Attending a job fair is a great opportunity to meet with multiple employers and brands all in one place. But it can get pretty stressful too, especially if you're not prepared in advance. Here are some key tips to successfully navigate a job fair:
#1: Be informed about the event.
Make sure you know where you are going, and how long the job fair is running until. If you arrive early, you can prep and run through all the details once more. Also, you may have a slight advantage when meeting with the employers at an earlier time, because it is not as busy. Just don't arrive late or else you might not even get to meet with any recruiters.
#2: Research the companies.
Even though you are not having a formal one-on-one meeting with the employer, you still have to do research beforehand. You don't want to leave a bad impression and seem uninformed about the business you are looking to work for. If it helps, jot down key information on your phone or notepad. Then you can refer back to it between speaking at different tables.
#3: Dress professionally.
Remember to dress for success, and as if you were walking into a typical job interview. Even if you don't wear a blazer, at least, have on a collared shirt/blouse, pants and dress shoes. Read our blog, How to Dress for a Restaurant Job Interview, for basic job interview attire tips.
#4: Prepare an introductory statement about yourself.
Since you will only have a limited amount of time to talk with hiring managers, you want to use it wisely. If you prepare a brief 20 to 30-second introduction about yourself, you won't have to worry about it on the spot. However, don't memorize your speech word-for-word; be natural.
#5: Have a list of questions ready.
Write down specific questions you want to ask employers regarding the job and/or hiring process. For example, you probably want to know the job responsibilities, career development and growth opportunities, etc. Tip–Ask for a business card or email, so that you can continue corresponding with them.