INFOGRAPHIC: The changing world of internships

As you prepare to welcome your summer interns with open arms, take a step back and think about just how much internships have changed over the last half-century — and a look at where they’re going next.   
In the 1980s, only 3% of companies hired interns. Today, that number comes in at 47%, or nearly half of all employers.
That’s according to new research from InternMatch.
Perhaps more valuable to companies is the changing face of interns. In 2013, 33% of companies are hiring virtual interns — a 20% increase from 2011 to 2012.
Other notable statistics:

  • 37% of students say internships are a good job-search resource
  • 81% of employers find they have better experiences with new hires that have intern experience
  • 92% of recruiters use or plan to use social media for recruiting interns
  • 63% of all internships are paid, though 72% of interns think pay is the least important factor of an internship, and
  • Interns are 70% more likely to be hired as full-time employees with a company.

Internship rules

One note: Hiring interns isn’t always the easiest legal landscape to navigate, especially when it comes to hiring unpaid ones.
If you want to hire and employ unpaid interns, there’s a particularly high threshold they have to pass, according to a fact sheet released by the Department of Labor in April 2010.
The following six criteria must be applied when determining if an internship can be unpaid:

  1. The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment;
  2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
  3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
  4. The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern, and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
  5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
  6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.

Check out the full infographic on the history of internships below.