How to Prepare for a Job Fair

It pays to prepare, as they say, and attending a job fair is no exemption to this timeless rule.

Job fairs are indeed one of the fastest ways to land a job. At these events, recruiters and job hunters come together in one venue to find out if they are a suitable fit for one another. To boost your chances of getting quality job offers at these events, Resumeble advises you to come to the job fair prepared with an effective strategy.

How to prepare for a job fair as an employee

Whether or not you already have a list of companies you want to send your resume to, understand that at job fairs, it’s very possible for you to face stiff competition from better, more qualified candidates. If you want to stand out, you need to know how to market your personal brand and distinguish yourself from the rest of the applicants. Here are seven great tips on how to prepare for a job fair.

how to prepare for a job fair

1. Research the event beforehand

Know all the necessary info to attend the job fair including the date, location, hours, companies attending, and any personal documentation you may need to bring with you. When you have a list of the companies, find out which ones will be conducting interviews at the event. Some of the most common interview questions include:

  • What are your greatest strengths/weaknesses?
  • Why do you think you will be a good fit for the job?
  • What do you know about the company?
  • How much do you expect to get paid?

Thorough research will likely let you know the questions that a company asks its applicants during interviews. This will allow you to practice for potential interview questions so you can go into them calmly and confidently.

2. Be professional and presentable

Dress properly in preparation for a possible job interview, as it isn’t uncommon for companies to hire right then and there at job fairs. Dress conservatively, practice good grooming, and keep accessories minimal to convey a professional impression. Navigating job fairs can take some time, so make sure to wear comfy yet classy pair of shoes.

3. Prepare a sales pitch

Get ready with a 30- to 60-second opening statement that explains who you are, what skills define you, and what your goals are as an employee. This statement will serve as your “sales pitch” that summarizes the qualities that make you a valuable potential hire. When making your pitch, identify the skills, talents, and experience that you bring to the table. Revise and rehearse your pitch until you are able to deliver it confidently within a minute or so.

4. Plot out your day

If you plan to try your luck by applying to a handful of companies, it will be helpful to create an itinerary for the day so you’ll have a good idea of how much time you have to spend with each recruiter, hiring manager, or representative. Very few practice this important tip on how to prepare for a job fair, and end up wasting a lot of time. Don’t be like them.

5. Be ready with your own questions

Evaluating an ideal fit works both ways—just as companies will be scrutinizing you, you also need to do your best to find out if the company’s work environment—and its values—are right for you. Some of the topics to ask to relate to their hiring process, growth opportunities, and company culture. Use your questions as an opportunity to learn beyond the job description. Here are some examples:

  • What does someone in the job position do in a typical workday?
  • What do employees say they love most about working for the company?
  • What are the opportunities for growth?
  • Does the job position have a career path in place?
  • Are there programs for employee retention? What are they?

6. Don’t forget to pre-register

Some job fairs require attendees to register beforehand, so make sure to do so. Aside from ensuring access to the job fair event, pre-registering also allows companies to learn about you in advance, so they will be familiar with you and your qualifications, perhaps even allot interview time with you during the event.

7. Bring application materials

Knowing the number of companies you want to apply for will help you determine how many resumes you need to bring with you. Always print more than you plan to send out, as employers tend to ask for more copies from applicants that they’re interested in. It’s also a good idea to have business cards handy, as well as a pen and paper for taking notes during your interviews.

It may also be wise to bring your own snacks in case you have to line up in a queue and don’t want to lose your place in search of refreshments. This is also a great money-saving move. Be sure to check that it’s allowed, though.

Is your resume up to date?

Along with these tips on how to prepare for a job fair, work with Resumeble to bring your resume up to speed. It’s a worthwhile investment to make in your job hunt, as our writers will work with you one-on-one to help your qualifications stand out and increase your chances of landing the job you want. Send us your resume today for a free, no-obligation evaluation.

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