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How to Make the Most of a Job Fair

how to make the most of a job fair Young graduates and students aren't the only ones who need to know how to make the most of a job fair. More people are using job fairs to network with other professionals to get hired. While they may seem more casual than a standard interview, it is important that you remain professional during these interactions.

A Job Fair Can Help You Get Hired

It is imperative to note that these events typically attract employers from companies who are looking for full-time, entry-level candidates. That is why these types of events are so popular at places like college campuses. However, you don't always have to be a college student to go to these fairs.

You start this process by registering for the event. You should include your personal information as well as a copy of your resume as you begin to apply at these events. Each person will get a different experience from attending one of these events. However, the overall goal for each person is to not only network with professionals but to gain a job position when everything is said and done.

Career Help Center

Simple Methods to Succeed at a Job Fair

  • How to Prepare
    You can't show up with no preparation. You should bring certain documents with you as well as practice statements and interactions before meeting the representatives.

    When you step into this event, you should have multiple copies of your resume. Bring two per company representative whom you are planning to speak. As well as copies of the rest of your professional portfolio. You should also dress appropriately and have a briefcase or professional messenger bag with you to hold all of your papers.

    Before the event, you should take some time to research the companies that will be in attendance. Determine which of them you would like to spend the majority of your time. When you know about the companies ahead of time, you may have an advantage when speaking with the representatives.

    Finally, to be prepared, you should rehearse some statements that you could say to describe your achievements and accolades with the intent to appear more valuable. While you cannot rehearse small talk and other chitchats, preparation is best when you have to speak about yourself.
  • Check Out the Venue
    When you arrive, take a walk around the venue to find the location of everything. That way, you will know the order and direction you should move so that you may speak with the most valued companies first and spend the most amount of time with them.

    Take some time to make a good first impression. When you walk around smile and make eye contact with the people at tables and act interested in every company. Be conscious of your body language and mannerisms.
  • Talk to Recruiters
    When you approach a table, do not immediately stand in line waiting to speak with the recruiter. Instead, come to the company's table from the side, pick up the literature and read it over briefly, while taking an interest in what the company has to offer. Then, you may approach the representative.

    Treat each meeting as a mini-interview. Ask relevant questions as you listen to the responsibilities and expectations of each position. If you are interested in a company that is not currently offering a position for your field, you can still speak with that representative about finding a place for you there.

    Make sure you ask for their business card and other information so that after the job fair has finished, you may contact them for more information and a follow-up.
  • Wrap Up the Day
    After you have spent the day speaking with various employers, you should go back to them before you leave. Shake their hands and thank them again for speaking with you. This courtesy will make you a presence in their mind and make it clear to them that you are interested in their company. Remember that the employers make no offers here, the offers come when you follow up with the company.
  • When You Get Home
    Later after you get home call or email the representative's office to follow up and thank them for their time. If there was any information that you forgot to mention you can take the time to tell them about the value you will bring to their company. Forgetting to thank a representative is a big mistake, and is key to a successful interview.
Making the most of your next job fair can be a tricky road to travel. However, with the proper preparation and networking skills, you can find success from these events. If you are searching for an entry-level position or you would like to develop more networking contacts, job fairs are the perfect outlet for you.

You may want to use our Free Resume Creator to create or update your resume. Before you write it avoid these 10 resume mistakes for this important event.