They are the new kids on the contingent block: Interns. Back in April 2010, the Department of Labor decided that interns were employees and had to be paid. From that moment on, interns -- already temporary in nature -- often become contingent workers.
Buyers have yet to recognize this fact. Staffing Industry Analysts’ recent Buyer Survey revealed that only 18 percent of buyers manage interns as part of their CW program; 69 percent have the interns managed by the HR department and — most dangerously — 13 percent surveyed said that it was left to the manager’s discretion.
Here’s the deal. Companies bring in interns when there’s a temporary need. If companies don’t get it right, there are huge compliance issues. However, there is a six-factor test that helps determines intern status.
And for those companies that often compensate interns in forms other than cash, watch out. That action triggers an immediate red flag. On the bright side, this is an opportunity for staffing firms. There are a lot of interns out there. It’s a big business for anyone who chooses to help manage them, and a big help for companies who want to avoid compliance issues.