social skills.
- Foundational proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite, and other tools surrounding data collection and organisation.
- Can manage multiple tasks simultaneously with accuracy and efficiency.
- Eagerness to learn and contribute in a fast-paced business environment.
- Flexibility to work collaboratively within a dynamic team.
- Basic understanding of business concepts and principles.
The role of any business is to proliferate profits, boost sustenance and ultimately provide a good customer experience. While they extend to business interns, their goals are much more compact and action-oriented. It involves themselves in these operations but in the initial level of achieving smaller objectives.
Earning more business degrees can give you somewhat of a head start but more importantly, recruiters focus on the experiences section of your resume. They evaluate your previous work experience and how your presence has created an impact on the company.
Capital Placement can help you find paid business internships, whether remote or at various business hubs of the world. Connect with us to schedule a call and explore the possibilities of enhancing your business acumen!