Why Virtual Job Fairs Are Not a Thing of the Past

Happy student studying and learning taking notes with a digital tablet in a coffee shop.
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Virtual job fairs weren’t born of necessity two years ago; they were around long before any notion of a global pandemic. Even as we continue to normalize our work back to pre-COVID times, informing and recruiting virtually has its advantages over in-person events.

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A virtual job fair, despite being digital, is still an event and it should be treated as such. If done right, virtual events can create a more personal experience and can be just as effective at creating meaningful connections between job hunters and employers as those in person. Contrary to “everything getting back to normal,” virtual job fairs are not a thing of the past, they are the new normal.

Here are some reasons why virtual job fairs will continue to flourish in today’s job marketplace and the foreseeable future.

They’re Accessible

One of the biggest attractions to virtual job fairs is that they are open to (virtually) everyone. Geography as an obstacle to attendance has been eliminated so companies and talent can be sought outside of one’s immediate region.

The digital medium provides an equal opportunity to those with disabilities, opens participation for job seekers from around the world, and gives a safe place for those who have suffer from anxiety in traditional job fair settings. Making people feel welcome and secure can only attract better candidates to your company.

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They’re Attractive

There is no attendance cap or capacity maximum to virtual job fairs, so the potential to attract a greater number of participants and potential hires is limitless.

Virtual fairs also tend to attract higher quality candidates because employers can target advertising and invitation lists to specific potential candidate pools, making the selection process even more rewarding. Rather than walking around aimlessly and stumbling upon your booth, people attending virtual job fairs are there for a reason and they must register, which shows interest right away.

They’re Engaging

Many people miss the face-to-face interaction provided by in-person job fairs, but when held virtually, connecting with potential candidates and employers can be just as satisfying, if not more. Making it a major part of an employer’s recruiting process, candidates will be more engaged throughout the virtual job fair and pre- and post-fair connections will keep candidates engaged with the company longer.

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Through one-on-one breakout sessions, text-based chat and audio or video-only chat interview options, virtual job fairs grant participants a personalized experience. Not only do candidates feel they are getting “special attention,” but it helps them get the information they want and in their own way.

They’re Cheap  

Having no overhead means you can save money on a host of logistical considerations that come with substantial price tags. Producing a virtual job fair will require finding a platform to host it and spending the requisite sum on digital promotion, plus any incidental costs that arise.

However, incurring no travel costs, having no venue rental, no swag, fewer staff required, no refreshments, no physical promotional material, plus a dozen more expenses — there is no comparison in the money saved by offering a job fair virtually than in person.

They’re Efficient

The format of virtual job fairs connects recruiters to more candidates in a shorter amount of time. And by attracting higher quality candidates, virtual job fairs help recruiters speed up the screening process and move top candidates to the next step level more quickly than in-person events and traditional phone screening methods.

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There are plenty of ways to measure results of a virtual job fair as well. Tallying successes and failures on specific candidate and recruitment goals will set the focus of future virtual job fairs in good stead. 

They’re Brand Boosters

By its very nature, the internet enables fast exchange of information and ideas. Word of mouth is still important but digitally, it can make or break a company’s reputation in a matter of clicks. The simple act of hosting virtual job fairs can strengthen a brand by showing candidates what a company stands for. For example, what an organization wants to achieve in the long run, whether it empowers its employees or if it is ethically responsible or technologically innovative.  

Promotion is a different game virtually but posting positive virtual job fair hype through social media and paid advertising also improves brand name recognition and helps an organization highlight its company culture. It’s easy to build social capital for a brand if participants have nothing but great things to say about a well-organized and executed virtual job fair.

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About the Author

David Nadelle is a freelance editor and writer based in Ottawa, Canada. After working in the energy industry for 18 years, he decided to change careers in 2016 and concentrate full-time on all aspects of writing. He recently completed a technical communication diploma and holds previous university degrees in journalism, sociology and criminology. David has covered a wide variety of financial and lifestyle topics for numerous publications and has experience copywriting for the retail industry.

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