Resume Tips for Job Fair Success
April 14, 2009
by Kim Isaacs | Monster Resume Expert
Whether you’re a recent graduate seeking your first position or an experienced professional in search of a new opportunity, attending job fairs is one way to network and find job leads. Job fairs allow you to meet hiring managers from various companies and industries — all housed under one roof for the day. These tips will help you make the best impression.
Research Job Fair Companies
“When meeting candidates at job fairs, I like to see that they’ve done their research,” says Louis Dennis, a human resources representative for State Farm Insurance Companies in Greeley, Colorado, who regularly recruits employees by attending job fairs.
“Folks who can sit down with me already knowing something about the company and the types of jobs they’re interested in are very impressive to me.”
It’s usually possible to obtain a list of employers participating in a job fair ahead of time. The best-prepared candidates will have already spent time researching corporate cultures, missions and open job opportunities posted on resources like Monster or employer Web sites.
“If someone can say to me, ‘I’m interested in underwriting or claims’ and can back up why they’re a good fit, I’m immediately going to be impressed,” Dennis says.
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Develop Multiple Versions of Your Resume
After you’ve done your homework, tailor your resume based on your job objective, and consider bringing multiple versions to the career fair, says Christina MacGill, associate director of career programming for career services at Pennsylvania State University.
“Once candidates have done their research on participating companies, they can create a few different resumes targeting these,” MacGill advises. “For example, someone interested in finance can research typical job titles and types of responsibilities and then create several different versions accordingly. They also might create one resume targeted to working for banks and another one tailored to working for the finance division of a large firm like GE.”
You should also prepare a general resume without a specific objective. “That way, candidates can be prepared for any situation at a job fair by keeping their options open and having multiple resume versions ready to go,” MacGill says.