Job fairs and seminars are some of the most common events that are attended by freshers who want to have a clear perception of a particular field. Unlike popular perception, they are not as useless as many people claim.
Job fairs provide aspiring job seekers with a perfect opportunity to build networks, create a good impression and learn about organizations and their work culture.
In the modern times where nearly every form of communication happens through phone or email, a job fair allows you to interact directly with the employer. It is thus much better than the other options of the present day. Here are some of the tips that you can use to stand out and be hired at such a fair:
Simple Tips to Ace the Job Fair and Get Hired:
1. Come up with a specific plan for the day:
Be it a job fair or a job interview, focus is of prime importance. You should know clearly what your career objective or goal is. If you have a clear picture, the rest of the pursuit gets much easier. You should know what career you wish to pursue. Try to sort out careers in your field. Aim to impress the recruiters in your field.
Find out the exact employers you would need to connect with, before attending the job fair. However, it is always wise to leave a little bit of time for the so-called ‘’wild cards’’ as stated by leading HR practitioners. Apart from presenting a properly drafted resume, you also need to show your enthusiasm and energy for the job you want to apply for.
2. Keep a track of the companies that will be present there:
It may so happen that you do not get a clear idea what the company is into or what your role will be in the firm. In such instances, do not hesitate to ask questions. Before heading for the job fair, make sure you research about all the firms that are participating in the job fair. Try to find out the field they are in and the kind of openings they have. This will help you get an idea of your job profile if you join the firm or organisation.
The better your know how about the organization and the type of vacancies they have, the better will it be for you. All you need to do is, to go through reviews of the companies that are going to be present at the job fair. Check their websites. If there is a lack of time for you to research on the company, then select a handful of companies that you would like to work with and research on them.
3. Dress in formals like you would do for an interview:
You need to take the job fair seriously. Do not take it as just another event in your vicinity. You need to show the seriousness that you show when you head for a job interview. You need to keep in mind that for you it is just as critical as any job interview. There will be many recruiters in the job fair and they are sure to make an impression based on your appearance and looks.
What you wear to the career job fair is really important. These are big events and attract a lot of people. Therefore, to make a mark and stand out, you will need to be professionally well dressed. If you’re not dressed professionally then it might create a bad impression on employers. Wrinkled or untidy clothes, scuffed shoes or too much of jewelry can put them off.
4. Avoid asking questions whose answers are available online:
Remember that a job fair does not happen every second day. These are rare events where many recruiters participate and you need to make the best of it. If you waste your time trying to gather information that is already available on the Internet, you are actually wasting your time.
Instead, spend enough time researching on the Internet the day before the job fair. This way, you will get all the vital information about the firms and the openings they have. During the job fair, you can stick to just the critical questions.
Questions like ‘’What profiles are you hiring ‘’? or ‘’What is your company into’’? can be easily available on the internet. Instead, you should ask them for details based on what you have learned about them from research. Mention about a new brand or initiative that has been taken by the company.
5. Keep in mind that this a networking opportunity:
The negative impact of social networking has been a change in the networking skills of people. Today, people seem to be poor communicators and do not know how to interact with others if they do not have a gadget in hand. You must work on your networking skills while maintaining a courteous nature. If you know how to interact and build relations, you will come across the right jobs pretty easily.
As a prospective job seeker, you will need to collect as many business cards as you can to create a good impression. So, when you apply for a new position, you can create a lasting impression by referring to that connection in your cover letter or introduction email.
6. Be ready to answer questions about your personal details:
You can never say what to expect from the recruiters and employers during a job fair. In many instances, the recruiters or employers are not mentally prepared to interview a candidate. Yet, that may not always be the case. Some interviewers are always on their toes willing to ask the right questions.
Quite a few employers start the interview with ‘’So tell me something about yourself’’. Start with your name, a brief detail about yourself before stating why you are interested in the specific position in the organization. If you have prior work experience, highlight the core skills related to the job.
7. Listen carefully to people around you:
Listening is an art that freshers need to develop if they wish to get hired. Pay attention to what people say. You never know when you get to hear some significant bit of information that may improve your chances of getting the right job.
If the recruiters provide you with some valuable advice, be kind enough to acknowledge it. The advice they provide may actually increase your chances of landing the right job.
If you are standing in a line to talk with the prospective employer, then listen to what others say and think about suitable answers to the questions the employer is asking.
8. Show your enthusiasm:
A job fair is a very short duration and you can make the best of it only by being expressive. These are instances when your enthusiasm and vigour count a lot. A job fair is not the ideal place to show a casual and laid back approach.
Show your enthusiasm for the event by making a firm smile, making a good eye contact and good conversation with the representative of the organization. You may also volunteer to provide your contact number and details. You can request the recruiters to provide mail id or contact details.
9. Apply online after meeting the company representative:
Very often, recruiters completely forget about the candidates they met during the job fair. You must keep in mind that the need is yours. So you must do the job of reminding the recruiter of your job application. It will be a great idea to apply online on company websites if you wish to join the firm.
Freshers usually have the misconception that if a prospective employer takes your resume at a job fair, they will be regarded as a candidate. Once you focus on a company, you should not just research on the company but also access their careers section and apply online. This will make sure that the employer at the job fair knows that you have already applied online. It will prove to be a major advantage for you.
10. Highlight the achievements of your career:
Greeting an employer courteously and presenting him your resume is not enough. During the interview, you will need to highlight the major accomplishments of your career to stand out from other candidates.
The interviewer is curious to find out why you are the ideal candidate for the firm. You can tell him the same by highlighting your career achievements. Show the recruiters your positive track record and ways in which you are an ideal candidate for the post.
11. Follow-up with email:
Make it a point to follow up with recruiters soon after you come across them at the job fair. Ask them for a business card and send thank you emails. It will show that you have a genuine interest in the profile. If you are a likely candidate, they will surely respond to your mail. Even if you are rejected, the recruiters may help you out with other references that are helpful.