Creating a Successful Internship Program: Onboarding with Purpose and Values

Cuong Duy Nguyen

Hatched by Cuong Duy Nguyen

Aug 01, 2023

3 min read


Creating a Successful Internship Program: Onboarding with Purpose and Values


Setting up an internship program is not only beneficial for organizations but also provides valuable learning opportunities for interns. However, to ensure a successful internship experience, it is crucial to establish a well-structured onboarding process that aligns with the organization's values. In this article, we will explore the key steps involved in setting up an internship program and discuss the significance of onboarding with values in mind, especially in the context of the hybrid/remote workplace.

Step 1: Designing an Internship Plan

The first and foremost step in setting up an internship program is to design a comprehensive internship plan. On the first day of the internship, it is essential to have the intern and the supervisor sign and date the internship plan. This agreement should outline the goals, objectives, and expectations of the internship. By clearly defining the internship's purpose and aligning it with organizational objectives, both parties can work towards a shared vision.

Step 2: Onboarding with Organizational Values in Mind

A successful internship program goes beyond providing practical experience; it also offers a glimpse into the organization's culture and values. By onboarding interns with organizational values in mind, companies can foster a sense of belonging and purpose. This can be achieved by incorporating the following strategies:

  • 1. Introduce the company's mission and values: During the onboarding process, take the time to explain the mission and core values of the organization. Help interns understand how these values drive decision-making and shape the company's culture. This will create a sense of purpose and enable interns to align their work with the organization's values.
  • 2. Provide mentorship and guidance: Assigning a mentor to each intern can greatly enhance their onboarding experience. Mentors can not only help interns navigate the company's procedures but also serve as role models who exemplify the organization's values. This personalized guidance allows interns to understand how their work contributes to the broader objectives of the organization.
  • 3. Encourage open communication and feedback: Establishing a culture of open communication and feedback is crucial for onboarding interns successfully. Encourage interns to ask questions, share their ideas, and provide feedback on their experiences. This promotes a collaborative environment and helps interns feel valued and supported.

Step 3: Onboarding in the Hybrid/Remote Workplace

With the rise of remote work and hybrid work models, onboarding interns in such environments requires additional considerations. Here are some tips for effective onboarding in a hybrid/remote workplace:

  • 1. Leverage technology for virtual onboarding: Utilize video conferencing tools, online collaboration platforms, and project management software to facilitate virtual onboarding. Conduct virtual orientation sessions, introduce interns to team members through video conferences, and provide them with the necessary resources and tools to work remotely.
  • 2. Establish clear communication channels: In a hybrid/remote workplace, clear and consistent communication is vital. Set up regular check-ins with interns to address any concerns, provide guidance, and track their progress. Encourage the use of communication tools such as instant messaging and video calls to foster real-time collaboration and maintain a sense of connection.
  • 3. Foster a remote-friendly culture: Emphasize the importance of work-life balance and flexibility in the internship program. Encourage interns to establish routines and boundaries to maintain productivity and well-being while working remotely. Provide resources and tips for effective remote work, such as time management techniques and strategies for maintaining work-life balance.


Setting up an internship program requires careful planning and execution. By designing a comprehensive internship plan, onboarding with organizational values in mind, and adapting to the hybrid/remote workplace, organizations can create a meaningful and impactful internship experience. Remember to provide clear guidance, encourage open communication, and foster a supportive environment for interns to thrive. With these actionable steps, your internship program can contribute to the growth of both the organization and the interns.

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