In my last blog post I mentioned that for a number of students the internship experience can be a somewhat awkward first trip into the job world and the idiosyncratic rituals of the office. If the college and the job worlds were two big circles in a venn diagram, internships fall into that center category, with college and professional mannerisms overlapping. We have noticed some interesting facts about how students apply to positions, occasionally bringing college habits into the job world. One big example: Late Night Applications!
Monitoring activity has been full of insight as we aggregate large scale application information for the first time ever. One noticeable contrast between interns and employers can be found in messaging and application process: nearly 50%of students applied to positions after 9 o clock and nearly every student applied for positions after 5 pm (end of business hours). While it is common for students to stay up until 2 or 3 in the morning (either working or socializing), it’s interesting that most students don’t think about the difference between their college hours and that of a typical office. What kind of first impression do you think an employer gets when they see an email from John Doe with a time stamp at 4AM? John Doe are you going to be mature and awake throughout a day at the office? Not to mention most employers are typically swamped in the morning going through emails, so adding your resume to this batch is an easy way to get lost in the mix.
In thinking back to my internship applications I did not act much differently, and for the most part employers recognize and won’t hold such a detail against you. But, part of taking on an internship means consciously leaving behind college habits and learning as much as possible about the professional industry you want to make a career in. Maybe if you are applying for a position as a software developer (known for having nocturnal hours) applying at night is the status quo. What matters most is thinking about what the person who will be hiring you expects and looks for in an ideal internship candidate.
Recommendation: Apply for positions between the hours of one and four, when most employers are least busy and you can make the best impression.