Job fairs can be a useful resource when you’re looking for a new position. Today, job hunting and a majority of the application process is done online, so job fairs offer a valuable opportunity to meet with recruiters and hiring managers face-to-face. Below we’ve compiled some helpful tips to keep in mind the next time you attend a job fair:
- Be prepared –Make sure you come dressed professionally and with plenty of copies of your resume. You should also put together a one-minute “elevator speech” about who are you are, your qualifications, and what type of position you’re interested in.
- Do your research –Obtain a list of participating companies beforehand to identify the companies that you wish to visit. Learn more about each of these businesses and formulate practical questions. Remember that this will be a valuable opportunity to gain first-hand insight and answers from company representatives—something that may be helpful later in an interview.
- Come alone – Many people make the mistake of attending a job fair with their friends and/or families. Remember that the recruiter should have your full attention, free from distractions. This will show that you respect their time and it will help you stay focused.
- Keep an open mind – Don’t be quick to overlook a company if the name or industry does not appear to fit with what you’re looking for. As the saying goes, never judge a book by its cover. If you have time, visit a few companies that are not on your list as you may find unexpected opportunities.
- Follow up – During the fair, keep track of which companies you visit and collect the contact information of the recruiters you speak to. Afterwards, you should follow-up with the contacts you met. Send an email, thank you letter, or make a phone call. Not only will this show your gratitude for their time, it will also keep your name fresh on their mind.