Attending job fairs is a fast way of finding employment. You get to meet and talk to potential employers, give out resumes to more companies instead of spending time calling companies and surfing the net for possible job openings.
Make the most out of attending these job fairs. Here are some tips on how to go about it.
Before attending a job fair, prepare yourself.
- Check out job fair advertisements in newspapers. Get the list of participating companies. Visit the companies you want to contact first.
- Do some background research on the companies you have selected. It will help you to know what the company is all about, their current projects, their future plans if they give you an interview.
- Update your resume. Print them on good quality paper. Keep them clean and crisp. Make several copies to pass around, depending on the number of your target employers plus some extra. Add your business card if you have one.
- Practice your introduction. You should highlight your strong points, your goals and the reason why you want to join the company. Add some of the information you have gathered and incorporate that in your reason/s to join.
- Think of some possible questions an employer might ask you. Develop answers to these questions. Think also of some questions you would like to ask the employer to show your interest. This also shows them that you have done your homework.
Be prepared to make a good impression during the job fair.
- Dress properly in comfortable business attire. Do not wear tight and ill-fitting clothes. Limit your accessories. Do not wear flashy and glittering jewelry. Wear clean and comfortable formal shoes.
- Register early. Walk around and get to know the layout of the whole convention area. Note down the location of your target companies and map them in the order of priority. Do not limit your choices. Check out other companies for future reference. Take the initiative and do some networking. Shake hands and introduce yourself. Listen to what the recruiters have to say. Note down the various job opportunities. Collect company brochures and business cards from each booth that you visit. Show enthusiasm as you go around. Talk to other job applicants. They can provide you with some insights and experiences they may have about some employers.
- Approach the employer’s table. Do this alone. Avoid distraction by bringing someone with you. Hand in your resume.
- Shake the recruiter’s hand firmly. Smile and maintain good eye contact. Address the recruiter properly. Take note of their name from their nametag or company ID.
- Impress him with your knowledge about the company. Make your introduction just like how you have practiced.
- Memorize what you have written in your resume. Be prepared to elaborate on some of the information you have in it. Show willingness to talk about yourself when asked.
- Be considerate during your talk with recruiters. These hiring managers want to talk to as many potential applicants as possible. Do not monopolize them. Learn to look for signs to indicate that you have stayed too long.
- Show enthusiasm when responding to their questions.
- Be polite to everyone. Thank them properly when your talk is over.
A job fair is not the place for formal interviews. It is a venue to make good impressions on possible employers. How well you prepare for a job fair is what counts. You also gain valuable information on what is out there and increase your networking circle.