One of the most frequent questions students ask after they've submitted their application is:
What happens now?
The truth is that only 5% of the employers reply to each and every application they receive and, as much as you can blame the HR team, it is up to you to make the difference and stand out.
How? Read on to find out the best ways to find an internship online...
1 Understand what you want to do
Question number 1: What do you want to do?
I know it's hard, but make sure to ask yourself this question before doing anything else. It is crucial to do an internship in the career field you are thinking of pursuing after university.
Are you into teaching or are you considering banking? Is travel your obsession or perhaps biology is what makes your heart beat faster? Ask yourself these and similar questions to make sure you don't waste time in an internship that doesn't fit your future ambitions.
2 Start looking very early
Most companies start looking for interns a few months before the start of the internship and some start the recruiting and hiring process as early as November.
So get ready and start looking as early as possible.
3 Look in the right places
There is a universe of websites offering jobs and internship. Always remember the rule of thumb: if it seems to be too good to be true, it probably is.
Then, if you are moving to Paris, you might want to look into relevant, local websites like L'etudiant which focuses on placing students in jobs and work experiences in France. If London is your final destination, then you could use the fantastic government Find an Internship tool. If Florence is where your heart is, then La Repubblica degli Stagisti, an online magazine established in 2009 is where you will find all the best internship opportunities in Italy.
4 Typos-free resume
One is enough. Yup, only one typo can be a good reason to toss your resume away. In fact, when I was working in HR - a lifetime ago- I did that very frequently and very rapidly. Why? Because it shows a lack of professionalism, attention to detail as well as rush in sending a less-than-perfect document. So don't double check your resume, triple check, use online grammar software or get someone to proofread it for you.
5 Be more than special, be outstanding
As a former HR manager who has hired hundreds of people, I can say that my job was easier and faster (and better) when I picked a CV which stood out from the rest. I used to reject all the people who sent standard cover letters or CVs which were not tailored at all to the job I was recruiting for.
Want to go the extra mile? Do something exceptional. Be outstanding. Once I got a candidate who sent me an "About me" book instead of a CV. It was an actual, printed, hard-cover book of about 100 pages. He was a fashion designer so there were loads of his designs, dresses and collections. Guess what? He got hired!
6 Follow up
Of course, your resume might have been rejected or maybe it just got lost in the recruiting black hole. A good way to find out is to follow up with the employer and check on the status of the recruiting process. You might get ignored at first, but if you do it a second or third time (avoid becoming a stalker!) you will most likely get a reply.
Final pro tip:
Think outside the box. Those 10 seconds might change your life forever.
Are you looking for an internship online? Read more about working abroad in these articles: