The majority of advertising internships end with the grad being offered a job, B&T research has revealed.
Of those who completed unpaid work within ad agencies, 52% said their time led to offers of paid employment. That figure jumps to 78% for paid interns.
Advertising internships also proved to be more beneficial for the students than the business, according to 55% of unpaid interns and 67% of paid.
As in other areas of marketing communications, paid advertising internships are rare.
Just 13% of those who said they completed advertising internships were paid.
The most common running time for unpaid internships is up to two months and one month or less while the majority of paid placements run for up to 12 months and up to two months, according to survey respondents.
Unpaid interns said the most prominent benefits of their placements were gaining a better understanding of the industry or business (30%), the chance to network (25%) and 24% said they were an opportunity to practice or acquire new skills.
For paid interns the top benefit is a chance to practice and acquire new skills (44%) and the chance to network (33%).
One survey respondent who completed an advertising internship said: “All the internships I completed were in the knowledge I would not be paid. I wanted to do them to increase my chances of being employed in the media/communications industries.”
“Thankfully, each agency and/or organisation were kind and wanted to help. Sometimes I felt in the way, but overall each experience helped me in same way or another.
“Do I think interns should get paid. No, I don't. However, I do think transportation costs should be covered.”
Another unpaid ad intern said: “I felt it was invaluable. I was a little annoyed that they couldn't offer me a role after 6 months (3 days a week for free!), but it opened so many doors for me.”
The figures are pulled from B&T's survey 'Adland: An intern's perspective'. Full results here. Keep an eye out for B&T's feature in coming weeks for a holistic view of the intern issue.