Job Fairs provide a convenient, one-stop opportunity for you to find your next position. Whether participating in an event with multiple employers or an event for a single company, preparation is vital to ensuring success. There will be plenty of job seekers vying for the same position, so you need to shine in order to get an interview.
There is more to a Job Fair than lazily strolling around a room full of tables, placards, and recruiters. Without a solid plan, you may find yourself left out in the cold and exhausted without accomplishing anything. Good prep work will get you further along in your journey to being hired.
Tips to Make the Most of Your Next Job Fair
Utilize these tips to make your next Job Fair the best experience, and land your dream position:
- Create a Strategy: According to Benjamin Franklin, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” Create a plan for the event. Look at the companies that will be in attendance. You may only get to meet a handful; who will they be? Make a list of at least five to maybe a dozen, and then prioritize what tables you want to stop at. Once you speak to everyone on your list, you can visit the other employers that looked appealing.
- Research Companies in Advance: Research the companies that will be attending. What is their mission statement? Learn a little about their history and current openings. Check the company’s website and social media pages to get a feel for who they are and what they stand for. Knowing more about each one gives you leverage when you talk with recruiters and may help leave a favorable impression. Apply online for positions that stand out to you and let the employers know you already submitted an application and wanted to stop by to introduce yourself and ideally schedule an interview.
- Prepare a 60-second Elevator Speech: Job Fairs can be a busy place as candidates scurry from one table to another. You will not have a lot of time, so developing an elevator pitch can increase your chances of being noticed. This is a quick pitch to explain who you are, your skills, and your career goals. It helps if you can tie your pitch into each company’s mission.
- Polish Your Resume: Take some time to tweak your resume and make sure it is perfect. Utilizing the company research you conducted, tailor a resume to those companies you are most interested in. You can include a cover letter if you want to highlight why you would be a fit for a specific company.
- Dress to Impress: Think of a Job Fair as a preliminary interview. No one will ever frown on you wearing a business suit but they may be turned off if you show up in workout clothes, ripped jeans, or flip flops. Business casual attire is also appropriate. You want to look like you planned to be there. Being polished and professional will help you impress. Don’t forget to practice your firm handshake when you introduce yourself.
- Follow Up: While visiting each table, request a business card from the recruiter. Then use that information to connect on LinkedIn and/or to send a thank you note to reiterate your interest. A handwritten thank you note goes far in helping you stand out from other candidates.
Employers attend job fairs because they want to meet you. They want to learn about you, what you are looking for in your next opportunity, and why they should consider you for their company. They are also there to answer any questions you have about their company, so be prepared. The goal of job fairs is to connect job seekers with employers. Whether the employer has an opening now or in the future, you want them to remember you for that opportunity and know how to contact you. This can be the start of building connections that may lead to your next employment opportunity.
If you want to make a compelling difference in the lives of others, are enthusiastic about life-long learning, and are seeking employment where your strengths will be valued, then please learn more about Wesley Enhanced Living’s career opportunities.