Looking for a new job can be scary, but that is why it is so important to research all of your options and take advantage of each opportunity that comes your way. Job fairs are a great way to get in touch with various employers all at once. Now, can you imagine the pressure of meeting multiple employers in a matter of just a few hours? Sounds scary right? Don’t let it be! Come prepared! Preparing for a job fair is crucial in terms of your personal success at the event. There are a few key factors on how to prepare for a job fair that will guarantee you will leave the event feeling confident in your job search and knowing exactly what your next step should be.
Research Each Company Beforehand
For the most part, each participating company will be listed on the Job Fair website where you originally RSVP’d to attend. Take advantage of this! Take the time to research companies that sound appealing to you, get to know their culture to see if it is a company you would like to work for, and see what job openings are available. In a notebook (that you will bring to the event with you), write down the job openings and a few key statements about the company that will give you talking points when you are face-to-face with the recruiter. This will give you a leg up on your competitors, showing employers that you have come prepared, further proving how determined you are to jump into a new career. Coming prepared with this information will also help you when the recruiter asks the age old question, “What kind of job are you looking for?” Doing your research ahead of time allows you to answer this question with a direct position you saw available on their website and further explain what qualifications you have for said job opening.
Clean Up Your Resume
Do you want to know a secret on how to prepare for a job fair? Let me tell you, get that resume in tip top shape! One of the most important components to a job search is your resume! It is so important to have a nice, clean, to-the-point resume that is going to attract employers. Note that your resume should only be one page long, and your contact email is professional and appropriate (this is crucial). You have to remember that these recruiters are handed resumes all day long and they are drawn to ones that are short and sweet. It should elaborate on your work history, tasks previous employers assigned you, and how those tasks positively influenced the work environment for you and fellow colleagues. Remember to list characteristics that show what an asset you would be to their company. Bring about 15 resumes to hand out; this may seem like a lot but it is always better to have too many than not enough!
Plan Your Outfit the day Before
Now this one may seem silly but it is actually a great way in which you can prepare for a job fair ahead of time. Looking the part is half of the struggle. It is so important to wear something that shows your professionalism. This is not to say you have to wear a 3 piece suit, but it does, however, suggest that you wear something that employers are going to recognize as something appropriate for the workplace. No flip-flops, shorts, or too-revealing clothing. If you want to be taken seriously as a job seeker, looking the part is crucial. Planning your outfit in advance will save you from stressing out the morning of the event and you can spend your time mentally preparing for your interactions with recruiters rather than feeling frazzled searching for the perfect outfit.
Show Up to the Event Early
Punctuality is such an appealing attribute for employers searching for new employees. The typical job fair will last roughly 3 hours; arriving early will help you avoid crowds and allow more time with each recruiter. Pre-registering for the event online will also help you get through the registration line faster. This extra little bit of time is going to allow you to have a decent amount of time with each employer, allowing you to make more personal connections.
How to Prepare for a Job Fair
By utilizing the tips from this article, you are guaranteed to enter into the job fair confident and ready to talk to employers. While making connections with different recruiters, remember that they may not all be offering what you are looking for, but recruiters know OTHER recruiters. Be confident with the type of position you are looking for, showcase what great qualities you have to offer any company, and maybe the recruiter you are talking to will know of someone else looking for someone to fill the position you are in search of. Making a good impression is the most important thing at a job fair. Job fairs allow you to be personable and showcase something that isn’t visible on an 8×11 resume. Preparing yourself for the job fair is going to set you up for success.