For job seekers, the global pandemic has created one change in hiring processes that will arguably be widely welcomed: a removal of the need to attend physical interviews and careers fairs. Virtual job hunting is becoming the new norm and the opportunities it is opening up for professionals are vast. This is especially the case for those looking for international work. The barrier of having to travel – potentially long distance – to attend job fairs or interviews has been removed thanks to the switch to remote working.

And for those professionals who have perhaps been interested in cross-border work, but haven’t been able to commit to an international move, the growth in businesses allowing remote working from your home country has certainly opened up new opportunities. But, how can job seekers ensure they are getting the most out of virtual recruitment?

Here’s our top five virtual job fair networking tips

1. Choose the right ones

As with the more traditional job fairs, it’s important to focus your attention on the most relevant ones. Attending as many as you can will impact your time and is unlikely to deliver the right results and connections. Review which online fairs will connect you with the businesses you want to work with or the recruiters that have the right experience to meet your needs. Sometimes a niche event can provide more meaningful connections, so look beyond some of the usual suspects you would normally attend.

2. Preparation is still key

In an online setting, the initial preparation that you would go through in advance of an event has the potential to get lost. The need to travel to a physical location often acts as a prompt to ensure you have your updated CV to hand, are armed with the exhibitor information and know exactly who you want to speak to first. Attending virtual fairs, however, is much more flexible in terms of your time. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t prepare equally as well. Do your research before the event itself. Look at which companies will be there and plan your time. Book appointments in advance where you can and set yourself targets you want to achieve before the event is up. Which exhibitors must you speak to before you leave, for example? Make sure you do your research in advance of any online discussions with businesses at the fair. Look at their websites and if they’re a recruitment agency, make a note of current vacancies that appeal to you. For any direct hirers that are attending, reviewing their careers site and making a note of what appeals to you most and what vacancies they have at the moment will help you make a good impression while also getting the most out of the fair yourself.

3. Keep it professional

In line with the above advice, ensuring you remain professional as if the event was taking place in a physical location is just as important. Small steps can help keep you in a professional mindset when preparing for and attending any virtual job fairs. Dressing for the occasion, for example, is advisable. While this is particularly important if you’re planning to use video tools at the event, it will also help job seekers adapt in an online environment.

4. Join the conversation online

In a physical networking setting, you have the added benefit that the connections you make can ‘put a face to the name’ as they have met you in person. Depending on the software that is being used at the virtual job fair, you might be able to connect over video, but making a lasting impression over video is more challenging. However there are ways to counter-act this. Joining the conversation on social media, for example, can really help you stand out. Sharing posts online ahead of the event using any relevant hashtags or tagging in any exhibitors you’re looking forward to meeting will help you connect with the right people on the day. Monitor posts from others attending, and sharing or liking those from people you’ve connected with will help keep you front of mind for potential new career opportunities.

5. Follow up

Again, in a similar vein to the traditional job fair, following up after the virtual event is key. A quick note to say it was great to meet them or a connection online through LinkedIn will be beneficial to ensure you’re connecting with the right recruiters and building a longer-term relationship with them. Remember, even if there isn’t a role available that suits you right now, there may be one in the future. So, connecting and following up after a virtual job fair is a vital tip for those looking to build a network that provides opportunities for the future.

Our German, Dutch & Nordic Virtual Jobs Fair

Here at Top Language Jobs, we’re supporting employers, recruiters and job seekers throughout the pandemic to ensure they can continue to connect and network across the globe. In fact, in November we will be hosting a virtual jobs fair for German, Dutch and Nordic speakers looking for work in a variety of sectors. We know that there’s a high demand for these individuals across Europe at the moment and by hosting this event we will be bringing together candidates and employers in a safe, online environment. It will provide a great opportunity for anyone speaking these specific languages and is looking for a career move or open to discussing new opportunities.

Attendees will be able to virtually meet with recruiters from leading international companies, apply for positions and get themselves shortlisted for pre-interview stages. Your profile will be matched with available jobs, and professionals will be on hand to give you advice on your CV and all other aspects to help you find your perfect role.

So, what are you waiting for? Sign up for the event today!

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