Get started

The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the world and it continues to send aftershocks across the country and the economy. 

Unemployment could reach the highest levels since the Great Depression and may very likely struggle to return to pre-pandemic levels until 2022.

Experts are claiming that this could be the worst hiring year for new graduates since the financial crisis of 2007 – 2008. This is demonstrated by the fact that many recruiters are cancelling their visits to campuses and some tech companies are even cancelling their internship programs for the year. 

However, this is a serious warning sign for both businesses, students and recent graduates alike. There are many harmful consequences of cancelling internships as they are a key function in preparing a skilled and adequately prepared workforce.

While some companies like 23andMe, Groupon, Siemens, StubHub, and Yelp, have already canceled their internship programs for this year, other more adaptive and responsive companies are finding ways to move them into a virtual setting. 

Why Is It So Critical To Move Internship Programs Online?

The fall campus season is moving in quickly. While it has been very challenging for businesses to predict what will happen in the next few months and there have been countless struggles to adaptation within the current context of COVID-19, the companies that have successfully transitioned to remote work are the ones that are the most capable of operating during these times.

Shut downs and changes to company initiatives have been prudent and necessary, but companies that do not implement additional strategies from a long-term perspective put themselves at risk of falling behind the competition.

This is particularly true for hiring strategies to maintain a strong talent pool within the company not just for this year, but for years to come.

Companies that have cancelled their internship programs are vulnerable to losing talent to other competitors who have found ways to keep their own programs open in a virtual setting. In a strained economy and desperate job market, labor forces will flock to where opportunity presents itself.

So you have to ask – does your company really want to let the best talent go to the competitor?

Samba TV is a strong example of a company who has built a program that recruits the best data engineering talent faster than the world’s biggest tech companies, which has provided them with a competitive advantage over larger companies with seemingly limitless resources.

Internship programs are a key step in attracting talent and provide a path for full-time hires within a company and this year, those who cannot find a way to move their internship programs online face a very significant risk against the competition.

How Do You Transition To An Online Internship Program?

Companies that have transitioned to remote work over the past few months, already know the challenges of supporting a team from a distance.

That said, many companies have reported unexpected benefits and boosts in productivity by 20 – 25% from their transition to remote work. While it still can be burdensome to make these kinds of transitions, taking an internship program online is similar to moving to remote work.

“Now that we work remotely, partner events, virtual meetings, and following up on LinkedIn conversations can truly be your best sourcing tactics,” says Talent Acquisition Expert, Fizza Faiyaz.

Virtual internships and remote hiring have their own unique set of challenges, but there are plenty of proven strategies that can facilitate successful programs for virtual recruiting and hiring graduates for virtual internships. To learn more, view our “Reshaping the Future of Campus Recruiting” webinar.

Kate Dolta, Field Marketing Manager at Codility.

Connect on LinkedIn