Internship to Full-Time Job: Making the Transition

Can you turn your internship into a full-time job?

Well done, you’ve landed an internship! It’s time to step into the workplace and leave worries about grades, assignments, and classes behind. But did you know that many companies end up hiring their interns? Yes, internships can lead to permanent positions. If you’re hoping to be one of the chosen ones, this article has everything you need to know about how to turn an internship into a full-time job.

Strategies to turn your internship into a full-time job

Let’s be honest. Work is – hard work. It may take some adjustment to make the move from college to business, and that requires effort in itself. On top of that, you still need to learn a new role and make a great impression, as well as possibly getting used to commuting and working full-time internship hours. 

We think it’s worth the effort, though. At best, you’ll end up with a permanent job in a field you love. At worst, you’ll still have some experience for your resume and some new connections – and who knows where they could take you in the future? 

Let’s take a look at some ways that you can swing this experience in your favor. 

Do your research

Finding the right internship is vital if you’re aiming to convert your internship into a full-time job. Research the company, the role, and the culture ahead of time, to make sure you’re truly interested and committed. 

This research will not only help you to find the right internship, it will also make sure you’re prepared on your first day and beyond. Showing up entirely clueless about the company and what you’ve signed up for isn’t going to make the best first impression. Showing up able to hold an informed conversation about the business will reassure your colleagues and give them confidence in your credibility going forward. 

Make sure you’re clear on the requirements of your role, too. Understanding what’s expected of you will help you to prioritize and deliver. 

Prioritize punctuality and reliability

It should go without saying that turning up on time, every day, is non-negotiable. If you’re late during your internship, what does that say about your commitment to a full-time position? 

Similarly, you’ll want to prove your reliability. If you promise to do something, make sure it gets done – and gets done on time. If you’re asked to do something but feel you can’t, ask for more information or guidance so that you can complete the task to a high standard. When people know they can depend on you, they’re more likely to trust you with additional responsibilities. 

Behave like you’re being watched 

Treat the internship as an extended interview. Your attitude and performance will be judged if there’s the potential for a full-time job at the end of the internship, so you’ll need to put your best foot forward every day. 

Your managers will be looking for professionalism, enthusiasm, and a positive attitude, as well as the hard skills and knowledge the role demands. However tired and unsure you are, slap a smile on your face and show you’re keen. Even top executives suffer from imposter syndrome; just remember there’s a reason you were chosen as the intern and you’ve got this. 

Expert tip: If you can identify and solve a problem for the team, you’ll not only be one step closer to a full-time job, you’ll also have an impressive achievement for your resume!

Build your network 

One of the main benefits of any internship is the opportunity to build a network of industry professionals. Take any chance you can to meet with others in your company and the industry in general and ask them about their role, their career path, and their advice. Listen, offer help where you’re able, and above all, be friendly!

Aim to be visible. Rather than disappearing to the local coffee shop every breaktime, show your face in the tea room or canteen, break the ice at the start of meetings, and ask colleagues about their evening at the start of each day.

Even if you don’t turn this internship into a full-time job, these connections may be helpful later in your career. If you’re lucky enough to be kept on when the internship ends, you’ll already have plenty of contacts in the business. 

Watch and learn

An internship is a great learning opportunity. Identify people in the business that you respect and try to learn from them. Whether you’re learning about the role, the department, the company or the wider industry, showing that you’re eager to acquire knowledge and learn new skills won’t go unnoticed. You’ll be demonstrating your commitment, as well as acquiring valuable insight and expertise for the future. 

Ask questions

This one can’t be underestimated. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that asking questions will expose how little you know – after all, you’re there to learn! If you’re not sure how to complete a task, ask. If you want to learn more about a product, ask. If you’re interested in someone’s job – ask. 

Most people like to help – they can show off how much they know and being needed makes them feel all warm and fuzzy. As a bonus, your enthusiasm and commitment to learning will reflect well on you. 

