While virtual job fairs have been around for a while, they are booming now more than ever and with good reason. The pandemic has pushed us all into doing things virtually, but virtual job fairs are now “a thing” and they are not slowing down any time soon. While initially created out of necessity and safety, these career fests are here to stay because of the abundance of benefits.
Online job fairs are beneficial to employers, colleges, and to the millions of Americans who are unemployed and actively seeking jobs. Virtual fairs provide companies, organizations, and educational institutions opportunities to view a large pool of potential candidates based on the ease of the platform they utilize to host the event. Job seekers also have the opportunity to review and apply to several companies and organizations in one day to help find out which ones would be a good fit. (The best part is, you can dress up from the waist up and no one will ever know!)
The 411 on The Online Career Fair
Job fairs are essentially speed dating for employers and potential employees. In a virtual job fair, each employer has a company representative or recruiter who will engage attendees in an online space, or room, created by an event platform like Everytale. Once there, interested job seekers will likely be greeted in a chat window. There they will have the opportunity to learn more about the business or organization, and they can ask questions about different roles, the culture of the company, and any other essential topics.
Creating a Profile is Just The Start
Candidates create a profile, upload their resumes, and are on their way to finding a job. Then recruiters can view an attendee’s profile to get an idea of who they are, what their skills are, and whether or not they would like to speak further with a candidate. Online events are meant to promote two-way communication so both parties get the chance to participate.
Once an online chat room opens up, recruiters love job seekers who jump in with questions and dialogue with other attendees. Likewise, attendees are looking for recruiters that project the kind of authenticity and culture that they are looking to find in an organization. At a virtual job fair, candidates can also ask for one-on-one time with recruiters to discuss specific jobs or get more information about a certain industry as well as pitch their qualifications. And on the flip side, job seekers can be asked by interested recruiters to video chat directly. Oftentimes, attendees get hired on the spot, which is another reason online job fairs are so popular. Think about it; you woke up this morning, rolled out of bed, made coffee, and found a new job, all from the comfort of your own home! What a time we all live in! The next question is, what will you do with the rest of your day?
Virtual Fair Types
There are a few types of job fairs that are well-suited for the virtual world, including
Single Industry -These career affairs are focused on a particular industry like marketing, IT, and Finance. Sometimes it may be an industry that is facing a shortage in their workforce like hospitality. These online fairs allow businesses and corporations to find a concentration of individuals who are trained, educated, and/or interested in their line of work. Likewise, job candidates get to explore a number of companies that are solely focused on their areas of expertise.
Career Information – These are similar to job fairs, but have more of a mixed bag of purposes. There are often corporations, universities, military reps, non-profits, temp agencies, and so on who are there not only to share job opportunities but provide industry and training information. You never know who will show up!
Single-Employer – These types of fairs are conducted by large corporations or businesses that employ a large workforce. These events can be very helpful for potential employees who are looking for a job with one particular company. Single employer fairs are great for companies because they have a group of singular-focused job seekers who want to work for a specific brand.
University – These types of events hosted by a university are perfect for current and future students who are looking for an occupational direction. Recruiters from various industries are often present, scouting out potential candidates to fill important positions that will be opening up in the future. These events are advantageous for colleges to provide students with a leg-up on a career path and a great opportunity for employers to reach out to prospective employees.
Why Virtual Fairs Are Ideal For Employers
While virtual job fairs became a necessity to keep people safe during the recent months, they now are actually being recognized for the many benefits in comparison to the old school in-person venues and events:
The employer has the benefit of meeting several high-level candidates all in one place and all in one day. The online job fair gives them opportunities to screening candidates, recruit and interview qualified individuals without losing a lot of time and money for travel. “Interviewing takes up nearly a quarter of the recruiting process at 23%.” They allow businesses to promote their brand and the company’s culture.
Shorter Hiring Time
According to iCIMS, the hiring process takes approximately 41 days! A virtual job fair can cut it down to 1 day. Here is a breakdown of that process:
- 23% – human resource screening of resumes
- 37% – hiring manager reviews
- 23% – interviewing
Likewise, employers have the opportunity to network and connect with other industry professionals and potentially share candidates and expertise.
