Finding an accounting internship to work at for a few months or longer in your college years is a great way to position yourself for professional success after your graduate. However, the last thing you want is to spin your wheels working in a position that does not benefit you or your upcoming career in some way. By focusing decide which opportunities you want to take advantage of and which ones are not worth your attention on these points during the interview process, you can more easily your time.
Resource: Top 10 Online Accounting Degree Programs
A Great Work Environment
You can learn a lot about the work environment of a company by exploring its website, but the best idea is to pay attention to the environment during the interview process. Focus on the energy and ambiance of the environment. Consider if employees seem happy or stressed and anxious. Pay attention to how management interacts with employees and if employees are supportive of each other. You will be spending several months or more in the environment, so you need to ensure that it is enjoyable and productive for you.
The Ability to Develop Real-Life Work Skills
As an intern, you can expect to do a great deal of grunt work in most offices. However, the accounting internship should also give you the ability to develop skills through hands-on experiences. For example, by reviewing financial records for errors, you can gain auditing experience. If you are simply assigned to filing and typing all day, you will enjoy very little skill-building opportunities from the positon.
Amazing Industry Connections or Networking Opportunities
You also should have the opportunity to meet various players inside the company and even in different companies. Your position as an intern may allow you to network and make connections that make it easier for you to locate a job after you graduate or to pursue other goals that you may have. Ensure that the position gives you these opportunities, and use them as strategically as possible when they are presented to you.
Relevance to Your Field of Study
Not all financial intern positions are relevant to your specific field of study. For example, some positions may be focused on operating statements and taxes, but others may be focused on financing or lending. The ideal position is one that will give you precise experience in your field rather than in a random financial industry position.
A Post-Graduate Work Opportunity
It can be difficult to secure a post-graduate work opportunity while interning, but some interns do manage to succeed in this area. If you are fortunate enough to interview for several different positions at a wide range of companies, inquire during the interview process about the number of interns they hire after graduating and about available positions that may be suitable for you to apply for. Some companies are clear that they use this time to screen and train candidates with the hopes of hiring them for a full-time position. Others have a revolving door with new interns every semester without offering them a full-time position.
As you can see, the right accounting intern program at a top-notch company can position you for great success in your field immediately after college. In fact, it can launch your career in a way. However, other positions may do little to nothing for your career, and they may largely be used only to meet a graduation requirement. The former option is preferred by most students. Therefore, as you search for the right internship position to apply for and to accept, pay attention to these points.