With the SECC Graduate Careers fair upon us today and tomorrow, it is probably worth taking a look at our leaflet on ‘Getting the most out of a Careers Fair’.
This leaflet gives you loads of good tips on how to approach a careers fair.
If you are going to attend , you’ll get a lot more out of it if you recognise that you may not be able to talk to someone who can give you detailed info on the specific job you’re interested in. You’re much more likely to get to talk to a recent graduate who will tell you to “look on the website” for the specific vacancies. So what can you get out of them? Easy! You get to figure out whether you would want to work for an organisation by the way it treats its recent recruits (and with a bit of luck, the new grauates will be unguarded enough to tell you the truth about what it’s really like at work).
I’d suggest asking about:
- What training did they get/do they offer?
- How do they get measured? (If you find out what the organisation values in its employees, could you realistically expect to deliver the results which will result in fast promotion or increased pay?)
- Do they know any postgraduates working for the organisation, & what jobs are they doing?
- What do they think is different about their organisation compared to their competitors
It’s all good material for the bit in the covering letter or during interview on “Why do you want to work for us?”. It’s so much more impressive to say “when I was talking to your R&D Manager …”, rather than “well, it says on your website …”, which every other candidate will have read.
And a final tip – if you get there earlier, you’re more likely to get a reasonable amount of time with exhibitors, you will get to talk to them before they get into their “fixed patter” mode (where they’re so tired, they just reel off the same thing to everyone they see) , and, of course, you should get the pick of the freebies!!
There is also a Virtual Careers Fair for Greater China and South East Asia coming up on 24th to 28th October where you can ‘chat’ to employers from the comfort of your arm chair with your favourite mug full of hot chocolate -no need to brave the flooded roads of Scotland to visit employers!