Job Fairs: Some Common Tips to Follow
Attending a job fair can have many benefits. It allows you to broaden your network base from all of the contacts you make during one of these events. According to statistics from The National Job Fair & Training Expo, their average attendance since 2002 totalled just under 10,000 people per event and they welcomed approximately 233,900 visitors during that time. There are many opportunities available at these fairs from jobs, training, career services to entrepreneurship opportunities. So with this in mind, attend one of these job fairs and remember there are some simple tips you can employ to ensure that you make the best out of your job fair experience.
- Arrive Early - Avoid long line-ups by arriving early. This gives you more time to speak with potential employers and recruiters before the long queues begin to form.
- Dress Professionally - Consider wearing traditional professional business attire. Dressing for success shows prospective employers that you are a serious job applicant. Some employers conduct on-the-spot interviews, so you want to make sure that you make a good impression and are prepared.
- Have a Plan - Devise a plan so that you know which employers you want to target. Make a list of all the companies ranking them according to which ones you would like to apply to based on your research of these companies. Employers are impressed when candidates take the time to find out about their organization and the types of positions available in their company. Visit company websites, read about them in newspaper or magazine articles, or search online business databases available from the library. So plan your day around a list of companies that you would like to visit as well as, any seminars or workshops going on.
- Network - Talk to as many people as possible and take the time to collect any pertinent information and literature available at the various booths. This is a good opportunity to connect with many different agencies and organizations and gain some insightful advice.
- Be Polite - Practicing proper business etiquette can involve introducing yourself, making eye contact, smiling, having a firm handshake, being courteous, asking relevant questions, listening before speaking and listening to what employers have to say about their organization. With the high volumes of people, be mindful of other people visiting the booth. Monopolizing an employer's time can be seen as being discourteous and lacking poor judgement.
- Bring Your Resume - Walk with several copies of your resume to hand out to employers. Distribute any business cards if you have any to give out. Also, bring any relevant references just in case recruiting consultants and employers are conducting interviews.
- Practice Your Presentation Skills - Consider coming up with a few talking points that you can elaborate on when speaking with potential employers. Start your day by visiting the booths that you are least interested in. This will give you a chance to practice what you would like to say and gain some confidence in your delivery for when you do meet your list of targeted employers.
- Follow-up - Send an email or thank-you note to key employers or recruitment consultants you met. This is a great opportunity to personalize your cover letter emphasizing your skills and experience and reminding them of your interest in working for their company.
Are you ready to use these tips at some upcoming job fairs?
Get the Facts on Accreditation Requirements & Canadian Culture - Wednesday, October 22, 2014: 9:00 a.m.- 3:30 p.m. - 20 Canadian Road - Ellesmere Community Centre
HackerNest: Toronto Tech Job Fair - Saturday, November 8, 2014 - 1:00- 6:00 p.m. 255 McCaul Street, Toronto, Exam Hall, University of Toronto. Registration is free.
Also, consider reading up on how you can improve on your presentation skills by borrowing these titles from the library.