People can work remotely from nearly anywhere in the world today, creating a broad market for internships and giving businesses a large, diverse pool of young bright minds to hire. With more options comes increased competition. In today’s market, how can internship candidates make an impression?
- Good Communication
For an intern, one of the most important abilities to display to a potential employer is good communication. This may seem difficult when applying to a remote position, but luckily there are many ways to communicate that do not require being in the same room. Business forward social media such as LinkedIn allow people to connect and keep up with company news and updates. Before you even get to your interview, you can utilize LinkedIn by following the HealthEdge page and connecting with employees at the company.
Many people believe the most critical quality for a candidate is experience. For an intern, that is not the E word employers are necessarily looking for. “We don’t expect anyone to have a lot of experience coming in; we’re not looking necessarily for prior internships,” says Kelly Finn, Manager of Talent Attraction at HealthEdge.
The best trait you can put forward in your interviews is enthusiasm. “The things that we specifically look for are: are they inquisitive? Do they want to learn? Do they have good questions?” Finn says.
According to HealthEdge Vice President of Talent Attraction, Katie Conti, the best traits you can display in your interview are curiosity, motivation and friendliness. “I’ll tell my team, half-jokingly, ‘Don’t bring any jerks in.’ Bring in nice people who are interested in being here, who are going to be enthusiastic and eager to learn,” she says.
The next step is proving you’ve done your research. An informed, engaged, and confident applicant stands out among the rest when all other aspects of a candidate are evenly matched.
When asked where to begin the research process, Finn suggested starting with the website, “just poke around the different pages so you can get a sense for what the company does.”
“We don’t expect you to be able to sell the company…but we do expect that you’ve looked at the website and understand generally what we do,” says Conti. Interviews are not meant to be a quiz but knowing this information can only help you come across as more confident and serious about the potential role.
Knowing enough that you can engage in the conversation, rather than just asking questions from a prepared list, is also one way to stand out because it proves you’re curious and informed. Let your questions come from the conversation and your interviewer will be impressed. You want to make sure they can tell you don’t want a job; you want their job.
For HealthEdge, ensuring your values align with the company’s is incredibly important. Excellence, collaboration, continuous improvement, innovation, and diversity are part of the core principles at HealthEdge, and if those are things you see yourself feeling at home with, I urge you to apply. I always knew I wanted an internship before entering the “real” workforce, but I wanted to be able to make my contribution this summer matter—a place where I could make a difference, and HealthEdge gave that to me.
One of the best parts about working at HealthEdge is how open they are to change.
When asked what makes the company stand out, Manager of Talent Attraction Kelly Finn praised the HealthEdge’s mindset of “just because you’ve done something one way for a long time doesn’t mean we should necessarily keep doing it, and we’re always looking at new ways to look at a process differently.”
As a company with a technological base, we are always moving forward and looking for mechanisms of change to put us ahead of the industry. This shared way of thinking about the world makes working as an intern exciting and unpredictable because everything you say and do can make an impact on the company’s future.
A great example of how open to change the company is can be seen in the evolution of the intern program itself. When it was founded in 2018, the program was scattered. “It was kind of ‘hey does anyone want an intern? Raise your hand, okay we’ll find some people for you’ but we’ve put in a lot more structure around it since then,” Finn explained.
Now, the HR team tailors each position for a specific department, and managers who want an intern must create an onboarding list of things they would assign their intern if they were to receive one, making sure every intern can be busy and fulfilled.
The intern program has also since employed the idea of having the interns work in teams to complete challenges and earn points throughout the summer, which adds a light, competitive flare to the job as well as opportunities to socialize that the pandemic has rendered so limited. The program is relatively young, as this is only the third summer, but there has already been so much improvement. This is because the heads of the program sat down and reflected on where they were lacking and how they can make it better, and that is something a lot of companies don’t have the maturity to do.
Another way in which HealthEdge’s culture really stands out among the masses are the monthly iBelong seminars founded in June 2020 in response to a racial injustice, where employees meet and discuss a multitude of topics that most workplaces find uncomfortable and untouchable. It is a safe space where people discuss how topics such as racism, sexism, and homophobia have affected them and how we can go about making a change. The seminar opens up with facts and information and then discussion questions guide an open communication between whoever wants to talk or listen, and it is an incredibly progressive event to experience.
You may wonder the benefits of being such a caring, tight-knit workplace, but the team believes it is an integral key to success. “It makes a big difference, feeling that the people that you’re working with are all rowing in the same direction and care about you as an individual, as well as care about the work that they’re doing,” says Katie Conti. Everyone is working together to produce the best work they can, and you can’t ask for much more than that.
HealthEdge was named national Elite Winner in Employee Achievement and Recognition designation for the 2020 Medium-Size Best and Brightest Companies to Work For, Top 101 in the Nation®. We also were named 2020 Top Places to Work by the Boston Globe Media Partners Group. If this work environment resonates with you, consider joining the team.
The HealthEdge internship program is designed to set its interns up not only to succeed at this company but in the job world and beyond. This year’s class of 28 interns are remotely learning how to navigate the world of healthcare software as well as working life in general, thanks to the many tools offered by the program and the warm environment that makes HealthEdge feel like home.
HealthEdge understands how complicated the healthcare software industry can be, especially to someone new. To accommodate those feeling intimidated or uninformed, there are HealthEdge101 sessions given by each department and product demonstrations once a week to provide more details on the different divisions and products within the company. They are helpful, informative, and engaging, which helps the interns connect with the material and people behind it. Each week a different department head will present to teach us more about sides of the company we don’t get to see when working in our own bubble.
The HR team helps the interns prepare to be better candidates for future employers through LinkedIn profile-building workshops, resume writing sessions, career coaching, and mock interviews.
When asked what she hopes interns learn during a summer at HealthEdge, Kelly Finn, Manager of Talent Attraction, says, “It’s life skills you carry for a long time going forward. It’s not just what did you learn today; it’s learning how to talk about yourself in an interview, how to present your resume, how to present your LinkedIn profile.”
The LinkedIn workshop taught me how to navigate the platform and make my profile stand out to recruiters. My career coach, Jana Matra, gave me specific tips on how to speak up more during Zoom meetings and prepared me for mock interviews, and those skills will stick with me way beyond this summer.
No two interns will have the same experience, but every intern can agree on how important the tasks we’re given are to the company.
“I am glad my managers have enough trust in me to give me these big responsibilities,” says Customer Success Intern Raquel Simon. She creates onboarding documents to help new employees in each department adjust more easily to HealthEdge.
Tech Writing intern Faith Stynchula creates user guides for the products we sell, and she says the projects she has been offered have allowed her to represent the hard work the company has done, and she’s honored to be given such a big responsibility that’s valuable to her career as a developing professional.
This internship, regardless of which field, puts a conscious effort into preparing us for the real world.
When asked what the biggest takeaways from a HealthEdge summer internship should be, Finn answered, “we want the interns to have something meaningful to put on their resumes, some real-world contributions that they’ve made to HealthEdge as a company that they can share with employers or with their school.”
This is a testament to just how much HealthEdge wants you to succeed, not just for them but for yourself.