5 Reasons Why Your Company Needs To Be Active At Career Fairs

Career fairs have been an integral part of the recruitment process for almost a century, with crude versions of the idea dating back even more. Organizations are dynamic entities with an inevitable migration of talent to and from the company with a heavy bias on one over the other as per the company’s financial health. It is not a question of whether the companies will need to acquire new talent, nor is it a question of whether there is going to be talent waiting to be matched up with the right companies; they are an existential fact — the question truly boils down to the way the interaction is carried out between them. Before the digital age, the interactions were more of a rudimentary nature where in companies used to go to gatherings, advertise their needs and get approached by the interested job seekers. The basic approach remains the same till date, with technology heavily augmenting and streamlining the process without replacing the most essential element — physical face-to-face interaction.

As a matter of fact, career fairs are very highly anticipated by job seekers. According to a study, 84 percent of job seekers stated that career fairs were the highlight of their job search process, getting more interest and leads than by applying online. From the networking perspective alone the event is a goldmine of amazing connections waiting to happen. There are fairs organized by professional associations and by educational institutions where the ROI generated for the participating companies is very high and about 72% -76% of vacancies find satisfactory sized pools of applicants.

You would be surprised to know how many companies get acquainted with some of their best employees via career fairs. There are tons of benefits that one can receive from participating in a career fair, the top 5 reasons why your company should seriously consider participating in one are laid out as follows.

1. Get a glimpse at the changing workforce psyche

The crowd at the career fair is a clear reflection of the diversity of employees working at different companies, be it in terms of talent or attitude. The changing demands of the millennials, their expectations from the company culture and environment, can be clearly captured whilst interacting with them directly. The lessons learnt hold very important points that a company needs to incorporate in their culture to retain the next generation of talent. The companies who fail to adjust in terms of culture are often left behind as the attrition rate exceeds the sustenance level for healthy growth of the company. Many tech giants incorporate the changing needs of the workforce and mold the culture to not only retain the existing talent but to attract even more. That’s how the whole ‘hip’ startup culture has gained much popularity even in mid to large sized companies.

2. Give a Sneak Peek of the Company

The company’s culture works like a charm when you want to attract the right people for the jobs. For instance, Tech people want a lot of freedom in their work, a place that garners creativity, where ideas are cherished and where cross-pollination of ideas takes place irrespective of the stature of people in the company — you show exactly this and you would have gained valuable leads which may or may not materialize right at that moment. Sometimes, when people are thinking of changing jobs they draw from their past experiences the kind of interactions they had with different companies and use them during their job search process. You can put up amazing videos of the culture on LinkedIn but it’s a whole different touch of authenticity that job seekers get when talking face to face with people working in the company.

3. Advertise your Brand, Increase Awareness

Ask a random person about the number of companies they are acquainted with, or at least have some idea of what those companies do. They will tell you 40–50 odd names, and on bugging them some more you will find out that they hardly know what 25–30 of those companies do. Remember that they are all potential employees, if not for your company then for the next, but knowing what you do, what your product offerings are and what you are working on lead to more awareness and potentially more sales leads in the future, from companies that you haven’t been able to reach out yet. Social media platforms do play a very important role in today’s recruitment as we have mentioned in our prior post, however the advertising there doesn’t stick as well as the one at a career fair.

4. Do an initial screen in a jiffy

The first step of any recruitment process upon receiving the applications is screening them based on various parameters and expectations. The ones that remain need to go through a phone screen, followed by the “real” recruitment rounds (Technical and HR). Going through the screening rounds takes a lot of time, as much as 38% of the overall recruitment time on an average. The time for which the position remains vacant is a loss for the company, and you can minimize that by opening a booth at the career fair. How? Let me walk you through it. At your booth you can strategically place the major requirements for the positions on the boards, so most of the candidates approaching have the idea of requirements in mind. Now, while spending a couple of minutes with an interested job seeker or a group of seekers you quickly catch up on who can be the most suitable person for the position, you make some notes on their resumes and put it in the pile. You are doing screening as you go, so the time lag in scheduling an interview can only be about a couple of hours (which generally is) and Voila! You just saved an awful lot of time already!

5. Get the right candidates fast

Majority of the time spent in the initial phase of recruiting for a vacancy is wasted on going through the clutter created by the humungous pile of received applications. One major benefit of the career fair is that all candidates stopping by your booth are active job seekers, and are not just considering going for a new job. Also, based on the type of career fair you are at, you know exactly what kind of applications you are going to receive. You can gauge the level of interest in the position with a brief conversation, which saves a lot of time especially in the later stages when the job seeker might not be interested in the extended offer and it takes even more time to get another candidate to extend the offer to.

Here’s a bonus point for reading this far…

6. Network and meet with other companies!!

There is a lot to learn when like-minded people get together, and the situation is no different at a career fair. You are in the company of a lot of recruiters who have come at the fair with the same set of objectives — to advertise and to recruit. Looking at lots of innovative approaches that other recruiters are taking, you can imbibe the effective ones and grow more efficient. You can pick up trends like bringing alumni of the same university at that university’s career fair, bringing engineers from the teams that are recruiting to build up the hype and answer all kinds of job-related questions that the job seekers might have.

The return on investment from attending the career fair manifests in more ways than one, and thus it is essential you understand what you are missing on if you are thinking of not going this time. The impressions you create here are way more deep-seated in the minds of tomorrow’s employees than any social media campaigns could ever create. You never know, these job seekers may turn out to be potential customers in the future, so suit up and go to that upcoming career fair!

We at Hirebase understand the importance of different elements that make up the recruitment industry thrive, and with your best interests in mind we are creating a product that will greatly augment the hiring and job search needs of the workforce. Putting together small pieces of innovations and wisdom, we hope to make your recruitment experience much better. So visit our website and subscribe to get notified on the launch of www.hirebase.io !!!