Preparing for virtual careers fairs: top tips
Virtual careers fairs are fast becoming a common way for employers and industries to connect with up-and-coming talent (aka you!). They are a great opportunity for you to network with professionals in your field, discover where your career could take you, and help you find new roles and opportunities in your field.
So how can you make the most of a virtual careers fair? Here are a few of our top tips.
While some fairs let you register and join on the day, it’s a good idea to register before the event. This can ensure you receive reminders and notifications in the lead up to the event, as well as any resources or bonus content the organisers send out.
Do your research
After you register, start looking into the organisations who have signed up to be there on the day and decide which of them you’d like to connect with. A pet peeve of many employers is having to answer basic questions that can already be found on their website, so be sure to do your research before the day.
Prepare to make new connections
This means sprucing up your LinkedIn profile and/or your portfolio (depending on your field). Updating your resume is also a great idea – and you can definitely have it ready on the day in case any opportunities arise (you can upload it to Rate My Resume if you want some immediate feedback beforehand).
You should also start thinking about how you’ll introduce yourself, and the questions you have for the industry representatives you’ll be speaking with (the more specific, the better).
Some good examples of questions include:
“What do interns/graduates typically find the most challenging when joining your organisation?”
“How long have you worked at ____? What do you like most about the organisation?”
“What type of tasks can graduates expect to undertake?”
“Can you tell me more about the stages of the recruitment process?”
“How would you describe the culture?”
Prepare your set-up
Unlike face-to-face careers fairs, virtual careers fairs involve some minor technical prep before and during the event. The first, and most important aspect of your technical set-up is your camera: make sure it is on! It’s hard to make a good first impression with employers if they can’t even see you. Also make sure you’re situated somewhere with good lighting and minimal background noise so you can focus on the event, and the organisations you connect with can hear you.
On the whole ‘making a good impression’ front, it’s also smart to dress nicely for the event. While you don’t need to be wearing a suit, dress smartly and make sure you look put together before logging in to the fair. A good first impression is always assisted by dressing the part.
Finally, make sure you’re on time and have your questions already prepared. You could be the first to arrive, which creates a good impression and may give you extra time with an employer that other attendees don’t get.
After the fair
Once the fair is over, this is the time to send across your applications for any of the roles that stood out to you during the event. It’s a good idea to reference your meeting with the organisation at the fair in your application.
It’s also a good idea to reach out and connect with the people you spoke with on LinkedIn to thank them for their time.
Be sure to check out our Virtual Careers Fairs Resources page for resources to set up your Zoom account with a professional background and profile image, as well as a one-page document summarising our virtual careers fair advice.
Featured image courtesy of Unsplash
By Mia Casey