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I'm currently graduating from school and I'm currently on my final internship that will finish my studies. After my studies I'd like to continue working for this company. However I'm not sure how to promote myself towards the company, telling them that they could really use my expertise.

At this moment I'm interning as a Business IT specialist in a company that doesn't have any IT employees. I've heard my manager talk about the company wanting to expand in the IT department. Specifically in the area that would be perfect for me and would be close to being my dream-job.

I'm very introverted so I tend to be quiet unless I need information for my project. In which case I could talk for days. In other words, I'm not shy. So sucking up the my manager is out of the question.

Currently I'm doing a project for the company and at this moment the manager seems impressed at what I've designed/made so far and I intend to show off many more of my skills during this project.

Even though my manager has signaled to expand towards IT, it is currently outside the expertise of the company. So even in this regard I feel like I could help to give them information. I know I'm inexperienced, but I feel like I would be able to make great improvements to the company.

As for the company culture, it seems to be really open. Always innovating and looking for constructive feedback to improve themselves. So I feel that no matter what I say, as long as it's constructed I cant seem to offend anyone. I'll still tread carefully of course but this is the impression I seem to get.

So how can I promote myself towards my manager/company to convince them that they desperately need me?

  • 5
    Something you may want to consider as a fresh graduate going into the IT field is not to underestimate the benefit of working with more experienced colleagues in your early years. If you move into a company where there is nobody you can ask for guidance / discuss ideas with, you may find yourself not developing as quickly as you hoped. YMMV. – Darren Young Apr 6 '16 at 9:55
  • @DarrenYoung That is actually something I thought about too. While it may not be as beneficial as working with more experiences colleagues, I was planning on doing multiple courses and studies in the evening hours. However, to get the opportunity to work with other employees that do what I wish to do, is very low. So that's why I feel I'm making the right choice. – Migz Apr 6 '16 at 10:00
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    @Migz Even if you aren't around people who do exactly what you do, be aware that being a one person department is a huge risk for a new graduate. You can easily develop bad habits and become out of touch with industry norms. – Myles Apr 6 '16 at 13:09
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The best way to get hired from intern/temp/contractor/consultant to full-time is not to promote yourself, but to demonstrate your worth to the company. Always keep in the front of your mind, the value you bring to the table and be able to quantify it.

If you can say "I did 'x' which brought in revenue adding 'y' to the bottom line" or "I improved processes by implementing 'x' which saved the company 'y' annually in labor costs" your chances of getting in are far better than vague "they need me" arguments.

Even if they don't hire you, you have that mindset for your next interview and can demonstrate to your next prospective employer, something concrete and what real worth you will bring to their company.

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Depending on how the manager has been mentioning that they wish to expand IT (specifically to you or to a wider audience), it could be that they are looking/waiting for someone to pick up the ball and run with it. And perhaps hinting that they'd like you to do it.

Despite your perceived inexperience, this sounds like a great opportunity to make a real difference quite early in your career. Generally, opportunities such as these do not come all that often - so I suggest you grab it with both hands.

Based on your description of the company culture and your own personality, it seems you merely need to present some ideas to the manager and take it from there.

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If I was you , I would refrain from promoting myself. As you said , they do not have an IT division and you are an intern. You/the company do not objectively know what needs to be done to successfully execute the project.

As suggested by others, you probably need to work with an experienced IT team to understand the software processes better.

  • So your suggestion would be to "not" promote myself. Which leaves me with the question: what "should" I do? Should I do nothing and just ask for a job at the end of my internship or are you telling me I should look for other jobs where I would be able to build up this experience? – Migz Apr 6 '16 at 11:00
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    I would say the company will ask you if they intend to hire you. Just because you ask they are not gonna hire you. Looking for other options is best. Be prepared to speak up at interviews and come across as confident. Remember there are many great job opportunities out there. – Learner_101 Apr 6 '16 at 11:04
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Best way is to come up with a written plan outlining how the IT could be improved and the steps you could take to do so. Summarise it into one page (because that's all they'll probably read) and move forwards from there.

Vagueish discussions are great to give an idea of things, but an implementable plan is much better.

I don't know your bosses but this would impress me, although being in the industry I'd read the whole thing. Because it shows that you've put both thought and effort into it. Can't guarantee I'd give you a job though, but it would boost your chances.

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Keep in mind that many companies use interns as cheap labor. They like to dangle the prospect of a permanent job in front of them to keep them motivated, but never intend to follow through with it. When an internship is over, they just hire the next intern for the same position.

I am not saying that your company is necessarily one of these companies, but the possibility should not be overlooked.

You might want to check if there is anyone in your company which got a work contract after an internship. Also look for traces left by any previous interns who disappeared after their internship was over. When you find many ex-interns, but none which are still working at the company, then hiring you after your internship might be against the business practices. In that case you might rather use your energy to start looking for a job in another company to start when your internship is over.

  • I know that several interns have been hired as employees, and the monthly salary I receive is a lot higher than the average internship I've had available. But you raise a valid point. I've been receiving several other job offers where I can choose from in case I don't get employed, so I've got the worst case scenario covered. :) – Migz Apr 6 '16 at 12:27
  • The only ones who have it worse are grad students being used as slave labor for their professors who will use their work, publish, and take credit for it. – Richard Says Reinstate Monica Apr 6 '16 at 12:43

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