Job fairs are a wonderful way to meet potential employers. They offer an opportunity to explore and network. Job fairs brings you face to face with companies ready to hire people. A job seeker will improve their chances for success by preparing before the job fair, by being active during the career fair, and by following up after the fair is over. These steps can help your job search be more successful.
Before the Job Fair
Make sure you know how to get to the job fair. Plan your route ahead of time. You want to arrive to the job fair in ample time to visit multiple employers and have a chance to talk with them. You don’t want to come in rushing, worried about finding the place, and being frazzled. You want to shine and put the best you forward.
Employmentguide.com suggests finding “out what businesses will be there.” This is great advice because it will allow you to plan. You can select companies you are really interested in, you can select companies you want to learn more about, and you can weed some companies out. It also gives you a chance to study up on the companies so you are more prepared to talk more intelligently with them.
Your resume should always be ready. However, before the fair you want to proofread it and make sure there are no typos and your contact information is up to date. You also want to make plenty of copies of your resume on quality resume paper.
At the Job Fair
It is show time. Employmentguide.com states “business casual is usually the most appropriate at a job fair” which makes sense. However, it does depend on the job fair. If the job fair information states to dress up, wear a suit. If your research finds the companies are formal, wear a suit. Remember it is better to be overdressed than underdressed. Don’t go to casual. Wear good shoes. I wrote an article with good advice on shoes for interviews this would help at a job fair too. This is your chance to talk to the employers take advantage of it. Remember your research and make the most of it. Remember to keep eye contact, to smile, and to use a firm handshake. This is your first impression, show your stuff, and show you are interested, so you can get the next interview.
After the Job Fair
Don’t wait for them to call you. Be proactive and send a thank you note. Employmentguide.com states sending a card “will let the representative know you paid attention, are serious about the job, and that you are the right person for it.” It will also separate you as someone who is polite.