Recruiting for Early Careers at HashiCorp

The second year of HashiCorp’s Early Career Program includes some 70 interns. The Early Career recruiting team shares details and offers tips for prospective candidates.

HashiCorp announced the launch of its Early Career Program in September of 2020, and the first cohort of 29 interns joined the company in the summer of 2021. (Here’s how the initial program went.)

For the 2022 Early Career Program, we received more than 19,000 applications, and there are currently 70 students in internship roles at HashiCorp. As a remote-oriented company, HashiCorp has employees located all over the world. This year’s intern cohort has students from 21 different states and Canada. Most interns are fully remote except for those based in HashiCorp’s office in Austin, Texas.

»What the HashiCorp Early Career Program Offers Interns

Internships can play a major role in a student's development before they start their full-time career. “It’s the bridge from school to work”, explains Anne Schettig, the Manager of Recruiting for Early Careers at HashiCorp. Interns get the chance to face the kind of real-world problems and challenges that they have only studied in college courses.

HashiCorp’s Early Career Program provides direct exposure to an intern’s chosen field, from marketing or design to engineering or DevOps. HashiCorp Recruiting Coordinator Jae Moore says that interns can get the opportunity to discover different career paths, develop professional skills, and find out which work environments are best for them before they take on their first full-time jobs.

For HashiCorp, the internship program helps managers get to know and help develop students who might potentially join their teams full-time. Before accepting an intern, HashiCorp recruiters make sure the department they’ll be working in has openings for successful interns who receive return offers. With all of our program offerings, 81.25% of the 2021 cohort accepted offers to join HashiCorp full-time after graduation.

»What Makes a Good HashiCorp Early Career Candidate?

As the first line of contact for the program, HashiCorp Sourcer Jacquelyn Quezada makes sure that candidates are students with the potential to convert to full-time. She ensures that their college experience aligns with the program and looks for students who are involved in appropriate extracurriculars.

Contrary to what many students may think, our recruiters do not expect applicants to know everything about the role they hope to fill. In fact, we look for students with room to develop skills in their field. For example, Anne Schettig likes to work with students who have not yet had a chance to intern for a larger company. She looks for coachable students who are eager to seek feedback, who have taken relevant coursework, and engaged with their community outside of school and work.

»Tips for Internship Applicants

Recruitment for the program runs from September through mid-December — most candidates receive a decision before the end of the calendar year. Be prepared, recruiters can tell when candidates have done their research. HashiCorp Early Career Recruiter Lili Llamas says candidates should “try to understand something about the role or the company before interviews”. That doesn’t mean they have to explain the function of every HashiCorp product, but learning about the company’s values and principles can give candidates who came prepared a major advantage.

Schettig suggests paying special attention to writing a good cover letter, even if they’re optional. Cover letters are a great opportunity for candidates to highlight their skills, passions, and interests beyond what is covered in their resumes. Her advice is to “be your own biggest advocate” when reflecting on your experiences and passions. Giving recruiters a full understanding of your experience and goals can give you a better chance of progressing through the hiring process.

In addition, be sure to stay in contact with the recruiters throughout the application process. Communicating with a hiring team can range from asking simple questions to sharing helpful information such as a portfolio or professional references. Reaching out to recruiters also helps candidates stay connected and grow their professional network.

Finally, many young interns neglect professional social networking sites like LinkedIn, which are specifically designed to help users find jobs, learn about companies, develop professional networks, and stay connected with recruiters and colleagues. LinkedIn is also a great way to find university alumni who work for companies you’re interested in.

»What’s New with HashiCorp’s Early Career Program?

In only its second year, the HashiCorp Early Career Program continues to expand. This year’s interns designed the program’s official logo — even before internships began, incoming interns met to brainstorm ideas and begin work on the design. After receiving approval from the HashiCorp design department and recruiters, every intern will receive swag adorned with the graphic they helped to design.

HashiCorp’s Early Career Program can help interns gain experience and develop their professional skills and marketability. Looking ahead to future cohorts, our recruiters hope to increase HashiCorp’s brand awareness and reach new schools to further diversify the pool of Early Career candidates. Increasing the percentage of interns who return to the company as full-time employees is another goal. The next step? Going global to find young talent from all over the world.

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