If you're looking for a job, a Job or Career Fair is a good starting point. By including it as part of your job search plan, you will obtain invaluable face time with representatives from a variety of companies at one convenient location.
Many people believe Job Fairs are a quick way to get hired on the spot. While the company representatives do provide information about general career opportunities as well as specific details on current openings, the main purpose of a Job Fair is to meet company representatives in person and establish relationships with employers you want to work for.
A successful Job Fair experience seldom results in immediate employment, but it's a good place to perfect your on-the-spot interviewing and networking skills. Events such as these are excellent opportunities to look at the job market as a whole, interact with numerous companies, and satisfy your curiosity about a wide variety of career opportunities.
"Talk to as many people as you can; never underestimate the value of face time with recruiters from leading companies.And, just as importantly, listen to them, too. Pay attention to the questions you're being asked and to the kind of information they're offering. It's impossible to leave without something of value," advises Tory Johnson, founder of Women for Hire.
Before heading to a Job Fair, SLATE recommends that you review our presentation entitled Navigating through a Job Fair, available at www.slideshare.net/SLATEMCC.It walks participants through the steps which will help make their Job/Career Fair experience a positive one. "Remember to smile to everybody, starting with the gatekeepers and others waiting in queue line, definitely smile when talking to recruiters. Recent studies suggest that smiling faces are easier to remember,"states Frank Alaniz, Missouri Workforce Regional Liaison, who coordinates SLATE's Bounceback STL program for dislocated professionals and other jobseekers.
Alaniz calls attention to those questions that attendees should not ask recruiters at the Job Fair; instead he provides examples of what can and should be addressed. He stresses: "Don't be offended if the recruiter doesn't take your resume or business card. Don't get disappointed if you weren't offered a job. Your participation is an indication that you are doing everything right."
Details about upcoming Job Fairs conducted by SLATE can be found on our website, www.stlworks.com. For a listing of all networking events scheduled in the St. Louis area, go to www.stlworks.com, >Help for Job Seekers,>Job Opportunities, >Recruitment and Job Fairs. For career guidance,visit our Career Center and ask to speak with one of our Career Specialists.
St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment