Internships Make Big Impact for Entry-Level Finance and Accounting Applicants

April 24, 2007 ( - Half of chief financial officers (CFOs) say that internships make a substantial difference in their entry-level hiring decisions, according to a recent poll by online job service Accountemps.

The poll of 1,400 CFOs showed that apart from functional knowledge, 50% of executives say that whether or not entry-level accounting and finance applicants had an internship heavily influences their hiring decisions.

Other hiring influences citing by CFOs included referrals (24%), college alma mater (8%) or grade point average (5%).

“One of the biggest challenges new graduates face is a lack of professional experience,” said Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps, in a news release. “Students who complete one or more internships appeal to prospective employers because they often require less training and can begin contributing immediately in their roles.”