My first days starting out as an intern at my company were quite fun. Having pizza on a regular and going to watch movies in between work weren’t things I was really accustomed to. But starting off also had its challenges.

As more companies embrace the culture of internships, we need to keep some things in mind. Hiring an intern without a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) isn’t a good way to start the journey.  So to prevent yourself from experiencing unnecessary back and forth conversations with your next intern, here are a few things to get you started on the right foot.

Research

Employing a new intern is a perfect route to get honest feedback on how your brand is perceived. So let your new intern do a little research about what they think of your social media pages. This also gives your brand a great opportunity to check and balance on the feedback she might have.

Create a Social Media Calendar

Another thing you can have your intern do is put together digital media calendar or help contribute for a start. When I was a new to social media, one of the things I liked to do was plan out content. This is something your social media intern can get busy with. However it is advisable you put your intern through your brand messaging and ethics. And be sure he/she is clear with the Corporate Identity Manual (CIM) before creating content.

Web Monitoring

Bloggers will always talk about your brand, especially if you start making some headway in the industry. And half the time, you have no idea what’s being said if you’re a busy SME owner. This is another channel an intern can help out with. I currently use tools like Google Alerts, Mention and BuzzSumo to monitor mentions for Zoto.

But that’s just the first step. Your intern must go ahead to read through all these posts to be sure the information on them are correct. We had one guy inflating our promotional offers by about 10k for example. A simple comment or mail to the editor can hep straighten things out and get the right info across.

Make reports

Teach your intern how to put together periodic reports with engagement and growth analysis. You could get him/her to use social media analytics tools like Facebook insights and twitter analytics for a start. As a social media intern, they should be able to analyze past social performance on all your platforms. Not just for the knowledge growth of the brand but to also measure how well she is learning in your company.

These reports should be shared with all stakeholders (personnel that require this information) to give them a birds eye view of your current social standing.

Sign your intern up for online classes and tutorials

Being an amazing boss isn’t all about sponsoring lunch. As the saying goes, teach a man to fish, don’t just keep handing him fish (paraphrased) :). There are a lot of great – and free – online courses an intern can take. Check out websites like HootSuite University and skillshare, you’re sure to find some great content for them.

Remember your intern came to learn, it will be awful if they leave without you or your company adding to their knowledge base.