Event hosts save a lot of money on event centers, catering, parking, and everything else that goes into an in-person event. It doesn’t take long to realize that virtual events are so much more cost-effective!
It is also very beneficial to employers because they can be anywhere in the world and attend these job fairs. The same can be said for potential employees. They need not be in a particular city to apply for jobs across the globe. (Hosts have to be sure to utilize a platform with international capabilities).
More Relevant Matches
With the right platform and candidate matching software, a virtual fair allows for better and more relevant ‘interviewer-interviewee matches because of data and AI algorithms. This leads to higher satisfaction and success from recruiters and job seekers alike. The AI algorithms allow companies who use them to reduce the amount of time it takes to fill a job by 75%.
Maximize The Potential
Colleges and universities have a lot to gain by maximizing the potential of hosting these online job fairs. Job placement for as many of their graduates as possible can be used as a major selling point in bringing in a strong recruiting class each year.
Higher Participation Rate
Another major reason for participating in virtual job fairs, regardless of being the employer or employee, is participation. According to some studies, virtual events have participation around 70% as opposed to 50% for in-person job fairs.
Virtual job fairs also provide better analytics to measure the effectiveness and engagement at these events. This leads to a more scientific evaluation of the job fairs’ success and enables hosts to make necessary improvements for the next event.
And let’s not forget the monetary advantages of online versus in-person:
Virtual: Personnel, Marketing, Technology (~$5K+)
In-Person: Personnel, Marketing, Technology, Venue Rental, Parking, Catering (~$35K+)
Career Fairs Have More To Offer Than Jobs
While the main purpose may be to connect employers with employees, virtual job fairs are a great way to educate. Both employers and universities can benefit from sharing their wealth of knowledge by hosting career seminars, webinars, and virtual symposiums as an additional part of the career fests.
Universities can present on:
– resume writing
– interview skills
– soft skills
– cover letter writing
– 5-minute elevator speeches
– additional education opportunities, and how to market oneself to whatever industries are participating in the event.
Employers can address those same topics, as well as:
– additional training in industry standards
– niche skills
– how to land a job in that field.
Tips For Hosting A Virtual Career Fair
– Utilize an online event marketplace that meets the needs of your company.
– Make sure your representative has all the qualities you are looking for in your future hires.
– Have a space for education where potential employees can get the true ins and outs of your company, industry, culture, etc…
– Determine your goals for the fair as well as metrics for measuring those goals.
– Consider break-out rooms to break the ice and get to know the candidates.
Platforms for Hosting Career Fairs or Recruiting Events
Not all platforms for event and meeting sharing are alike or share the same advantages. It is important to consider what you need to pull off the best virtual job fair event. Some platforms have been around for a while, like Brazen and CareerEco. Other newer platforms like Zoom or Everytale have been developed with current and future trends in mind. Ideally, you want to partner with an event marketplace that helps you to create the event, promote the event, as well as broadcast the event. You need a specialized event marketplace that is/has:
1. Capabilities ranging from small events to 100,000 people
2. User friendly for both planners and event attendees
3. Top-notch technology
4. Individual user profiles
5. Seamless attendee registration
6. Security and encryption
7. Interactive polls and questionnaires before and during the live session
8. Recordings and posts of webinars/symposiums
9. Aesthetically pleasing design and graphics
10. 4K live video broadcasting and recorded HD video
11. Multi-person screen-sharing in live-session
12. Live chat
13. Multi-person dialogue capabilities for engagement
14. Vendor rooms
15. Post-event analytics
16. An on-demand support team
17. Advanced AI algorithms to later deliver curated content to relevant audiences
18. A wide range of transparent pricing options
It is clear that virtual job fairs are here to stay and will continue to grow in popularity. So, if you’re a recruiter or employer looking for the next big thing, this is it.
If you’re not sure how to get started with these types of events, we’ve got the technology and team to help. We offer companies across the world an easy way to host their virtual job fairs through our platform so they can take advantage of this growing trend. Contact us today and let us help make your company more successful by using this technology to your advantage.
Let’s make your career fair the talk of the town or at least the talk of recruiters, universities, and job seekers alike!