Recruitment events such as career fairs, recruitment talks and networking sessions connect you with prospective employers. Whether you are attending a virtual career fair, an online networking session or an in-person recruitment talk or career fair, be sure to make the right impression to stand out in the selection process. The same do’s and don’ts apply to both physical and virtual interactions with potential employers.
NAVIGATING VIRTUAL JOB FAIRS AND NETWORKING SESSIONS
Decide Who to Engage With
Before the virtual event – be it a career fair, company talk or networking session, find out which companies will be there and decide who you wish to engage with. Prepare meaningful questions to ask the speakers and recruiters. For instance, ask about the company culture, training opportunities, career progression, the skills and competencies required for the position that you are interested in. Be on your best virtual behaviour when presenting yourself to company representatives.
Fill in your Profile and Prepare Resumes
Submit a comprehensive personal profile for virtual career fairs. State your skills and experiences clearly for potential employers to get a better idea of who you are. Maintain one generic resume in your personal profile upon signing up, and send customised resumes for different job applications.
Interact with Company Representatives
At virtual career fairs, companies may be able to see who have visited their booths. Chat with company representatives by text or use the audio and video functions if you are in a quiet room and are dressed suitably in professional attire. The same goes for attending online company talks and networking sessions.
At a virtual career fair, prepare your self-introduction speech and be ready to talk about your skills and career interests. This allows potential employers to know how you can contribute to the role and company. At the end of each interaction, thank the company representatives and ask how you can follow up.
Ask Questions over an Online Chat or Email
Have your questions ready for employers when interacting with them online. Ask about the skills and competencies needed for the role that you are keen on, as well as the challenges and opportunities associated with the role or the industry. You can also ask them about potential career paths, training opportunities and the hiring process.
Be Professional in your Applications
During a virtual career fair, only apply for the roles that you are really interested in. Do not click away and apply randomly. Do not be tardy in sending in your applications. It is not wise to wait till the end of the virtual fair to begin working on your applications. Be ready for digital interviews as some company representatives will be shortlisting candidates for interviews even during the virtual career fair.
ATTENDING IN-PERSON RECRUITMENT EVENTS
- Know your career interests and career directions before choosing which recruitment events to attend.
- Read up and find out more about the participating organisations and what positions are being offered.
- Prepare and rehearse answers to common interview questions.
- Do some research on industry trends so that you can ask meaningful questions.
- Strategise and plan your route with a list of “must-visit” and “hope to visit” organisations.
- Prepare an engaging elevator pitch to introduce yourself. Be ready to tweak it to be relevant to each organisation.
- Prepare a list of questions so that you can ask about the company culture, training opportunities, career paths, hiring process, and skills and competencies required for the positions that you are interested in.
- Dress professionally and wear comfortable shoes.
- Bring along copies of your resume and prepare your LinkedIn QR code to share with recruiters.
- Keep to yourself. Instead, make use of recruitment events to find out more about the organisations.
- Appear ignorant by asking basic questions about a company.
- Ask what companies can offer you. Instead, ask how you can add value to the organisation.
- Be in casual or uncomfortable attire and shoes.
- Expect employers to shortlist you for an interview on the day itself. Instead, offer your contact details for any necessary follow-up.
- Dismiss any company too quickly. Most organisations have a wide range of roles that could match what you are looking for.
- Ask personal questions that are irrelevant to the job or industry.
- Display unprofessional or negative behaviour.