Since 2019, many things have changed drastically due to the global coronavirus pandemic. It became harder to travel, go to work or school, and more. Virtual activities have become the new normal in most industries. And job fairs aren’t excluded from this.
Before, job fairs are usually conducted onsite or face-to-face, but doing it online has also become a trend. In the comfort of our homes, companies and candidates meet their perfect match online.
Now, while some of us are familiar with job fairs, others are not. So let’s first discuss one of the first questions people ask, “What is a job fair?”
Job Fair: Connects Companies and Candidates
A job fair is an event that creates an opportunity for multiple recruiters, hiring managers, and employers to meet with potential hires. Of course, this is also a great opportunity for the candidates.
For recruiters, hiring managers, and employers, job fairs save their time in sourcing candidates. And for candidates, it also saves them the effort of looking manually look for companies with open positions.
The usual Job fairs have booths that candidates go to, but in Virtual Job fairs, you meet employers in a virtual space like Zoom or Google Meet.
How to prepare for a Virtual Job Fair?
Like any other event, Virtual Job Fairs also need preparations to succeed. Let’s tackle some of them.
1. Update your resumé, CV, or Portfolio
An updated resumé or CV highlighting your soft and hard skills will surely help you better than an outdated one. Make sure to keep it short and direct, but it should also highlight your hard and soft skills. Also include your achievements, certifications, acquired skills, promotions, or anything else you want to highlight.
Don’t forget to link the proof of your skills and achievements, such as projects and certifications. Repeatedly review and revise, when necessary, before the job fair.
Let’s do a recap:
- Make it short and direct
- Highlight your hard and soft skills
- Add your achievements, such as certifications, promotions, and anything else you consider as your achievements.
- Don’t forget to link the projects you have made (especially if you’re a developer)
- Review and revise
Always remember, let your resumé, CV, and/or portfolio brag about you and your skills, but stay humble.
You can also read our article to learn what an excellent resume can do for your job search.
2. Do your research about the companies
It’s always good to be ahead of the competition and know about the company you are going to meet. This is to be prepared on what to expect and to also look for interesting companies you prefer.
But what are the things you should research? Here are some:
- Know their company’s basic who, what, why, where, when, and how
- Try to learn who’s going to represent their companies
- Know their candidate preferences (likes and dislikes)
- Know their do’s and don’ts
- Try to learn about their company culture
Always remember, “knowledge is power.” And when you know who you are talking to, you can prepare better and make a good impression.
3. Prepare good questions
One of the goals you should have in a career fair is gathering useful information. And useful information can be gathered by asking good questions.
Having something you are curious about in a company may also indicate your interest in them and, thus, would make a good impression. But of course, your questions should also display professionalism.
Here are some of the types of questions you may ask during a job fair and sample questions:
Their job opening details
- Your job description says [the thing you are curious or confused about]. Can I learn more about this? What does this mean?
- I would love the have the right expectation, mindset, and preparations, so may I know the team’s goal for the next three months?
- I don’t have a background on this [requirement], and I’m willing to learn it, but I have worked on [something relevant]. Would that be okay?
Their hiring process
- How does your hiring process go?
- Can you tell me more about [the stage you are curious or confused about]?
- How long does it usually take to get the result?
Their expectations or preferences in a candidate
- What do you look for in a candidate that’s not written in the job requirements?
- What are your expectations from a candidate once they are hired?
- I love improving myself in any way I can, so if it’s okay, may I know if I meet your expectations and preferences? Can you tell me what I can improve more?
Their company culture
- How would you describe your company culture?
- How is your experience in the company as an employee?
- What is the boss like? Or How is the lead of this open role like?
Let’s do a recap:
- Their job opening details
- Their hiring process
- Their expectations or preferences in a candidate
- What they look for in a candidate
Always remember, good questions benefit you because you get to gather useful information that you can use not just at that job fair and in the future as well. When things don’t go your way now, at least you will learn a lot from this experience.
4. Make a Good Impression
When looking for a job or meeting employers in an interview, making a good impression is a must. Clean your place to make a neat background and to be presentable and professional. Of course, you should also make yourself presentable and pleasing to the eye. This makes an impression that you are serious about this job fair and that you are professional.
Arrive on time or, better, be earlier than the company representatives. Prepare a good pitch marketing yourself with enough humility, meaning you’re not being cocky.
Lastly, you should have a well-prepared pitch that markets yourself without bragging too much. And don’t just prepare one; also deliver a pitch with humility and avoid being too cocky about your achievements. It’s good to highlight, but not too much.
Let’s do a recap:
- Have a neat and professional space (or background)
- Test your internet, video, and audio quality before the job fair
- Dress well
- Arrive on time
- Have a well-prepared pitch
Always remember that first impressions may not last to some, but to others, they do. So make a good one and let that first impression take you to where you want to be.
5. Take notes
Notes will be your “friend that is always there when you need them.” Taking notes can be done even before the job fair, way when you are researching about the companies you will meet. It can be done during companies’ introductions and when they are answering your questions or other job seekers’ questions.
Here are some of the notes you may want to consider:
- Jot down important information you don’t know yet about the companies or the representative
- Make a list of skills you don’t have yet but are mentioned or are popular among the companies
- List companies that impress you
- Also, take note of impressive pitches from other candidates, especially those that seem to interest companies
Always remember useful notes are knowledge available when needed. It will be useful not just during the job fair but also for future reference.
Benefits of Looking For Your Developer Job Through Village 88 (For Village 88 Alumni ONLY)
Helping you in your tech career journey doesn’t stop when you finish our training program. We will also help you land a job! Here’s how we can help you more:
- You won’t have to look for companies to apply to; we will do that for you.
- We’ll recommend you to our partner companies.
- We’ll match you with companies looking for developers with your skill sets.
- You have the choice to join the companies we will recommend to you.
Village 88 job fair is one of our ways to guide you in your career journey after our training. We always hope for your success!
For job seekers and career shifters who are new to the industry, joining job fairs can be your major career changer. Help yourself by making good impressions and learning more about the market. And help the market learn more about you and make better decisions. Especially when you know, you will be their best decision, and they are your best decision.
Always remember what Benjamin Franklin said, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” This can be applied to preparation; if you fail to prepare, you prepare for failure. Make your job fair experience successful by preparing well and doing your best!
If you are an aspiring developer looking for an opportunity to learn how to code, our Batch 4 online training program registration is still open. Join now while there are still slots left! You can visit us at www.village88.com/ph/cs_training/ to learn more and sign up.