Unpaid internships can be mutually beneficial for students and employers: students receive invaluable workplace experience and employers benefit from the opportunity to begin training the next generation of talent. However, you must be aware of the distinction between paid and unpaid internships.
Internships in the for-profit, private sector will most often be viewed as employment by the federal Department of Labor (DOL), unless the test described below is met. Interns who qualify as employees rather than trainees, typically must be paid at least the minimum wage and overtime compensation for hours worked over 40 in a workweek.
According to the DOL, however, if all of the following six factors are met, an employment relationship does not exist between an intern and the company that sponsors the participant.
1. The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training that would be given in an educational environment;
2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern;
3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff;
No time to prepare or deliver training? With BLR®’s TrainingToday site, your employees can start taking essential training courses the same day you sign up. Workers (and supervisors) train at their convenience, 24/7. We track, and you save with this turnkey solution. Yes, it really can be this simple. Learn more.
4. The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern, and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.
If no employment relationship exists, the participants are not subject to the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.
These distinctions regarding internships can be hard to wade through unless your employees are trained in how to distinguish the nuances and abide by the various employment laws.
Unfortunately, up until now, training has been a real challenge—there’s such a load of extraneous planning, preparing, and tracking involved. But we’ve got good news—BLR’s editors have developed a unique new program that’s done all that work for you.
It’s called TrainingToday. This turnkey service requires no setup, no course development time, no software installation, and no new hardware. Your employees can self-register, and training can be taken anytime (24/7), anywhere there is a PC and an Internet connection. Courses take only about 30 minutes to complete.
No time to prepare or deliver training? With BLR®’s TrainingToday, your employees can start taking essential training courses the same day you sign up. Workers (and supervisors) train at their convenience, 24/7. We track, and you save with this turnkey solution. Yes, it really can be this simple. Learn more.
The TrainingToday site automatically documents training. As trainees sign on, their identifications are automatically registered. When the program is completed, the trainee’s score is entered. So, when you want to see who has been trained on any subject, or look at the across-the-board activity of any one employee, it’s all there, instantly available to you, your boss, an inspector—even a plaintiff’s attorney.
Course certificates can be automatically generated from within the training center and are automatically retained for recordkeeping purposes.
Unlimited Training That Won’t Bust the Budget
Best of all, in these budget-crunching times, BLR’s TrainingToday site costs only a fraction of what you would pay for a learning management system (LMS). You always know exactly what training will cost, no matter how many programs you use, or how many times you use them. There’s just one low annual fee—for unlimited training—calculated by the size of your workforce. Budget once and you’re done!
These are all motivational, actionable courses—for both employees and supervisors—in such key areas as sexual harassment, FMLA, diversity, communication, USERRA, recruiting, and many more. The courses are kept up to date to reflect federal and state regulatory changes, and what’s more, BLR adds new programs continually.
BLR’s TrainingToday site also includes a selection of safety courses—you decide whether you want just the HR courses, the safety courses, or both HR and safety.
If it sounds as if we’re excited about this new service, well, we are—and so is the Software & Information Industry Association, which just voted the BLR Employee Training Center (forerunner of TrainingToday) the “Best Workforce Training Solution.” Find out what all the buzz is about—sign up for a no-obligation trial to TrainingToday.