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Google opens up surprising new Singapore job – but you don't have long to apply

If you’re still looking to land a banking internship in Singapore this year, you’re probably out of options. Most banks stopped accepting applications for their 2020 internships in September/October – and interviews have largely taken place.

If you want to spend your summer at Google, however, the internship door is suddenly open again. Although Google closed applications for three Singapore internships (two in engineering and the other on the business side) at the end of October, it has now opened up a data centre intern programme in Singapore. The deadline to apply is 31 January and the jobs last for a minimum of 10 to 14 weeks, according to Google’s careers site. Google doesn’t say how many interns it wants.

Unlike many other corporate internships, this one isn’t exclusively for penultimate year students. You can apply if you’re in any year of a BA/BS degree (or higher education diploma) in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, information systems, information technology, information engineering, or a “similar technical area of study”. But Google isn’t only interested in your academics – you’ll need “experience with installing a network or Linux system”, a requirement which may rule out many prospective candidates.

The Google data centre internship in Singapore is a hands-on job. Working in what the company calls a “physically demanding setting”, you’ll be contributing to repairs, upgrades, deployments and cabling within Google’s data centre infrastructure. You’ll also be identifying trends for machine failure, reporting bugs and working with remote teams to resolve them.

While the timing of the hiring process is somewhat surprising (given that Google typically recruits summer interns the previous autumn), the data-centre focus of the internships isn’t. In response to rising customer demand for its cloud services, Google is set to launch a US$350m third data centre in Singapore later this year, built on a plot of land in Jurong West the size of its nearby first and second centres combined. Aside from internships, the company has vacancies for seven full-time data centre roles in Singapore.

These jobs are becoming more highly skilled at Google (and other large tech firms) as menial data-centre tasks have been automated over the past few years. “When something goes wrong and automation can’t account for it, figuring out why has become more of a specialty skill, and we need much higher quality people to do those kinds of corner cases,” Joe Kava, Google’s VP of data centres, said previously.

However, if you want to become a technology professional at Google after you graduate but aren’t keen on a long-term career in a data centre, it may still be worth going for the data centre internship in Singapore. Performing well in any summer role at Google gives you a “crucial advantage” over other graduates when you then apply for a permanent job at the tech firm, says a Singapore-based IT recruiter. Moreover, Google’s own careers site states that the data centre team “offers a great introduction to the wider engineering world at Google”. That’s because alongside the “physical deployment of data centre-related technology”, you’ll also be working closely with “various stakeholders” across other departments.

Photo by Mitchell Luo on Unsplash

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AUTHORSimon Mortlock Content Manager

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