What to Expect during a Virtual Hiring Event
Virtual job fairs are similar to in-person events. There are employer “booths” you can visit to learn more about the company and obtain information about available jobs. In a virtual event, though, you browse virtual booths and each will contain links to information about the company and the available jobs.
Engaging with employers in a virtual event is similar to online discussion posts. In Workforce Solutions’ virtual hiring platform, Virtual Premiere, each employer’s virtual booth has its own “chat room,” and you choose if you want to enter to engage in a discussion. When you enter, the employer receives a notification and a representative will greet you via the chat function.
Employers want event participants to be engaging, so you should expect to be ready to reach out to employers of jobs you’re interested in. This is your opportunity to introduce yourself to the attending recruiter/hiring manager and ask about available jobs, discuss your experiences and qualifications, and ask other questions relevant to the job(s) you’re most interested in.
Update & Upload Your Resume
Resumes are not required to attend the event, but they are highly encouraged.
Resumes help employers make hiring decisions and help you get your first interview. It allows you to display your top skills, qualities and experience, as well as serves as a valuable resource for recruiters to quickly learn more about you. Click the image on the left to view how to upload your resume to your Premiere Virtual account.
Don’t have a resume? There are many free online resume builders you can use to help you quickly create your resume. Here are some of our top suggestions based on ease of use and understanding:
- Rocket Resume promotes getting you hired faster and creating your resume in 10 minutes.
- Resume Now promotes creating your resume in 5 easy steps, fast and easy.
- ResumeGenius promotes creating your resume in 15 minutes.
- Resume.com promotes getting a resume template based on what real employers want to see.
If you have a WorkinTexas.com account, you can log in and build a resume with the WorkinTexas Resume Builder Feature. Our Workforce Solutions staff can provide additional assistance to you if needed. Contact us at 254-296-5260, email@example.com, or chat with us live Monday through Friday 8 am to 5 pm by clicking the chat icon in the bottom right corner of your screen.
Research Employers & Job Vacancies First
Once you enter the event, it would be a great idea to take a look at the participating employers and make a short list of the ones you would be most interested in working for. Then take about 30 minutes to an hour to enter the virtual booths of each of the employers on your list, review the company information provided, and take notes about available jobs and other information about the company that is important to you.
It’s easy to find the information you need. Each virtual booth contains links to the company’s bio, website, social media accounts and other important information. All available jobs are also listed in the “Job Vacancies” section of the company’s virtual booth. Be sure to write down the titles of the jobs you’re interested in so you can ask relevant questions during your conversations with recruiters.
It’s important for you to spend a little time learning about companies and available jobs prior to making contact with recruiters. It will show recruiters you are prepared and will help you stand out among the competition. The event is 3 hours long, and recruiters will be available during the entire event. So don’t worry about first taking some time to do your homework!
Download the Notes Resource below. Print several copies so you can fill out one for each company booth you visit.
Chat with Employers during the Virtual Hiring Event
To begin chatting with a recruiter/hiring manager, click the ‘Chat Now’ button in the employer’s virtual booth. The employer will receive a notification and the recruiter will greet you.
Note: If you don’t receive an immediate response, the recruiter may be engaged in another conversation. Feel free to leave that booth and browse other company booths while you wait. You will receive a chat notification when the representative responds, no matter where you are in the virtual event.
Here are some tips for beginning a chat with a recruiter:
- Have your company and job vacancies notes and pen and paper ready before reaching out to the recruiter. Use the notes you made when researching employers and job vacancies in front of you. Have pen and paper handy, too, so you can take additional notes during your conversations with recruiters.
- Click the “Apply for Job” button within the Job Details box of a Job Vacancy. Note: Doing this does not automatically submit a job application for you or take you to an external application site. It notifies the recruiter in real time that you’re interested in the job. Your first and last name and a link to view your resume (if you uploaded one to your account) are immediately sent to the recruiter, notifying them of your interest in the job. This allows them to instantly review your resume and reach out to you via chat during the event, as well as adds you to their list of interested candidates that they can export after the event.
- Introduce yourself and provide your name and the title of the job(s) you’re interested in when you begin chatting with a recruiter. When reviewing the employer’s job vacancies, make notes of the job titles and other general job information so you can ask the recruiter specifically about the job(s) you’re interested in. Example introductory sentence: Hi, my name is Tom. I’m interested in X position at your company. Do you have some time to chat with me? or Hi, my name is Maria, and I believe I might be a good fit for the X position at your company. Do you have time to discuss it with me?
- Ask relevant questions about the company and job(s) you’re interested in. Don’t ask questions just to ask questions. You should ask questions that are specific to the company and the job positions you’re interested in. Make a list of 5 questions you want to ask when reviewing job vacancies. You can make simple modifications to your 5 core questions based on the employers and job vacancies on your short list. See Relevant Questions section below.
- Before leaving the chat, ask the recruiter for their first and last name, title, email address and phone number. This will allow you to reference and/or contact them after the event and later in the application process. Also be sure to ask them what next steps are for applying for the job and if you can contact them after the event if you have any more questions (see Relevant Questions) section below). You will also use this information to send a thank you note or email after the event.
Relevant Questions to Ask Recruiters during the Event
You can easily stand out among the competition at a virtual hiring fair by being prepared and actively engaging with recruiters and hiring managers through the platform’s chat tool.
Asking relevant questions not only shows you’re truly interested in a company and the position you’re asking about, but it also shows you did your homework. Don’t ask questions just for the sake of asking questions — make sure it is information that you need. Also, try to avoid asking questions that are answered on the company’s web site or other info links provided in their virtual booth. Recruiters know when you haven’t done your homework!
It’s a good practice to have at least 5 questions prepared. After reviewing the background of the companies you’re interested in speaking with during the event, make notes about how you can modify each question for each company.
A couple of tips when preparing questions:
- Open ended questions (starting with How?/What?/Why?) are better to get a dialogue going because you are giving the recruiter a chance to elaborate instead of just responding with ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
- Have a maximum of 5 questions prepared, the rest should follow naturally from the conversation you have (remember that the recruiters may have some questions for you as well).
- Modify each of your 5 questions for each company/job vacancy you’re interested in based on your preliminary research.
- Avoid asking questions that are answered on the company’s web site or other info links provided in their virtual booth.
Asking About Specific Job Vacancies
- Are there specific skills, work experience or educational background that can make me more competitive for the [job title]?
- What are the primary results a person in this [job title] would be expected to achieve?
- What challenges and opportunities are associated with [job title]?
- What percentage of time would be devoted to each of the responsibilities of [job title]?
- Which traits and skills do you look for in applicants for [job title]?
- What is the balance between teamwork and individual work for [job title]?
- What type of shifts would a person in [job title] be expected to work?
Asking About Training & Promotional Opportunities
- Does your company have formal training programs, or do employees receive on-the-job training? Who is eligible?
- What training or education programs, if any, does the company offer employees?
- How can an employee advance within your company?
- What advancement opportunities are available within your company?
Asking About Company Culture & Work Environment
- Can you describe the corporate culture?
- How would you describe the company culture at your office?
Asking About the Application Process
- What do I need to know about the application process?
- What do you recommend I do next to pursue this job and get my foot in the door?
- How long is the application and interview process and what does it consist of?
- How can I improve my chances of receiving a job offer?