|About Job Fairs|
Tips and Nice-to-Have Info for Job Fairs
What are job fairs?
As the name implies, job fairs are typically fair-like environments, in that employers assemble in rows of booths to speak to you about their jobs. Event producers typically plan the larger ones and advertise them at job banks, participating-employers' sites, on their own sites, and in local newspapers. They take place on college campuses and in hotels, auditoriums, arenas and such.
Employers at some of the larger job fairs build sophisticated booths to show off their culture, products and services. That's to attract your attention and "sell" you on the companies, much like they would at trade shows to attract and sell customers. The event producers might even provide entertainment, games, giveaways, networking and knowledge events, and other activities to make it a more festive, fair-like atmosphere. You walk up and down the rows of booths essentially "shopping" for jobs, giving another meaning to the term job market.
Job fairs are excellent places to land employment, because employers are there expressly to line up candidates for interviews. Some even interview and hire on the spot. Natch, they don't just hand you a job on a silver platter, and you have to sell yourself if you want your resume to at least go in the "maybe" stack. But it doesn't get much better than this for job seekers!
Most job fairs are free for job seekers, but some charge small entrance fees. Some might charge fees for products and services, such as food and resume duplication. Learning seminars, classes and such might require fees, whether or not the job fair does.
To help ensure accuracy, many job fair producers typically don't advertise all the details until about a week or two before the events. If details are not yet available when you check producers' Web sites, just check back about a week before the events. If details are still skimpy, contact the producers using the information at their sites. Also check your local newspapers.
Dates and locations are subject to change because of weather, not enough or too many participating employers, etc. So, it's a good idea to double-check for changes, just before the scheduled dates.
Job fairs typically do not require advanced registration. But some do, so you might research
more than just the upcoming week, especially if you intend to travel out of town to attend. Seminars, classes, networking
events and such might require advanced registration, whether or not the job fair does.
Many of the producers accept your resume before and after the event, and forward it to participating employers for free.
Look for this option at their Web sites.
If the event producers fail to give you good driving directions, try the resources below for printable maps with driving