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Working as a "Virtual Intern"

Tethys Engineering provides a rich set of features to allow you to create your own community, very much like most social networks. This said, the essential objective is for you to get invited to work on a project. An initial step in that process would be to get invited to a "private" group created by a participating business in order to develop a relationship. This is where you will need to learn to 

  1. market yourself, 
  2. be active, 
  3. reach out to participants, 
  4. create rich and interesting content on your wall, 
  5. and invest in building your reputation.

It is also expected that students will form "private groups" to organize themselves around topics of interest and specializations that they would want to promote to various businesses. Those same private groups could be formed by a group of students interested at promoting their services to a specific business, either way "Groups" present a powerful mechanism to organize the beginning of a possible internship. 

The ultimate goal though is for the business to hire you. To facilitate that Tethys Engineering allows every participant to list the services (and products) he/she wants to sell. It is setup in your own individual store and offers each participant a simple way to transact with businesses, keep track of it and get paid. The following step-by-step instruction will guide a participant in setting up a store, defining services (or products) and explain the mechanisms by which a business will purchase the services offered.

Once logged in, select "My Tethys/My Offering Dashboard" menu pick, this will take you to a very important place where you can have a summarize view of what you have accomplished financially on Tethys Engineering. The dashboard is also the place where you can create a "store", define you "Products" (in this case mostly services) but it can also give you a summary view of what customers have bought from you and what has been the overall earnings you have accumulated. From here,  create a "store" and then create a "product". Select the "Stores/My Stores" menu pick from the dashboard toolbar at the top of the page to get started. 

Your list of stores should be empty at first hence you need to click on the "New" button to get to the screen shown here on the left. 

As a participant you are allow to create only one store so this process will never have to be repeated. 

The store title should preferably identify you so it will be easier for businesses to pick it from a list. Although the content of you store will be on your profile page, there will be other ways for businesses to get to your store by pickling from a list. 

Your address and contact information is important, perhaps a little redundant with the profile info but this is the information that will be used if we need to send you checks. At his point we required every student to setup a Paypal account and to provide the information for it here as this is the primary form of payment we are using.

Creating an offering is very easy. Select "Product/Add product" from the Offering/store Dashboard. The form that needs to be filled includes the following three categories. The first one is the most essential, the remaining two allows to create more complex offerings. 

The Basic information should be filled in its entirety including the selection of an image to depict the entry in the catalogue. Maintain the size of the image small as it will never be shown in size bigger than 128/128 pixels. 

One critical information is the price for your service. To help you defining the right price, you will find a pricing tool on your My Profile page. This tool will help you to compute a price taking into account the eventual licence costs associated to your offer (e.g. if you are offering Solidworks services)

The attribute information will allow the participants to add features/attributes to a product or services. This will serve its purpose if the customer has special requirements, for example to expedite the work, work evenings and weekends, etc. 

The digital media attributes offer the opportunity to sell end-products to customer captured in various files or documents. Once created, the entry will be reviewed by an administrator to ensure it can be posted on the website.

The most important thing right now is to have customers/businesses interested in what you have to offer and selecting from your "store" the service you can provide. They have two places to do this. The first is the general offerings page that can be accessed via the "My Tethys/Search Offerings" menu pick which essentially gives access to everything that is available across Tethys Engineering. The visitor can navigate by category, by store and review the various offerings listed. The second place is actually on your profile page where your offering will show on the left side of the page below your reputation tabs

We have made a special effort to integrate the store, products and ultimately selling functionality of Tethys Engineering with the profile of the participants. This give another path for businesses/customers to decide who they would like to work with and what services they are expecting The profile page of each participant display on the upper left side the various "reputation" items made available for the customer to decide, and just below that we have provided direct access to the services and products that participants is offering.

​Following those instruction should get you to a stage where you can do business with any participating customer. The key now is obviously to get noticed, to pursue customer opportunities and to be selected for specific projects.

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Wednesday, 24 January 2018
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