That said, don’t just ask questions for the sake of it. If you could find out the answer yourself or the question seems irrelevant, you’ll just be distracting your colleagues from their own work – and they won’t thank you for it. 

Work hard – and then some

If you want to turn your internship into a full-time job, doing the bare minimum isn’t advisable. You need to be seen to be working hard. If you’ve completed all your work, or have some downtime, ask a colleague if they need a hand. At a minimum, offer to make the coffee. Being seen to go above and beyond will strengthen your position if a permanent role is available. 


After a long week at work, you’re likely to be exhausted! You’ve met new people, shaken more hands than you can count, done jobs you’ve only imagined, and worked longer hours than you thought possible. You still have one more job, though, before you can kick off your shoes and pour yourself a glass of wine. 

Reflect on the week. What went well? What do you need to work on? What did you find challenging? What have you learned? Clarifying these points in your mind means that you can start every week afresh, with purpose and direction. 

Ask for the job!

You’re smashing the internship! You’ve had good feedback, done everything that’s been asked of you, and settled into the office routine. Everything’s looking rosy and you’re sure that you’ll convert your internship into a full-time job. 

Does the business know that’s your plan, though? They may assume you’re planning to return to college to finish your course or head back home to find a more local role. Make sure you’re in the running for a permanent position by scheduling time to speak to your manager and emphasizing that you’re interested in a full-time job. We’ve got more advice on how to do this below. 

Connect on LinkedIn and stay in touch

Of course, there’s no guarantee of a job at the end. If there’s no budget for a full-time role or there are new interns lined up to take your place, you’ll have to accept it for the great experience it was. Make sure you connect with your colleagues, managers and staff from other departments on LinkedIn and stay in touch, because you never know when a role might become available. Don’t forget to ask for references or LinkedIn recommendations  before you leave.

Expert tip: Leave on a high by taking the time to personally thank everyone who has helped you throughout your internship. 

Signs your internship will turn into a job

Of course, you’re keen to know if all your hard work has paid off. Well, unfortunately we can’t make any promises. Rather than pestering your line manager with constant “will I get hired after the internship?” questions, look out for these positive signs. 

You’re invited

Whether you’re invited to meetings, presentations, or post-work events, being included as part of the team is a great sign. It shows that your input is valued, they’re putting effort into your professional development, and they appreciate your company. 

You’re given more responsibility

They say if you work hard, your only reward will be more work – but in the case of an internship, it’s a great sign! Becoming trusted enough to take on additional responsibilities and having long-term commitments is a clear sign that your output is valued and your hard work has been noticed. 

You get great feedback

Nobody needs to give you great feedback, so if they take the time to encourage you and notice the quality of your work it’s a sure sign you’re heading in the right direction. Bonus points if the feedback is from management rather than peers!

You’re asked for your opinion 

If your colleagues thought your opinion wasn’t worth listening to, they wouldn’t waste their time asking for it. If you’re consistently being asked for your input and providing well-considered answers, you’re heading along the right track. 

There’s no-one breathing down your neck

If you have a boss that’s willing to step back and trust you to manage your own workload, you’re doing well. It won’t suit everyone’s management style, so even if you’re checking all the right boxes you may still be saddled with a micromanager. However, being left to your own devices is a positive sign. 

The company is on a growth trajectory

As an intern, you can’t really influence the company’s expansion. But, if it’s on the cards, new staff will be required to support that growth. And who better than someone who already knows the company? Keep an eye out for potential here. 

As we said, there are no guarantees. Even if you see these signs, businesses can’t take people on just because they like them. Sadly, hiring new staff needs to fit within their budget and future plans. If you spot these signs, though, the least you can expect is a glowing reference. 

