Job fairs are hands-down the best way to get your name, face, and resume in front of a recruiter. Virtual fairs, in particular, are a great way to customize your fair experience to make sure both you and the recruiters get the most out of it. Companies love virtual fairs and are more likely to hire from them rather than from job-listing sites because they’re an easy way to get them directly in front of worthy applicants for student recruitment without having to hold a formal interview.
Simply showing up to a Virtual Fair won’t get you the graduate job you’ve got your eye on, though, and while job offers do sometimes happen on the spot, your most important goal should be networking.
We get it. Networking is that thing people tell you to do, yet no one ever knows how to actually do it, but don’t worry. We’ve got a few tips that will help recruiters remember you, and make sure you end up at the top of their contact list.
This isn’t an opportunity to go on a tirade about how awesome you are but be confident in what you can bring to the table. Know the company’s mission and values and use them to explain why you’re a good fit for them. Sitting in front of a recruiter isn’t your chance to read off your resume, and most likely, not everything on it will apply to the job. Pick a few interesting projects or classes you’ve had and explain what valuable experiences you’ve taken from them.
Show interest in the company and the recruiter.
A pressed suit isn’t the only key to a good impression. Come prepared with a smile and already briefed on who the company is and what they do. Don’t be the person asking the recruiter questions about the company, which shows you haven’t done your research. Instead, prepare interesting and memorable questions about their core values and what it’s like to work for them. The more interesting the question, the more interesting you are as an applicant.
Don’t just talk to one recruiter.
It can be tempting to visit only the virtual booth of the company you’re interested in, but this will limit your possible job opportunities in the future. Instead, network with as many relevant recruiters as possible, even if the job you want isn’t the one that they’re advertising. You never know when a spot will open up and, if you make a great impression, your resume will be at the top of the stack.
Follow up with the recruiter.
Following up is the best thing you can do to increase your chances of getting hired. Typically, in virtual fairs, recruiters hear a lot of names and see a lot of faces, and it’s your job to make sure they remember yours. Whether this is by e-mail or LinkedIn, send each recruiter you spoke with a message within forty-eight hours of the fair. Let them know something memorable about you or your conversation and let them know you enjoyed talking with them. Remind them what job you’re interested in and don’t forget to thank them for their time. They’ll likely match your name with your resume and reconnect with you during the hiring process.
Remember: putting yourself in front of recruiters and making a great impression is the best way to grow your contact list. A bigger network means more chances for you to land your dream job, but it’s up to you to make sure they know you exist. So, put yourself out there and meet like-minded people in your industry. Remember this and eventually, they’ll remember you.