Going to a virtual career fair is a fantastic opportunity to find new career possibilities. At these virtual events, you can meet recruiters and even land a job interview. Compared to traditional in-person job fairs with a few local employers, virtual job fairs allow you to meet many companies that interest you. Other benefits include saving time on traveling and setting up the job fair.
If you have been to an in-person job fair, navigating an online job fair is similar. With some prior technical checks and practice, you can easily handle a virtual career fair.
1. Update Your Resume and LinkedIn
Ensure your resume and LinkedIn profile are up-to-date in case a potential employer asks for them. Your LinkedIn profile is essential for networking because other job seekers may want to connect with other like-minded professionals after the event.
Ensure your profile features your most recent headshot, work experience, and contact information.
2. Research Companies Ahead of Time
Virtual career fairs often list companies in attendance on their websites and emails. Take time to research companies that interest you. Find out more about their missions, products, and news through their social media accounts and websites.
Consider whether you are a good fit for a company by checking their available jobs and matching their criteria to your skills and experiences. You can put together a checklist to prioritize which companies to speak with first, alongside the information you find about them.
3. Practice Your Elevator Pitch
Write an elevator pitch to demonstrate your recent work experience, career goals, and the reasons you’re looking for a new position. Practice introducing yourself to a hiring manager by roleplaying with a friend.
Ask for their feedback on the tone of your voice, body language, and eye contact. While you don’t want to sound rehearsed, knowing the key points of your pitch can help you sound confident when you speak with recruiters.
4. Check Your Technology
Choose a desktop computer or a laptop where you’ll log into the career fair. Test your device’s webcam, microphone, and speakers to ensure you know how to use them.
If you know the video chat platform, you’ll be using for the event, such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams, practice conducting a video chat with a friend or family member first. If the event uses another video call platform, try downloading a free demo on its website to test it out for yourself.
5. Find a Quiet Environment
Try to keep your environment distraction-free, so you have no interruptions. You can tell your family not to interrupt you unless it’s an emergency. Ask them to watch your pets and young children to help keep the noise down. Put your smartphone on silent or turn it off completely.
Stay calm and polite even if you have a few distractions, such as your dog barking or your screen freezing in the middle of a video call. Your reaction can give hiring managers an idea of how you handle stress and unexpected challenges.
6. Make a Good First Impression
Dressing in business casual clothes can create a positive first impression with hiring managers. Wearing your best outfit can also improve your confidence, bettering your chances of success.
Your body language is just as important as your physical appearance. Maintain eye contact, sit up straight, and nod and smile when it comes naturally to you. Doing these things lets recruiters know you are engaged in the conversation.
7. Follow Up With Recruiters
At virtual job fairs, recruiters meet a lot of job seekers, so the best way to stand out is to ask how to connect with them after the event. They may prefer that you contact them through email or a LinkedIn connection request. Message them within 24 hours of the event, telling them who you are and thanking them for speaking with you about the available jobs at their company.
8. Apply to Open Jobs
Submit your applications for open positions with the companies you met at the fair. If possible, send a message to the hiring manager directly. You can tell them how much you enjoyed your meeting and that you have applied for their job online. Include your resume and cover letter in your email so they can read it at their convenience.
Virtual Job Fairs Are an Important Part of Your Job Search
A virtual career fair is a great way to network with companies and professionals. You can also use JobsFuel’s job search resources to help you prepare for the fair. Find more advice on interesting career fields, interview preparation, and look for jobs online.