How to ask for a full-time position after an internship

Your internship is coming to an end, but no-one has mentioned converting the internship into a full-time job. It’s time to get proactive. Take the bull by the horns and just ask! Okay, it’s probably easier said than done, so we’ve got some tips for you: 

  • Schedule a short meeting: It’s not something you can spring on your manager while they’re trying to juggle 10 other tasks, so schedule 10 minutes away from their desk.
  • Start by thanking them: Everyone likes to feel appreciated. It takes time and energy to onboard and support an intern, so make sure you recognize that. 
  • Discuss what’s gone well: Tell them what you’ve gained from the experience and why it’s been valuable for your career development. 
  • Sell yourself: Remind them what you’ve contributed to the team in the time you’ve been there, so that they can see you’d be a valuable hire.
  • Ask: Ask if they would consider converting the internship to a full-time job – show enthusiasm here!
  • Wind up graciously: Whether the answer is yes, no, or maybe, end on a positive note, reiterate your thanks, and ask them to stay in touch or update you. 

Internship to full-time job email sample

Of course, asking face-to-face is the ideal scenario, but if, for whatever reason, an email would be more appropriate, we’ve got a sample here that you can adapt to your situation. Remember not to copy it wholesale, but to tweak it to your personal situation. 

Re: End of internship

Dear Elza, 

As my internship finishes next week, I wanted to take a moment to thank you for the warm welcome and on-going support that I’ve received at Acme Enterprises. I genuinely appreciate the time that both you and the wider team have taken to immerse me in the role and explain your processes. It has given me a great insight into FMCG operations and the supply chain in particular, which I will be able to take forward in my future career. 

I particularly enjoyed working on the relaunch project, as I was able to manage the packaging element independently and met all compliance requirements to enable timely delivery.

If there is a chance to convert the internship into a full-time job, please know that I would snap up the opportunity! I feel like part of the team and am keen to continue my career with Acme. 

If no role exists at the moment, please do stay in touch and let me know if a suitable position becomes available in the future. 

Either way, thank you again for the experience. I have really enjoyed and valued my time here. 

Best regards, 


Add the experience to your resume

Whether you transition from internship to full-time job or not, you’ll have some fantastic experience to add to your resume. Finally, you’ll have acquired some industry-relevant experience to support your next steps on the career ladder rather than needing to rely on part-time student jobs. Do you know how best to include that experience on your resume though? 

Here’s what the experts at TopResume advise.

Adding internship experience to a resume

Under the Professional Experience header, you’ll need a sub-heading for each job. You’ll need to include your job title, plus the name of the company, the location, and the dates you worked there. If you didn’t manage to change the internship into a full-time job, you can include “internship” in brackets, to explain the short duration. 

Underneath that, add a short description of your role and a bulleted list of achievements. Transitioning the role from internship to full-time job could certainly be one of them!

For example: 

Technical Support Assistant (Internship)

ABC Theatre Group, Texas

Provided technical IT support across a group of theaters, with exposure to the IT helpdesk, cybersecurity team, and data warehouse team. 

  • Handled up to 20 incoming helpdesk calls each day and provided first-line troubleshooting

  • Played a key role in restoring critical services following a cybersecurity attack

  • Secured a full-time role, having initially started as an intern, having been recognized for a commitment to resolving problems and a can-do attitude 

Make the most of your internship opportunity!

Of course, there’s no point doing an internship if you’re not going to use it as a building block for your future. One of the ways you can do that is to show it off on your resume and LinkedIn profile. You’ll have developed plenty of great skills and gained valuable experience that will make you a desirable employee in the future. 

If you’re not sure whether you’ve made the most of the experience on your resume, why not send it to the experts at TopResume for a free resume review? They’ll provide feedback to help you put the finishing touches on your most important job-search tool.

Recommended reading: 

Related Articles:

Source link
All Materials on this website/blog are only for Learning & Educational purposes. It is strictly recommended to buy the products from the original owner/publisher of these products. Our intention is not to infringe any copyright policy. If you are the copyright holder of any of the content uploaded on this site and don’t want it to be here. Instead of taking any other action, please contact us. Your complaint would be honored, and the highlighted content will be removed instantly.

Leave a Comment

Share via
Copy link