Many firms welcome interns to the work place, but in a blog posting on Larry Mogelonsky points out that they are more than just temporary recruits brought in to handle menial tasks. The Toronto-based marketing expert offers the following 7 tips for effectively managing interns.

Create a plan for the intern, defining in general terms what you hope the intern will gain from his or her experience. Query the intern to determine what they personally hope to accomplish during their time at your workplace.

Develop a clear orientation program that introduces the intern to the intricacies of your organization and provides perspective on how it functions. It may be helpful to have staff members from each department highlight their respective areas of operation.

Designate a supervisor who will monitor the intern’s progress and provide constructive feedback. When the intern is ready, reinforce success by giving them tasks they have been trained to handle.

Ask the intern to research and prepare reports about different aspects of your operation. For example, ask them to examine the local competition and prepare a comparative analysis, or dissect your website and suggest ways to improve it.

Tech savvy interns can assist with social media. Ask them to audit and monitor your company’s social media channels and respond to postings.

Get them involved in marketing. Take advantage of their fresh, creative ideas for advertising and promotions.

Prepare a departure gift that is not necessarily expensive, but is meaningful. This will end the relationship on a positive note.

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