Job fairs may seem a bit passé in today’s world, but they’re far from dead and they’re definitely not useless. They can be a valuable opportunity to stand out in person and interact with employers in a way you simply cannot do when you apply for a job online. This face-to-face dialogue is critical to your job search strategy. Many employers place a great deal of stock in it because they only want to hire people who will make a good impression on their clients and customers.
Reasons to Attend
In addition to making that critical positive first impression, there are numerous advantages to attending job and career fairs.
- Learn more about prospective employers. For instance, meet people and ask them questions to get a better idea what it’s like to work for an organization. Prepare those questions in advance and be sure not to ask anything that you could learn from the company’s website, which you should have read ahead of time. You may want to ask what kind of person is being sought for a particular position, which specific skills are required, and what a person likes best about working there. Employers want candidates who are proactive, thoughtful and can listen well.
- Show what you know. Demonstrate that you’ve done your homework and researched organizations in advance of meeting with them. For instance, you might note that “I read about Project ABC on your website. Is your department involved in it?” They’ll be impressed that you took the initiative to learn about their mission, vision, purpose and clientele.
With a few simple steps, you can be well prepared to have the “wow” factor needed so that employers remember your visit to their job fair booth in a positive light.
- Have copies of your resume ready. Even if you’ve already submitted it online, an employer may want to glance at a hard copy of your resume as they speak with you. If you’re looking for more than one type of position, have versions of your resume tailored to each one. At the same time, don’t be surprised if some employers refuse to accept resumes. This is done to comply with federal regulations regarding the way they maintain and manage data.
- Dress for success. Employers notice every detail. Dress neatly, conservatively and professionally. Do a final check for wrinkles, scuffs or spinach from lunch in your teeth.
- Have a plan for the day. Make “A” and “B” lists of employers you most want to visit. You may not have time to see them all so you need to know which ones are your priority based on your skills and interests.
- Prepare a 20 to 30-second introduction. You don’t want to sound like you’ve memorized a script, but you do want to sound like you’ve thought about why you’re there. For instance, “Hello, I’m Jane Doe. I’m interested in the public relations opportunities available at (name of company). I’ve been in the field for about four years and I’m exploring options for my next career step.”
Above all, be flexible and open to opportunities that may arise – and incorporate job fairs as one of the key tactics in your career search toolbox. For additional strategic resources, contact the recruitment professionals at PrideStaff Modesto today.
Was this Article Helpful? Consider Sharing it on Social Media: