As more career fairs adopt a virtual format, some rules remain the same while others change. Instead of waiting in line to speak to a recruiter, virtual career fairs, especially those through Handshake, allow you to schedule 1-on-1 and group meetings with employers without any hassle. Although these meetings are still limited to ten (1:1 meetings) to 30 (group sessions) minutes at length, you will still get the opportunity to pitch yourself and learn more about the organization. Here are some tips on how you can win over a recruiter and secure the job at a virtual career fair, courtesy of Lauren Kim, KMPG Recruiter:
- Be clear and concise in your elevator pitch, resume objective, and answers to questions. Be respectful of the recruiter’s time. They have limited time and several students to meet.
- Apply to jobs through the official channels. It is the best way to get your application in. Although recruiters have coffee chat hours, they receive many LinkedIn messages and emails that they don’t have time to respond to.
- The career fair is virtual, but treat it like it’s an in-person interview. Keep your cameras on and dress professionally. Do not wear excessive makeup and jewelry. Even though you will mostly be seen from shoulders up, wearing a formal outfit can help you get into a professional mindset. Learn to look into the camera so it looks like you’re maintaining eye contact.
- Maintain a positive attitude! A good first impression is everything.
- Be conversational! Recruiters are human, and establishing that interpersonal connection will help you when networking.
Following these tips will help you gain the most out of your experience. A career fair is where you can apply for a job, make yourself known to a recruiter, and network with like-minded professionals. Take advantage of this opportunity and good luck!