Making the most of a career fair

April 19, 2017

job seekerThe 2017 Career and Job Fair Expo in Elizabethtown is an excellent opportunity for job seekers to discover employment opportunities and to speak with local employers in person, and with some preparation, job seekers can reap the most benefit from their attendance.

The fair is set for Thursday, April 20, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pritchard Community Center.

These tips will help ensure job seekers make the most of their time at a career fair.

Prepare your resume. If you already have a resume, review it to make sure it includes your most current experience. If you need help creating or refining a resume, career counselors at the KCC-LT can help. Plus, members of ESHRM will be available during the fair to assist with resume preparation and other aspects of your job search.

Determine which employers to meet. A list of participating employers is available here, so make a game plan for speaking with representatives of the companies that interest you. Research these companies to learn what they do and what type of employees they want to hire. Determine how your skills and interests fit the company’s needs, and prepare thoughtful questions in advance.

Plan a brief introduction. Employers want to know about you. Be prepared to showcase your skills and experience in a short pitch. In 30 seconds or less, explain who you are, what you do and how your abilities meet the employer’s needs. Practice several versions of your pitch so you can deliver it with confidence, sounding conversational rather than rehearsed.

Dress for success. First impressions are significant. Keep that in mind when choosing what to wear to the job fair and how to present yourself. Business attire is most appropriate and sends a positive message to an employer. Make sure your clothes are clean, pressed and modest.

Bring supplies. If you have your resume prepared, be sure to bring plenty of copies. Carrying them in a portfolio will help you stay organized and appear professional while also providing a space to jot down notes and collect business cards, employer literature and other items. 

Arrive early. Give yourself time to speak with as many of the employers on your list as possible.

Show initiative. When meeting employers, demonstrate interest by shaking hands and introducing yourself, as well asking appropriate questions. Maintain eye contact and be attentive and polite.

Follow up with employers. By sending a thank-you note or email a day or two after the job fair, you will reintroduce yourself to an employer, reinforce your interest in the company and show that you are serious in your job search.

The Kentucky Career Center – Lincoln Trail helps match job seekers with local employment and training opportunities. Our business solutions team offers employers of all sizes and industries personalized support to build a competitive workforce. We are an equal opportunity employer.
Program is funded with Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Title I funds through the Kentucky Education and Labor Cabinet and the Lincoln Trail Workforce Development Board.
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