How to Make Cold Calls to Employers

By: Lauren Creamer

Cold calling employers can be an essential method of outreach when seeking co-ops. This is especially true for industries where the Institute does not have strong connections (yet). How does one go about making cold calls, you ask? First, identify companies that are of interest to you, or are in your geographic location. Note key bits on information in a spreadsheet, including the local number (not a 1-800 or 1-888 number). Then, develop a script that fits your needs. Below is an example that can be tailored to fit your situation.

Man on phone

Start…

“Hello – My name is Lauren Creamer, I’m a local university student and I’m calling to inquire if you hire interns?”

 

If they say yes…

“That’s great, are you in need of an intern for this upcoming season? I am looking for spring internships.”

 

                      If they say yes…

“Great. How can I apply for that opportunity?”

 

                      If they say no…

“That’s too bad – in the future, how can I apply for your internships? I will be seeking another in September.” (OR whenever your next co-op is scheduled).

 

If they say no…

“Okay, thanks for your time. Have a nice day!” *hang up*

 

If they don’t know or are not the right person you should speak to…

“Is there someone else I could speak to who might be able to share that information with me?”

 

From here you would continue the conversation in whichever direction they take you. Regardless, you should be prepared to answer the following questions:

    • What kinds of internships are you looking for?
    • What are your school’s requirements? (Check our website for up-to-date co-op deadlines).
    • Does it need to be paid? (The answer is “YES” if you’re calling for-profit employers).
    • Why are you interested in this company?

 

For the most part, employers will react in a neutral or positive manner when you make cold colds. Occasionally you might get a disgruntled person on the line, and in that case, be polite and move on. You don’t want to put your energy into someone (or a company) that isn’t open to your inquiry. You could always try another tactic (like reaching out to specific individuals on LinkedIn).

 

When in doubt, create a plan of action and run it by your CO-OP + CAREER Advisor!

As always, to make an appointment with your CO-OP + CAREER Advisor call the front desk at 617.989.4101 or stop by the CO-OPS + CAREERS Office.