Interns through the eyes of the company

You probably know that Parallels has been working with talented students from almost the first day of its foundation. In many ways, because the company itself appeared thanks to the same young “talents”. MIPT and MSTU named after Bauman in general can be considered a cradle for our former and current leaders. How are things now?

Working with the Joons is expensive and painful

Over the years, hundreds of programmers have gone through the Parallels academic program. During this time, experience accumulated son of difficult mistakes and geniuses, and the paradoxes of the circle. For example, 10 Juns will not replace 1 good Middle. On the other hand, 1 talented intern is able to solve a problem that for five years no one else in the company has reached.

But the most important conclusion that I want to say about at the very beginning is that it all takes up a lot of time and resources, and the company should do this only if it really has the opportunity.

In Parallels, the junior training system is in a separate direction. The director of academic programs coordinates the work of 30 mentors and teachers within the company. This is a rather time-consuming process requiring complete immersion.

Potential interns interviewed by mentors. Their task is to determine the motivation and relevance of the recruits to the team. Each team leader has its own development direction and a set of research works. This allows interns to choose from a variety of options what they really want to do.

As head of recruitment at Parallels, I am extremely interested in developing our academic program. On the one hand, it allows us to close junior positions, on the other, it allows us to confidently hire people without experience. Currently, 12% of employees at Parallels are interns.

June are different

It so happened historically that the juniors in our company can “dig”, or they can “saw”. In the first case, this is research work that requires immersion in related fields, while the second direction fully meets the applied problems.

For example, for a long time we had the task of developing an interactive office layout. But the task, as always, is not a priority, so we would have lived without a scheme if the interns had not developed the SEATS application, marking out the staff layout. Now anyone who wants to visit the company’s corporate portal can quickly and easily find out the location of the employee they need. We scaled this project not only to our Moscow office.

Now it is used by colleagues in Malta and in Estonia. And there are quite a few such examples.
Just in case, I want to say right away that we have no exploitation of student work, we pay for the practice from the first day. But the amount of payment already depends on the effectiveness and time spent.

Talent Hunt

I probably won’t tell a secret by saying that the main source of talented trainees is leading technical universities. In our case, these are MIPT, Baumanka, Moscow State University, Pleshka and other universities. And here all the formats are good. I know that today many companies open their base departments, pay scholarships and conduct various events (research, electives, public lectures). Parallels is no exception.

We strive to participate in Career Days, in all kinds of open presentations of academic programs and so on. During student events, children have the opportunity to talk directly with future mentors, ask them questions and get first-hand answers. Given the level of our developers and the overall karma of Parallels, the results usually exceed expectations.

Another amazing thing is word of mouth. Naturally, students share with each other where they work, what they do, how they live there, what tasks they perform, and recommend their company to their friends. Someone recommends one friend, someone three, our record at the moment is 6 successfully arranged friends of one student.

To promise is not to marry

In fact, so that you do not have a blessed feeling from the narrative, I’ll say that we also have an outflow of recruits. In the end, value guidelines, life circumstances, priorities change. Young people are young and that they have everything quite dynamic. For its part, Parallels never limits the will of trainees to enslaving contracts. Below is an example of our funnel on the way from just listeners to full-fledged employees.

It is very important to understand mutual motivation at the start of a relationship. Interesting tasks, projects and products, the desire to become part of the star team, the desire to build a career in an international company or the banal desire to quickly move away from your parents … The more understandable the motives, the longer your relationship will be.

Another observation is that people rarely talk to each other. Often, interns are not ready to openly express dissatisfaction with something, suffering and suffering because of commonplace things. For example, we had a student who had been languishing for many months from an uncomfortable work chair.
Being tall, his knees rested on the desktop. This went on for quite some time. Finally, the mentor drew attention to this, and we quickly enough resolved this problem.

Or we had a guy who at some point had problems with academic performance. He had to study in two departments at once. For some reason, it seemed to him that there was no empty space at an interesting R&D and he had to gnaw granite in parallel directions. When we found out, we quickly resolved all the issues and optimized his training schedule.

The main idea – June without attention quickly withers and falls off! Therefore, “we take the handle”, we help with the dean’s office, we do not wait for complaints – we ask ourselves.

And who are the judges?

In fact, no less important than attracting interns to the company is the motivation of team leaders. They act as mentors and interact with the Joons every day. It depends on their motivation and energy whether the young engineer will be “seriously and permanently” with you.

What can be offered to highly qualified developers, in addition to material motivation? Firstly, the influx of "fresh blood" into the team. Secondly, any work with interns is a way to recognition and self-realization. We, as HR, periodically conduct coaching sessions, help with participation in external professional conferences, and organize internal educational programs.

Checklist for starting academic programs

›There is an objective need
›There are tasks
›There are resources
›Have competencies
›There is a material and technical base
›Have plans for the future and vision

What if you also want to join our academic program?

If you are a student at a Moscow university, go to our VK group to study research work, and if something seems close and interesting (or at least just interesting, but still far), feel free to write to the group, our director of academic programs will contact you and will tell you on the further process.

If you are no longer a student, but simply want to contact us, we are always happy to see your feedback on our vacancies here.

Thanks for your attention. I hope that the experience described in the article was useful to you. I invite you to exchange experiences in the comments on this material.

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