How to Pick an IT Internship that’s Right for You

Aleksandra Skalec | 27 Mar | 6 min read

If you’re searching for your first job in IT, you might get overwhelmed by the number of opportunities and different options to choose from. Plenty of companies offer summer internships programmes that could help you kick start your career and learn the ropes of working in a software development company. Here are some tips to consider when trying to choose your first IT internship. 

Think about what you want to learn

This is the right moment for you to search for your own path in IT. There are plenty of options to choose from, which might be confusing when you’re still taking your first steps. There is of course development, which is already a big thing on its own. Although programming is surely the core of any IT company, it’s not where your career opportunities end. You can explore many other fields, such as design, software testing, marketing or sales. 

However, if you’re searching for your first IT job, chances are you already have your mind set on a certain field of technology. If that is the case for you, make sure to check if the internships or projects offered by the company you have your eye on match your expectations and previous experiences. Most recruitment professionals today are open to a chat and ready to answer any questions, so if you’re not sure if the job would be right for you and your skill level, don’t be afraid to ask. 

Search for a no-nonsense tasks policy 

No one likes doing things just for the sake of it. It’s good to see that your work makes a difference. It might be a great overall experience to do your internship for a software giant, but an elaborate review infrastructure and a low-trust policy might cause you to end up never seeing your code live. 

Choosing a smaller company might seem like the learning opportunities may be more limited for you, but you’re probably in for a surprise there. Working for a smaller company will help you see the software development process from a wider perspective. You get to see the project go through all the different stages, from sales and client workshops to development, design and testing. At Miquido, we make sure that interns start working on real projects and tasks from the very beginning. That way new Miquido interns can learn faster and more efficiently. 

Check what you’re signing up for

Although many IT companies use similar work methods, it’s good to know a thing or two about the company culture before you decide to apply for your first job. It might not sound like something you want to consider at the very beginning, but it’s good to look at the bigger picture. If you decide to stick around after your internship is over, it’s good to know what you’re signing up for. It might be a good idea to simply browse the internet in search of some employee opinions on the companies that you shortlisted. 

Life is not all about your career, and many companies offer fun activities to help you maintain your work-life balance, such as team sports, drawing classes or board game meet-ups. Make sure your chosen company is active in this area, as it shows much more than just a fun attitude – it shows care for their employees. 

Do your research on learning and knowledge-sharing opportunities. Is there a training budget? Will you have some time for self-development? It’s a good sign if your chosen software house offers some development opportunities and fosters a growth-friendly atmosphere for its employees. It could be community meet-ups, extra language classes or learning materials available at the office.

See if you’ll have someone to ask questions

The first few weeks in a new work environment might be stressful and overwhelming. It’s good to opt for a company that will grant you your own Yoda – a mentor who will guide you through the whole onboarding process smoothly and help you understand how the whole company works. It’s not only about the organisation though. You’ll need someone who’ll answer your job-related questions and help you whenever you’re not sure how to complete a task. Make sure you’ll have that person during your internship time. 

If I were a rich man… 

Man does not live on bread alone, but let’s be honest – it’s an important part. Don’t let yourself be fooled by all the rosy internship offers with a bunch of important responsibilities for you and not much more than that. Expecting you to work for free doesn’t really paint a bright picture of the company. 

Join Miquido’s Summer Internship Programme 

Internships are a great way to get a head start on improving your skills, making new professional contacts and, yes, earning some extra money! We’re searching for young talent to join us at Miquido for the summer, with a very real chance to stay longer!

Click here to check out the list of internships we offer this year: Node.js Developer, Data Scientist, Android Developer… and much more. Take your pick, apply by March 31st and… see you in a few months!