It was only a few months ago that virtual job fairs were a voluntary option for job-seekers with many still opting for the face to face option. The process would normally work where you would venture onto a careers directory, college or university website or hear from one employment based organisation or another that there was a job fair that you could attend.
If you were prepared you would review your CV and print off a few copies in the event that you had to complete an application form on the spot or produce a physical copy to hand to a potential employer.
Once you attended the job fair, you would make your way around the multitude of stalls around the room and the process would take from 2-3 hours to up to 1/2 a day. However, with the world's current climate, virtual job fairs are fast becoming a mandatory option with more and more organisations choosing to pursue this avenue to recruit new employees and many are considering using this form of recruitment over public facing options in the near future.
As a result of this, it is imperative that you give yourself a head-start and equip yourself with the necessary knowledge to help you win in the first instance.
Virtual job fairs allow you to hunt for opportunities without leaving the comfort of your own home, but you may need to update your approach. Read and apply these tips before you attend your next virtual event.
Steps to Take Before a Virtual Job Fair
1. Plan Ahead
Virtual job fairs can be more convenient, yet more challenging, than the traditional format. The ease of participation means more events, recruiters, and information. Establish priorities so you know where to concentrate your efforts. Conduct thorough research as to what employers will be present and make sure you have the information you need to hand to present where necessary.
2. Edit Your Profiles
Does your LinkedIn summary need tweaking? If you’re making your Twitter account public, ensure your comments are suitable for the office. Many office workers have been fired for the content of their tweets and over posts shared on social media. Take the time to review your content feed, consider re-writing aspects of your Linkedin that need to be sharpened. In this instance, first impressions of your profile are vital.
3. Create a Basic Website
Go a step further to showcase your talents and samples of your work. Even a basic website or blog gives you a venue to write about your industry and show that you’re keeping up with the latest news. This is particularly useful if you are in the creative industry. If you are not up to creating an entire site, consider creating a Linktree where you link all your professional job profiles and social media platforms in one place.
4. Take a Head shot
Pictures make a strong impression. Depending on your budget, visit a professional photographer or ask a talented friend for help. Failing that, if you have access to a plain white wall and have a smartphone, put on smart work attire and take a few shots to upload on your job seeking platforms. It will make a world of difference.
5. Test Your Equipment
At a minimum, you’ll need a reliable internet connection. It’s also a good idea to try out your webcam and microphone in advance. It has been common for employers to also screen/interview clients via webcam. To be even more prepared, downloads Zoom or Skype in case their want to invite you for a face-to-face meeting through these platforms.
6. Review Your Materials
If you’ve been looking for a new position, you’ve probably already researched keywords for your resume and proofread it at least once. Now that you’re sharing your documents online, you’ll also want to check that they can be viewed correctly on mobile devices.
7. Work On Your Introduction
Some fairs will offer video chats while others will support text messages only. Rehearse your elevator pitch for both formats. Keep all your job related activity in one book and refer to it when having to make your formal introduction.
8. Prepare For Interviews
One of the reasons employers like online career fairs is that they speed up the hiring process. You may be invited for an impromptu video interview so clean up your work space and wear a suit. Virtual Job Fairs are fast becoming the key way that employers hire new staff. If you are currently job seeking, preparation is key and the more organised you are the greater returns you will receive.
Look out for part two of this where we share what steps you need to take at the Virtual Job fair.
W | @Women_Who_Slay