Do Job Fairs Still Work?

Resume Writing

do job fairs still work?
With all kinds of action happening online these days, many job seekers decide that the local job fairs are a waste of time. But, really, attending the local job fairs is one of the most effective things you could do if you do it right. Here’s why:


A job fair is the best chance you have to meet face to face with the people who will evaluate your resume before you submit it. What’s more, you can hand that resume to them and they have a person to remember when they read it. It’s a great opportunity to connect with people who you know are looking for the right candidate to fill a position, because if they didn’t need to hire more people, they wouldn’t be at the job fair. What’s not to like about that?
But you’ll need to treat it as carefully as you would treat an interview:

  • Do your homework and know something about the companies that will be at the job fair
  • Dress as you would for an interview, being well-groomed and professional in appearance
  • Carry a business-like tote or briefcase for all the stuff you’ll collect
  • Carry a folio of resumes printed out to hand to recruiters
  • Attend workshops being offered
  • Be prepared to take notes at workshops and when meeting people so you remember details
  • Relax and enjoy the event

Hand Out Professional Resumes

A professional resume doesn’t have to be one that’s written by a professional, but it should look like it. Using a template for your resume means your resume will look like everybody else’s and why should anybody remember which one is yours? You have more to offer than a cookie-cutter template of a resume, and it is worth the investment to do it.
You can start by looking at the category of Resume Writing on this blog. There are many other resources, too. The thing to remember is that actually handing a well-written resume to a recruiter at a job fair will impress twice–once when you hand it over in person and again when they read it.

Hints For Successful Networking


Hints For Successful Networking
As odd as it may sound, many people keep the fact that they are searching for a new job a secret even when they are unemployed. This is a bad idea simply because you never know who is going to hear about a job opening that would be a perfect fit for you. Still, networking has changed drastically over the past few years. In fact, just 5 years ago this would be an entirely different set of hints. In any case, sending out resumes is just not enough.
Tell your friends and former colleagues that you are looking for a new job
You don’t have to go into detail about why. Just be sure that everyone you know is aware of it. Be sure to mention it on your social media sites as well. The world has gotten a great deal smaller in recent years due to the Internet, and letting your online contacts know that you are actively searching for a new job can literally open up an entire world of opportunities.
Attend workshops and meetings for your field
There are a wide variety of meetups, gatherings and seminars that will put you into direct contact with others in your field of expertise. Be sure to have a supply of updated business cards available. While this may seem like it’s just for fun, many employers attend these events looking for new candidates. Attendance at these events shows a prospective employer that you are ambitious and enthusiastic about your career.
Update your business cards
Instead of your entire physical address, something that is far less important now than in prior eras, use the space to provide links to your social media sites. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter accounts make it possible for a prospective employer to learn more about you; LinkedIn has an online resume that makes it possible for even more prospective employers to see your skills.  You will of course want to include your email address and cellphone number.
Networking is an important step in the job search process and it can be an enjoyable one. So load up a few resumes (depending on the type of gathering), build a stash of business cards, and head out.

The Biggest Networking Mistakes

InterviewingJob SearchNetworking

Networking is an absolute must for a successful career. Unfortunately, many people consider networking events as nothing more than social time akin to a cocktail party. The truth is that networking events are more like a pre-interview on a mass scale. You are on display and you ensure that your goals, value, and expertise are communicated effectively.
One of the most basic mistakes is that people tend to dress down for these networking events. While you don’t necessarily have to dress for an interview, dressing well conveys respect for others as well as for yourself. Besides, every psychological study ever done shows that when people dress they are apt to have more confidence. So put on your best business casual attire and and head to the gathering.
Another mistake people make is not having business cards ready to hand out. Sure, you can use a digital card on your phone and send it to them. But that only works if their phone has that capability and that they know how to use the application. While it may be old school, it is still easier to hand a business card over. Even better, ask which the employer/recruiter would prefer-digital or card in hand. This way they know that you are current with the latest technology, yet still understand the traditional niceties.
Be certain that you observe proper etiquette when at a networking event. The purpose of these events is to mingle and meet as many people as possible. To do this you need to be confident but not pompous. Make certain that you don’t monopolize any one company and be sure to be respectful of everyone you meet. You never know when or where your paths may cross again.
Finally, never stop making contacts in your field. You need these people not only to stay up on current trends, but you may one day need a reference, a new job or even a contact if your company is looking to expand into a new market. It never hurts to plan ahead.