What is a hiring event you ask? Hiring events are similar in concept to job fairs, but are generally smaller in scale in that they typically involve one employer and may be held right at the employer’s site. Considering that they are quite intimate, are they worth going to? Absolutely! They provide job seekers a great opportunity to meet face to face with someone who makes hiring decisions. Plus, many times hiring decisions can be made on the spot! Sounds great, right? So, how do you prepare for one of these?
Bring what they ask:
While job fairs may be a way to advertise the company and generate interest for job openings down the line, employers usually hold hiring events because they have more than one opening that they are trying to fill immediately. The hiring event posting will probably have a few specific requests on what to bring so that the employer is able to better assess your qualifications straightaway. Common requests may include proof of a specific certification, maybe a portfolio of your work, and more than likely your updated resume. Be sure to follow the requests and present everything in an organized manner. If you haven’t updated your resume in a while, now is a great opportunity to take some time to make sure that it is accurate and in line with what is expected on a modern resume. You’ll find a good article on resume building here.
Follow general interview etiquette:
Just like in a traditional interview, the proper protocol is to come appropriately dressed and ready to have a professional conversation with a manager. These events give job seekers the opportunity to actually interact with the employer as opposed to being just a name with some job history on an online application. This means you want to make sure you’re making a great impression! How to dress the part can vary and may not necessarily involve wearing a suit, so you may want to do a little research beforehand. In general, being neat, well groomed, and siding on the more conservative side, are probably safe standards. Prepare yourself for general interview questions and be ready to articulate your experience. Also, let the employer know why you want to work for them. Employers love hearing this!
Demonstrate your soft-skills:
It’s a no-brainer that having the direct qualifications and work experience for the job will delight the employer. Did you know that having basic things like a pleasant personality, a positive attitude, and sincere kindness are also highly valued? Having the right hard-skills is great because the employer knows that you can come in with minimal training, but having those soft-skills is priceless, since those generally cannot be taught. So, be nice and remember the good manners that your mama taught you!
Have the time:
Typically, there is a very precise timeframe when the hiring event will be held. With some hiring events, you can be in and out of there in minutes. Others may take a bit longer before you’re able to talk to someone. There are hiring events that give you the opportunity to schedule a specific time to meet with someone. If given the option, do this! This will be a benefit to both you and the employer. If you do have to wait, just remember, not only will you get to meet your potential manager, this might happen before even going through the online application process, so there is still a definite plus that makes it worth your time. Remember to be patient, someone will be with you as soon as possible.