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The Benefits of a Work Plan for Your Internship Program

Written by Fred Moore

As an employer you may be thinking to yourself, “What can I do to make sure my internship program runs smoothly?”  Employers all over the nation are designing their internship programs to try to achieve the maximum ROI for the organization, the intern, and all employees engaged in the program. Unique experiences, exciting work projects, access to leaders are all great aspects of a successful internship program, but if the program itself is not organized in a well-thought-out fashion, all the experiences will not make up for the lack of thoughtful planning. Think about what your intern will ACTUALLY do on a day-to day-basis. Doing market research is great and all, but what does that mean and how does it translate to an actual assignment or work project? A very effective solution to this issue is to develop an internship work plan.

The work plan is the roadmap for your intern. It will communicate their goals, objectives and how they will spend their time at your organization. While this may take some time on the front end to create, it will pay off immensely during the course of the internship. So, what does a work plan, or internship roadmap, look like? These are the key elements of an effective work plan:

  • Goals
  • Weekly activities
  • Role of the intern
  • In-house resources
  • Work assignments
  • Training (if offered)
  • Important, dates, meetings, events, etc.

All of the aforementioned items will help make your intern’s time meaningful and the operation of your internship program more successful. An effective work plan will help increase productivity while creating an overall greater experience for the intern and the people involved.

When you have established a basis of why you need an intern and how your company should prepare, the next step is to roll up your sleeves and spend some time creating your plan. A few hours outlining your intern’s program over the course of their time with you will be valuable in the long run. The work plan will not only keep the interns on track, but will keep everyone involved accountable. Interns have stated in the past that structure is key for an overall beneficial experience. Keeping your intern engaged and busy is important for the overall satisfaction of the intern and the organization.

Click on the link to view a sample work plan: Sample Internship Work Plan. For more information and tips about running a successful internship program, visit

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