Case Study: Enders Analysis Internship Scheme

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We have run an internship scheme for many years, and often hire from this talent pool. For much of Enders Analysis’ history the company was run almost exclusively by senior analysts. However, the company found, in part through the internship programme, the enormous reward in hiring young professionals in terms of fresh perspective and knowledge, as well as more efficiently distributing tasks so that our senior analysts could focus on providing subscribers with insightful thought leadership on an increasing range of issues and industries.

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What started as an informal offering to the children of friends and family has morphed into a more sophisticated and carefully run programme, with open access to all. We have never advertised our internship scheme anywhere but our website, and yet the number of applicants continues to grow. The need to formalise the process was spurred on by this increasing demand: in 2016 we took on 18 interns! The full time staff of Enders Analysis is around 25, of which just over 50% are under 30, so we are a very youthful organisation even before counting the interns.

Intern intake:
12 in 2014
16 in 2015
18 in 2016
We take young people from the age of 16 upwards, and place them within the team for stints ranging from a 2 week work experience to 6 month placements. Several interns have returned in subsequent years and it is often these people that we hire. Interns come from diverse educational and cultural backgrounds. We have never required a particular degree to work in Enders Analysis – economics, maths and politics are of equal value to students of the humanities, theology and science backgrounds. We find that this diversity is a great asset when dealing with new areas of interest, and this can often lead to incredibly useful knowledge sharing. For example, one recent geography grad taught the team how to chart data on a map – a commonplace tool for her, but an invaluable new technique for the team.Enders Analysis has always believed in paying interns for their work and giving authorship credits whenever a valuable contribution has been made. Interns are often surprised at the degree of responsibility and ownership they can take in working on reports for the company, and we have found that this gives them a greater drive to succeed and produce their best work. Interns are equal participants in conversations on the direction of a report, and, depending on their initiative and ability, can sometimes be the lead author on the paper. They are given guidance and can freely discuss the direction of the paper, seek help and peer review from colleagues, and develop a complex thesis in the knowledge that it will be challenged and reviewed before publication. We treat interns as equal to full time employees, and expect the same excellent work from them.

Before arriving, several members of the team will discuss the best projects to include interns on so that they are distributed evenly throughout the team and their skills are put to best use. We will ask them for a phone or in-person interview to get to know them, their interests and academic focus, their strengths and weaknesses, general curiosity and personality type, as well as areas that will need additional training, particularly excel proficiency, confidence in using large data sets, analytical reasoning. We sometimes recommend that interns study excel formulas and techniques before starting their internship.

Enders Analysis is a tightly-knit, family company with an open and generous culture. We make it a point to include interns in all company activities, from annual progress meetings and celebratory lunches, to cultural excursions in local galleries or black tie outings to Glyndebourne, team bonding drinks at the pub and birthday parties (everyone gets a cake!). We value our interns incredibly highly, and many strong and lasting friendships have been made through the programme.

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