Since the global crisis started, virtual activities have become the new normal for people most especially for career hunters. Online job fairs are among the best options to grab your dream job. Virtual career fairs are just like the traditional ones, where employers gather to meet with job seekers and discuss employment opportunities. The only difference here is that online job fairs are held virtually on an interactive platform. It’s one of the newest trends in recruiting here in the Philippines. Hosting an online career fair allows employers to meet with a large number of potential employees without having to be physically present at an event. If you’re considering attending one, there are several things that you should do before the fair begins. Read on for these tips that will help you prepare for many of the exciting job opportunities in the Philippines or even around the world!
Before the fair
1. Update your resume
If you are looking for new employment, this is the perfect time to update your resume. Your resume should always reflect your most relevant and valuable skills and experience, it should also be up to date if you have important career updates and outdated information. Before you join a virtual career fair make sure to review your resume. It’s highly advisable to include your achievements, promotions, completed certifications, and newly acquired skills to give your resume a top-notch.
2. Do your research about the companies
Take time to learn about the companies that will be participating in the online job fair. Review the list of employers who will be attending and make a list of who you’ll be interested to speak with at the fair. Do some research and explore the companies that interest you, focusing on mission, culture, goals, and skills they value. Look into their website or search for recent news articles or any relevant information about them to formulate the possible questions that you can also ask to make conversation during your virtual career fair. Do your research on employers who are interested in hiring for positions that match yours. Use tools like LinkedIn, Google+, or even Twitter to find out which companies are participating in this event so you can tailor your questions accordingly.
3. Practice your elevator pitch
An elevator pitch is a concise, well-structured synopsis of who you are and what you do. Elevator Pitch doesn’t only work for marketers but also for job seekers. Your elevator pitch should answer these questions:
- Who are you?
- What do you do?
- Why should the recruiter listen to you?
- What do you want?
Here’s a sample of an elevator pitch, practice this so that your interview flows smoothly when you introduce yourself to a potential employer in an online fair. “I am a marketing person but I specialize in digital marketing. I currently work at SM group of companies and my team is coming up with a marketing campaign that will help companies achieve increased sales and revenue which will be launched at the end of the year. I thrive on learning new things and meeting people that share the same background with me, and I am also thinking of changing my job soon so I am willing to learn about work environments in different companies.”
4. Prepare your space
For virtual career fairs, you’ll need a webcam, a microphone, and a speaker for the participants to see and hear you. If possible, set up your laptop in front of a window with good lighting so that everyone can see you clearly. You also have to make sure to have backup options in case you’ll experience technical difficulties or glitches.
At the fair
1. Dress for success
Dress up appropriately by wearing clothes according to the dress code of the recruiters and employees. Wearing the appropriate attire will also boost up your confidence during the job fair and having great confidence can get you into a job opportunity in the Philippines. Dressing the same way you would for an in-person job fair is highly recommended for virtual career fairs. There is a possibility that even in a virtual fair you can have a video chat with an employer. Dressing up a bit will make a good impression on the employer.
2. Prepare your resume and/or CV
Make sure that you have a clear copy of your resume or CV so that potential employers can read it as well if they want to interview you in person. There is a possibility for them to call you back, after reading your credentials and skills needed at their company. Take note: make sure not to talk too much when presenting yourself on video because this will distract them from what they are trying to see, which is how good you would fit into the team.
3. Arrive on time
Although an online job fair is not attending a physical job fair, it is still very important to show up at your selected session on time. This will give you an opportunity to stand out at a virtual job fair.
4. Use good body language
For online events or activities, body language and how you show yourself matters. Good body language will support your appearance to the employer at a visual career fair. Give them a genuine smile when introducing yourself. Show them your interest and engagement by having proper eye contact. Look straight into the camera when you are speaking and not on the recruiter’s video but avoid using body language such as or crossing arms (which could signify discomfort). Employers are more likely to select candidates who show them their best personality at the virtual job fair.
5. Avoid technology errors
There is a chance of having something wrong with your video, audio, or connection to the employer’s computer during an online job fair. The most important thing you can do is research for these common mistakes so that they won’t happen and have a backup plan in case it does. For example, if there is no way to connect through your webcam then provide written answers instead. Be sure not to let any mishaps discourage you from continuing on with other employers when this happens because what matters most is being professional about it by apologizing sincerely and asking for another opportunity later on after fixing the problem.
6. Take notes
Be sure to have a notebook and a pen beside your computer to write down important notes and contact information. Takedown information like the name and email address of the recruiter or employer you spoke to. It is also okay to ask about the hiring process so that you can be absolutely certain if you are following it correctly.
Joining a virtual job fair will give you a unique and challenging experience in job hunting but will surely open new windows of opportunities for you. If it’s your first time participating, follow these tips so you can land a job without leaving your homes.