employer finding staff through a virtual job fair

How to meet your new boss without leaving home

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We all know online dating is huge. In fact, 40% of us meet our new partner online. So, it’s no surprise that employers are heading online to find staff, too.

So, you’ve tried websites like SEEK, CareerOne and jobactive and haven’t found a match? Then it’s time to try a virtual job fair. It’s just like speed dating online – with businesses trying to meet up with the right staff.

A virtual job fair is not something out of sci-fi or Habbo World. Large companies like Nestle, Unilever and 3M are embracing online job fairs. Here in Australia, places like the University of Southern Queensland and the Queensland Government are giving it a shot.

How does virtual job fair work?

A virtual job fair is like a regular job fair, except everything is online. You simply sign in and step into a virtual 3D world.

Once inside, there’s normally an auditorium where you can hear from companies that are looking to hire. It’s a good way to see if the jobs they have on offer match your skills. It’s also a chance to see if their culture suits you.

In the exhibition hall, all the businesses that are looking for staff have a booth. You can chat online with real people from that business about job opportunities and share your resume with them.

How can I get ready for a job fair that’s held online?

Getting ready for a job fair that is online is much the same as any career fair. Here’s some tips to get you ready to smash it.

1. Get your resume ready

Find out what organisations are going to be there and tailor your resume to match what they’re looking for. You should be able to find out the specific skills they need and prioritise these in your resume.

2. Dress as if you’re going to a real interview

Some virtual job fairs let you talk to businesses through a video call on your mobile phone or web cam. If someone asks to video call you, you need to be ready to go. Dress as if you’re going to a real interview. By dressing for the job, it will mentally prepare you.

You should make sure there is no bright light behind you, otherwise your face could be in dark shadow and hard to see.

You should also be ready to have a online chat conversation or a telephone call.

3. Clean up your social media

When you meet an employer at a job fair online, it’s easy for them to do a quick internet search on you. Make sure you take a look at your social media to make sure there’s no surprises there for your potential new boss.

Don't let drunk pictures end up on Instagram or other social media when you're job hunting

4. Check your internet speed

When you’re trying to make an good first impression in an online world, you don’t want your internet letting you down. If you’re on your mobile phone, stay in one place with good coverage. At home? Run a speed test before you go online. If it’s dodgy, think about using a public library – and take headphones with you.

5. Write down some questions to ask

Time and time again, employers say the best way for job seekers to make good impression is to show interest in their organisation. It’s important to be enthusiastic and ask questions. And not just any questions – don’t ask about holidays and lunch breaks. Ask questions that show you’re interested in what they do.

This video shows you some common questions you could expect to get at an interview to help you prepare.

Images: iStock

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