It’s that time of year again! Career and job fairs are upon us, and so is the chance to land an amazing job. Whether you are a first-timer or a seasoned professional, the following seven tips are sure to help you find success (and hopefully your dream job)!
- Plan ahead of time– be sure to make a list of employers you plan to visit, typically in priority order. The career fair can be extremely confusing so plan ahead and bring the locations of companies you want to visit, as well as a map of the BJC (you can find a list of these on our website)!
- Come prepared– a huge part of landing your dream job is being prepared to speak to companies. Before attending the career fair research the company you are interested in so that you are able to confidently speak with recruiters. Are they currently in the news for something positive? What is the company’s mission? What are the job requirements for the position? Tip: create a list of notes before the fair and glance them over quickly before speaking to the company!
- Dress for success– the first step to getting the part is looking the part. When attending career fairs always dress your best, this includes everything from your suit to the portfolio you use to hold your resume!
- Bring your resume- you can never bring too many copies of your resume when attending the fair! Employers may ask for more than one copy, and some may prefer an electronic version. It is also recommended that students use business grade resume paper and stop by the Career and Corporate Connections Office to ensure that your resume’s format is the best it can be. Tip: you can even tailor your interests and skills to those of the different companies you are applying too!
- Make a strong first impression– now that you look the part you need to act it! Make sure to have a strong handshake and to make eye contact. Focus on nailing your 30-second elevator pitch and remember that practice makes perfect! Tip: your elevator pitch should align your academic achievements and interests, your professional skill set, and your long-term career goals to those of the company.
- Always ask for contact information– after talking to recruiters it is crucial to ask for a business card! After, make sure to save the business card and write a note or two on the back to remember exactly what you discussed.
- Follow up– this may seem like a small step, but most of the time it is actually the most important! A good follow up email can help you to secure the job or internship. Remember to always address the recruiter formally and to mention what you discussed with them in hopes they remember your conversation. Tip: never forget to express how interested you are in the opportunity and why!
Career fairs are often overwhelming and intimidating but coming prepared and following these seven steps is sure to take some of the pressure off! These few steps can help put you ahead of the competition. Most importantly don’t forget to smile, best of luck!