- Do your homework! Research employers that will be attending the fair. Who are the top 5-10 employers that you want to speak with? Be certain to review their websites, the positions they are recruiting for (available on SpartaJobs), and check for any recent news articles about the company. Know what the organization does, who their customers are, what their mission is, and what (if applicable) their products are. This will help you with tips 2 and 3!
- Prepare targeted resumes! Using the information you gathered from your research, prepare targeted resumes for each of the organizations you are interested in speaking with. Utilize class projects, volunteer work, internships and part time work to demonstrate how your skills match their position. Need help? Check out our 8 minute resume tutorial for tips and sample resumes! And don’t forget to prepare some general resumes for employers you connect with that may not be on your top 5-10 list.
- Practice your one minute commercial! Do you know what you want to say when you get in front of an employer? The one minute commercial will help you to briefly share with an employer your interest in their organization, and how you can add value. Your research will help you to tailor your experience to their organization. Remember, this is a way to start a conversation, not a speech to be memorized. Watch for nonverbal cues from the employer to indicate when to take a breath and let the employer ask you a question. Keep in mind, the question they ask will likely relate to the information you were planning on sharing! Need help with your one minute commercial or want to see an example? Check out our online Job Fair Success Workshop. Log into SpartaJobs at www.careercenter.sjsu.edu for access.
- Dress the part! Part of presenting yourself to an employer is ensuring that your appearance is polished and professional. That means business or business casual dress, neat hair and nails, and no perfume or cologne. Leave your backpack at home and instead organize your materials (resume, cover letter, calendar and Tower Card) in a professional folder. For more tips on professional dress check out http://www.careercenter.sjsu.edu/students/launch/Business_etiquette/dress4success/dress4success.html
- Take a deep breath! Remember, employers who are attending the fair are interested in networking and getting to know you! While you may not receive a job offer at the fair, this is an opportunity to make an impression and put a face with your resume. Take a deep breath, shake off your nerves and approach your top employers one at a time. Be certain to thank each employer before moving on and ask for a way to follow up. This way you can send a thank you email to each employer after the fair.
Once the fair is over, set up a system to keep track of follow up activities like thank you notes, positions you have applied for online, and next steps. If you need additional help with your job or internship search, make an appointment with one of our career consultants by logging into SpartaJobs and clicking “request a counseling appointment”. We’re here to help you succeed!
Best of luck at the fair!