There are certain steps that you need to follow, if you wish to get an internship in the retail industry:
- Identify the specific retail companies you’d wish to intern at: So this is a question of creating a shortlist of retail companies that you’d love to serve as an intern at. You may select companies on the basis of their reputation (as good places to intern). You may also select companies on the basis of their prestige/brand popularity. At another level, you may select a company based on the fact that it offers many internship opportunities [meaning that your chances of getting an internship opportunity there are good]. Or you may select a company on the basis of the fact that your friends/people you know are interning there – meaning that if you get an internship chace there, you wouldn’t be lonely. Or it may just be a scenario where you have always loved to work for company X or Y/where you have always envisioned yourself working for company X or Y. So that motivates you to seek an internship opportunity there… All in all, the most important thing at this step is simply to come up with a list of the retail companies you wish to intern at.
- Search online for internship opportunities at those companies: Most retail companies nowadays have online job portals/careers pages, where internship opportunities are also listed. So having identified the companies you’d love to intern at (in step 1 above), the next step may be to go to each of those companies’ jobs portal/careers page – to look for internship opportunities there. The typical jobs portal/careers page nowadays has a space for entry of keywords. So in most cases, you just enter the keyword ‘intern’ (or keywords specific to the internship you are looking for), then specify the location you wish to intern at. The system will then return links to all open internship opportunities (at the retail company whose jobs portal/careers page you are visiting). There are also websites where internship opportunities from various companies are listed/aggregated, and you may consider visiting such sites and searching for retail internships through them. There is also the possibility of simply using your search engine to search for internships. Like, for instance, if you wish to intern at company X, you can conduct a Google search for ‘Company X internships’. This way, you not only get to see any open internship opportunities at the said company X, but also possibly access information posted by other individuals who have previously gone through company X’s internship program…
- Network with people who are interning in the retail industry: By networking with individuals who are interning in the retail industry or with people who have interned in the retail industrypreviously, they may eventually tell you how they got the internship opportunities. You can then use the paths they followed to earn yourself a similar internship opportunity. They may also give you advice on what exactly it takes to earn an internship opportunity within the retail industry. At yet another level, they may tell you about internship opportunities at the companies they are interning at or at the companies they interned at. Those may be internship opportunities that you wouldn’t otherwise have know about [as they may be internship opportunities that haven’t been publicly advertised].
- Apply for internship opportunities at the desired retail companies: In most cases nowadays, applications for internships are done online. So (in most cases) you go to the jobs portal/careers page of the company you wish to intern at, search for internship opportunities there, and once you find one that interests you, you click on the ‘Apply’ button for it. Then you proceed to fill in the application form and await to see if you will be one of the individuals selected for the internship interview.
- Prepare well for the retail internship interviews: If you are called for the internship interview, you need to prepare yourself well for it. Remember, whether you get the retail internship will depend to a great extent on how well you perform during the interview. Don’t assume that the interview is just a formality. It is not. Where many equally qualified people apply for the same internship opportunity, it is only through the interview that the decision is made on who is to be taken and who is to miss. In other words, it is possible for you to miss out on an internship you are otherwise well qualified due to your (poor) performance during the interview. The most important thing, when it comes to an internship interview, is to demonstrate that you are a responsible and ‘serious’ person. You also need to have the basics of the technical area you are seeking an internship in at your fingertips. That is because you may be subjected to some sort of test (including an aptitude test) as part of your retail internship interview.