Aerospace and defense contractors have come up with ways to enable their interns to work virtually as they continue their efforts to build up their workforce amid the coronavirus pandemic, Government Executive reported Tuesday.
â€œFrom the time that we first recognized the COVID virus as a potential challenge, to the time where we had completely overhauled our program was about 11 days,â€ said Peter Brooks, vice president of talent acquisition at Northrop Grumman. "In an industry that sometimes isn't recognized for agility, I'm proud of the innovative way that we've approached that on everything from the mechanics around their acquiring IDs and badges to their new employee orientation."
Lockheed Martin is using Zoom and Slack software to establish connectivity with their interns.
â€œWe are creating different kinds of space and opportunities for them to connect in a different way than what historically our interns have had the opportunity to,â€ said Jean Wallace, VP of workforce solutions at Lockheed. â€œWe're looking at it as really creating a virtual network of talent internally with the organization and building relationships that will last through their entire career we hope.â€Â
A spokesman for Boeing said the company has hosted virtual airplane tours and other computer-based events for its interns.
Most engineering interns at defense contractors find themselves being employed at those companies. Approximately 60 percent of interns at General Dynamicsâ€™ mission systems business, for instance, become full-time personnel.