// How to stand out in a career fair
by Linjie, 20th November 2015
Career fairs provide graduates with an opportunity to meet and network with employers. This is a time to impress them and learn more about the company. If they really like you, some companies will even fast-track you through their application process.
Are you a University student seeking for an internship or graduate job? If yes, you have probably been to your University job fair or any job fairs in the UK. Have you ever wondered how to stand out during the career fair, in the midst of hundreds (or thousands) of people? You can also try a variety of UK job search websites to find out more.
# Research about the company
Find out about the background of the company and the industry that it operates in. For example, you are looking to join Audit, you can find out news about the accountancy industry by referring to BBC news or the Financial Times. If you are thinking about joining a particular company, it is also useful to read about the company’s latest news and understand what kind service they provide.
# Research about the role
In terms of the role, find out about responsibilities that comes with the position. Again, using Audit as an example. It means finding out what does an auditor do and how do they provide service to customers. In addition, if the role needs specific qualification, it is also crucial to research about the type of qualification and understand how the qualification works. Auditors would normally get an ACA / ACCA qualification, so it is worth researching about that.
# Smile and Handshake
Approach the recruiter with a smile and firm handshake. Introduce yourself and ask for their name and role. While talking to them, try to smile and demonstrate that you are happy talking to them. Spend some time building connection with them and show your interest in the company.
# Ask questions
This can show that you are keen to learn about the company and the position. If you want to impress the recruiter, try not to ask questions that are listed on the company’s FAQ. From your research, you will be able to formulate questions which demonstrate your interest in the company. For instance, ‘I heard about the new X regulation in the Y industry. I am wondering how it is going to affect your company/department.’ If not, you can always try a more general question such as ‘What is your organisation’s working culture?’
# Dress professionally
For a man, wear a suit with an ironed shirt. As for girls, try going for knee length skirts/pants and a blazer. Make sure that your clothing are comfortable and look professional at the same time. Remember that first impression is very important. Imagine recruiters as being your customers, they would not want someone dress in jeans and flip flops auditing their company’s financial account. It is about demonstrating credibility and looking professional at the workplace.