Employer of Record Intern Project Helps Local Youth

Last updated Oct 26, 2023  |  Published on Sep 18, 2019
by Anna Bielawski

Mobile, a port city in southern Alabama, is home to more than 192,000 residents. The largest municipality along the Gulf Shore, Mobile is known for its French origins, deep Civil War history, and rich culture.

Mobile, AL Reduces Crime, Increases Youth Engagement with Employer of Record Intern Program

Through Knowledge Services’ Employer of Record services and expertise, The City of Mobile was able to drastically reduce youth-related violent crimes, provide valuable work experience for their young citizens, and backfill the City’s seasonal personnel needs.

The Challenge: Daunting Employee Management Burden Could Steal Focus from Program Goals

Without school to attend or enough extracurricular opportunities to keep youth engaged in the summer months, Mobile, AL city officials began noticing an uptick in youth-related crime. In response, the City’s mayor, Sandy Stimpson, surveyed the city’s teens and young adults to discover a desire for more opportunities to work and be involved in the community. From there, the Youth Empowered for Success (YES) internship program was created, offering hundreds of jobs to youth in the Mobile and Gulf Shores areas. YES aimed to not only decrease summer crime, but also give young people more opportunities to learn about sustaining employment, managing their time, and working with others.

“We tell our youth that violence is not the answer,” said Sandy Stimpson, mayor of Mobile, AL. “Now it’s time to consistently provide them with opportunities to be successful.”

But processing, onboarding, timekeeping, and paying the interns would create a daunting amount of administrative tasks, forcing City officials to shift their focus away from the greater initiatives of the program.

The City turned to Knowledge Services for their extensive Employer of Record (EOR) expertise.

The Solution: Employer of Record Intern Tools Streamline the Management Process

Knowledge Services took on many of the program’s administrative tasks for the 2017 program, handling a number of critical and time-consuming processes including:

  • Intern onboarding
  • Time tracking
  • Payroll
  • Taxes and Insurance

With a third party organization to act as the employer, program leaders could focus their efforts on the success of the program while also avoiding any coemployment risk for the City.

“Knowledge Services simplified the administrative tasks so we could focus on the program execution,” said Don Rose, Chief Procurement Officer for Mobile. “The Knowledge Services time entry process gave our youth a realistic picture of working with a job services or offsite payroll vendor to aid in their overall work experience.”

The Results: Mobile Decreases Crime and Employs 250

In its first year, the YES program achieved phenomenal response and success. With the help of Knowledge Services’ Employer of Record intern tools and third party system, Mobile was able to:

  • Efficiently hire 250 summer interns between Mobile and Gulf Shores
  • Eliminate payrolling and employer-related administrative burdens for 80+ City department interns
  • Play a vital part in the City’s drastic decline of youth-related violent deaths
  • Helped the City fulfill its seasonal employment needs across 17 City departments
  • Provide their local youth community with real-world hiring, timekeeping, onboarding, and work experience

“[The internship] allowed me to see what a real-world job is like,” said seventeen-year-old intern Jazminn Coale. “It’s taught me how to be more timely and responsible.”

By partnering with Knowledge Services, the City of Mobile knew that their program’s administrative processes would run smoothly so they could focus on what’s most important: giving young citizens more opportunities to thrive.