The internet has made many of us focus purely on job sites when it comes to looking for work. We even go as far as looking on social networks for work these days, and that’s great, but there are some traditional forms of job searching that should not be forgotten – and job fairs are one of them.
Job fairs if you are new to the idea is like attending an exhibition of recruiters, where you get to find out more about companies and the types of vacancies they have. They are usually argetted to a particular sector, e.g. finance, and are a great way to find out a bit more about what your potential employer is looking for, and what they expect to see on job applications, how to bridge any gaps in qualifications, skills and experience etc.
Here are some of the things that a job seeker must have by the time he or she is at the job fair in order to make the most out of it:
1. Do your research
It’s important to do some research before going to a job fair. Find ut who will be at the job fair, do some research into the companies you are interested in working for, and look at their vacancy list so you can discuss this with them at the job fair.
When you look at the job vacancy list, make sure you look at the job description and the job specification, and highlight any areas that you have questions about. This is what you need to ask at the job fair to show an interest, and so you can make sure you get things right on your job application.
2. Remember to bring enough CVs
How many CVs are enough – it depends on how big the job fair is (i.e. how many employers are exhibiting), and how many you are targetting. Bring at least 25 to be on the safe side, but make sure that you have a mix of general CVs, and more targetted CVs for specific job roles, just in case.
3. Dress like you are going for a job interview
If you can’t make an effort in your appearance to attend a job fair, then what does that say about you, and how seriously you take your work?
There is a good chance that you will meet someone who will be on the interview panel at the job fair, should you be shortlisted for an interview, so you want to make a good first impression. And there is a chance that some employers will be doing interviews at the job fair – wearing jeans and looking the worse for wear will not do you justice.
4. Be prepared for some on-the-spot interviews
Go to job fairs armed with questions, responses and be prepared for on-the-spot interviews. Some employers will use job fairs to maximise on their time and investment (they would have paid quite a lot of money to exhibit at the job fair, so it makes sense for them to interview there).
This is why it’s important that you do your research into the companies exhibiting who you would like to work for before going to a job fair – it will make you stand out from the rest.