Job Fair Preparation and Etiquette
Job fairs provide you with an opportunity to make face to face contact with many employers. At some fairs you also have the opportunity to interview for open positions. CSB and SJU Career Services sponsor a number of job fairs throughout the year and encourage you to attend those that meet your career goals. Other job fairs will also be offered. Keep an eye on our home page, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the St. Paul Pioneer Press, and flyers posted in the Career Resource Centers to learn about upcoming fairs.
Before the Fair
- Meet with Career Services staff to discuss your strategy and preparation for the fair.
- Review the list of participating organizations and their positions. Determine which ones are of interest.
- Research the organizations that interest you by visiting the Career Resource Center and the organizations' web sites.
- Prioritize your organizations of interest.
- Prepare resumes for the organizations and positions that interest you.
- Develop an introductory statement to use as you meet employers.
For help, check out our online workshop, "Meeting & Greeting Employers at a Fair."
- If you'll be interviewing at the fair, work on your interviewing skills by visiting with a Career Services professional and/or participating in mock interviews.
- Review your strengths, skills, goals, and interests and consider how they relate to the positions available. Be prepared to promote your suitability for the position and to express your interest.
- Develop a list of questions for the employers that interest you.
- Wear proper job fair attire, usually a business suit.
At the Fair
- Obtain a map of the facility and determine where your target companies are located.
- If you are pressed for time, approach your priority companies first to ensure that you will have a chance to speak to them. However, if an organization has a long line of candidates, visit other key organizations and return later. If this is your first fair and you are nervous, you might start with some of your lower priority companies to become comfortable with the process. Move onto your higher priority companies as you gain more confidence.
- Be assertive. Approach employers, extend your hand, and introduce yourself. Be prepared to carry the conversation and ask questions. Employers will want to see how you handle yourself and how you utilize your interpersonal communication skills.
- Provide employers with a copy of your resume and describe how you would be a good fit for the position and the organization.
- Collect company information for further research.
- Ask the recruiter for their business card so you can follow-up later with a thank-you note.
- Thank recruiters for their time.
After the Fair
- Write thank you notes to recruiters from companies that are of particular interest to you.
- Follow-up on leads by calling the recruiter if you haven't heard from them within two weeks.