Finding the Right Company

How to find the best fit for you

Jordan Chou


The Company

Believe it or not, a lot of companies offer technology internships. They may not be the flashy cutting edge company you dream about but they still provide very good opportunities. Many banks (especially the big four in Australia) hire technology interns and graduates. Technology internships can be found in many different industries.

Have a look at the following list for some ideas of where to look/apply!

The Role

There are actually several roles that your degree fits into. Each of the roles takes advantage of different skillsets and is quite important as it correlates with pretty much what your roles and responsibilities are so it is important to make sure you understand what role you are applying for and how it fits within the company.

Some roles include (but are not limited to):

  • Developer
  • IT Advisory
  • Security Advisory
  • Quality Assurance
  • IT Support
  • Product Manager

Developer

This type of role typically involves developing and designing software. This includes web development, frontend, backend and possibly a mixture of all three. These roles generally require a strong technical background and the ability to work well in teams.

IT Advisory

This type of role is typically a client-facing role and involves advising clients of certain software and configurations. These roles usually involve a set of software that the company has decided to specialises in, e.g. SAP, Salesforce, or Microsoft software. These roles emphasise strong soft skills as it involves a lot of client interaction. Usually in these roles you will be implementing and installing certain software that will be suited to the needs of your client. You are usually contracted out to other company's by yours in these roles.

Security Advisory

Similar to above this is a client-facing role. Typically you will be advising clients on the security of their systems or software. This could involve penetration tests or other similar security assessments.

Quality Assurance

This is a role that involves software testing. Generally in this role you will be testing software to ensure that it is of high quality and meets certain requirements. This could be an in-house role or could be a client-facing role where your company contracts out to another.

IT Support

This is a role that involves the management of the IT infrastructure and systems of a company. This role typically involves responsibilities like making sure systems are up and running for the employees of the company (email, servers etc.). The role can also involve troubleshooting certain hardware and software problems for employees of the company.

Product Manager

These type of roles are a product focused role within a company. This role typically involves planning, forecasting, and marketing for a product within a company. This role usually combines technical abilities along with some business oriented knowledge.

Of course, there are many other types of roles you can fit your degree into, general roles such as Tax R\&D are always looking for people with technical degrees. Ensure that you research what the role entails before you take it.

The Company

The roles above apply to all sorts of companies. Companies exist in many different industries (obviously) and depending on the industry the company is in they would have a different focus.

It is also important to examine the work culture of a company. This involves things like values and how your values aligns with the companies. Companies that focus on employee well-being will generally be more enjoyable to work for.

Things like dress code could also be an indicator of a company's work culture.

Another factor can be the technology stack that is used at the company. Working at a company which uses a proprietary stack may lend to difficulty translating skills across in the future, but a company which uses a stack which is similar to what you've worked with in the past may give you an advantage. The stack that a company uses can tell you about where they are likely to head in the future. Overall it is important to examine the types of technologies that company works with and how enjoyable that will be for you.

The Location

It is also important to take into account where the role is located. Generally client facing roles require a lot of travelling to and from client locations within a city. For an internship moving to another location may be appealing, as it lets you experience a new city within a set timeframe.

Some points of interest include: cost of living in the city, if you do not know anyone you can stay in the city with it is important to look at the cost of rent in the location.

The Pay and Benefits

Have a good look at what the company offers in terms of pay and benefits. In you have many offers this could be a major decider in which offer you choose.

In my opinion, the pay for an internship is less important than the learning opportunities but can still be a factor to consider, especially if you are relocating to another state. For roles requiring relocation you shoudl also look at whether the company provides a relocation bonus or not.