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How to Work a Job Fair!


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Presentation based largely on a seminar delivered at Tacoma Community College Job Fair on April 18, 2013 by MaryBeth McCarthy, Mic Stump and Kim Myers

Presentation based largely on a seminar delivered at Tacoma Community College Job Fair on April 18, 2013 by MaryBeth McCarthy, Mic Stump and Kim Myers

Published in: Education, Career, Business

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  • 1. How to Work a Job Fair…and make it work for you!
  • 2. Outline1. Why attend a job fair?2. Why do employers attend?3. What to expect4. How to prepare5. Plan of attach6. Follow-up
  • 3. Why Attend a Job Fair??Learn about specific employers & theirapplication processesExplore career options & research areas ofinterestEstablish contact with employers-NetworkPractice your interviewing skillsApply for jobs & internshipsGet free stuff!!
  • 4. Why Do Employers Attend?97% provide job openings &company information to solicitapplicants & maintain visibility84% discuss company benefitsScout for talent, skill & “fit” for theircompanies
  • 5. What to ExpectVary in size and number of employersEmployers stand/sit at tables often withdisplays or boothsCan have a wide range of companies, start-ups, enterprises, staffing agencies, trainingproviders, and career counselorsSome employers might interview on thespot, but most will refer to online application
  • 6. Well-known employers will have linesVery noisy, crowded and warmWhat to Expect
  • 7. BEFORE THE EVENTHow to Work a Job Fair
  • 8. Decide What You WantHave reasonable expectationsDecide what you want to get out of the fair– Learn about specific employers?– Explore career options– Make one-on-one contact with key connections– Research demand for your skills– Practice interview skills in informal setting
  • 9. Preparation and ResearchWhy is this important?Being informed makes you more confidentIf you know about employers at the fair, you canclearly articulate how you are a good fit
  • 10. Researching employers:Type of organization, business or agencyMission statement & core valuesReputationRecent news and articlesNew programs, plans, challenges, etc.Preparation and Research
  • 11. Where Can I Get Info?Company websitesLinkedIn Company PageFacebook/Twitter pagesPuget Sound Business Journal / WSJDun & Bradstreet
  • 12. Before You Go Organize your materialsa. Bring at least 25 resumesb. Have TARGETED resumesc. Do you have business cards?d. Have a notebook to keepresumes, business cards andemployer informatione. Have a list of questions foremployers and take notes!
  • 13. Before You Go Prepare Yourself!a. Have a personal summary readyb. Prepare to interview (just in case!)c. Obtain most current employer list and find relevantjob openings– target your preparations to thoseopeningsd. Know what you’ll weare. Review online applications in advance, note anyquestions on process you may have to askrecruiters
  • 14. DURING THE EVENTHow to Work a Job Fair
  • 15. What to Wear?Dress professionally– Business suits make the best impression– Business Casual is acceptableWear comfortable shoes!Because of crowds, leave backpacks homeBe prepared for weather– you may have topark a ways away
  • 16. Have a StrategyResearch ahead of time if you canHave 4-5 employers targeted to speak toObtain an event map (if available)Prepare for lines– most popular employers willlikely have long linesBe alert to other conversations– you’ll learnsomething!
  • 17. Meeting RecruitersTypical time spent with recruiter is 1-3 minutesGive a brief (30-60 seconds) personal introductionExplain how your background & strengths matchtheir needsOffer your resumeBe sincereBe professional!
  • 18. Your Personal IntroductionName, background, 2-3 skills or strengthsthat match the company’s needsShow passion for what you doHighlight a relevantaccomplishmentHave a question ready to askemployers (remember timeconstraints)
  • 19. Questions to Ask EmployersWho would be an ideal match for this opening?What kind of projects could I expect to work on?Can you tell me about the application process?What can I do in school or in projects to makemyself a better match for your company?What do you like about working for yourcompany?
  • 20. Before Moving OnRequest a business card and ask “Would it bepossible to contact you?”Ask about their preferred method for follow up(e-mail, etc)Shake hands and thank them for coming
  • 21. After Meeting Your TargetEmployersTrack which employers you submitted resumesto– jot down notes from each employer“Shop” other employers’ booths and do somenetworkingIf there are associated workshops orpresentations, plan on attendingRemember that job fairs are just as much aboutnetworking opportunities as they are aboutjobs!
  • 22. AFTER THE EVENTHow to Work a Job Fair
  • 23. After the Job FairIf you did not do research before the Job Fair, doso before submitting your applicationSend a thank you note that affirms your interestSubmit your TARGETED application or resumefollowing company proceduresStay in touch periodically, IE: sending them yourupdated qualificationsEmployers do expect follow-upThe point is to stay Top of Mind–but don’t become a nuisance!