Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Virtual Career Fairs: What They Are, and Why They Matter

In-person career fairs have been conspicuous by their absence in the last year. The coronavirus pandemic has seen to that. But that doesn’t mean hiring has stopped. Indeed The Harvard Business Review notes that, while some jobs have been hit by the pandemic, other roles have emerged.

So, how do you find the people you need during uncertain times? If you were relying on local or regional career fairs to meet potential candidates, virtual events offer a socially-distanced, cost-effective, and efficient alternative.

What Are Virtual Career Fairs?

Virtual career fairs are the perfect solution for employers to find the right talent while observing social distancing considerations, mask requirements, and quarantine orders.

As a result, they have moved from being considered ‘next-gen’ events to being more mainstream. No surprise, as they save time, money, and energy for businesses and participants.

Everyone still provides all the vital information and learns what they need to without disrupting their respective workflows. In 2021, virtual career fairs have become an essential tool in the hiring process.

Are Virtual Career Fairs Good Talent Sourcing Channels?

Now more than ever before, virtual career fairs offer you a low-cost, low-risk way of connecting with position-specific talent.

In 2016, the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) reported the high regard employers held for online job fairs, with 99.4 percent of respondents indicating they already participated in such recruiting strategies with great success. Many reported that they were more effective than social media hiring campaigns.

These events give you a chance to extend invitations for talent to share their information and answer a few essential questions in hopes of setting up an interview with you. You can then review the candidate’s submission materials and answers to your questions and decide whether you want to offer them an interview.

It’s an excellent way to fast-track the candidate search process and an efficient first step in an online recruitment process.

Will Virtual Hiring Events Remain a Modern Sourcing Strategy Post-COVID-19?

It’s important for you to know how much your organization should invest in virtual hiring events. Are they valid long-range sourcing channels or just temporary Band-Aids during ongoing coronavirus concerns? 

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is convinced that online hiring fairs are here to stay. Small- and mid-sized companies that have invested in this technology are likely to keep these practices in place to reach online candidates in the future.

Are Online Hiring Fairs Suitable for All Industries?

It’s important to know whether a virtual career fair will work to attract the right talent to your business before making any commitments. In short, the answer is yes. Any business committed to finding the right candidates can benefit from virtual career fairs.

Here are a few strategies you can use to attract the right talent to your company:

  • Streamline your engagement process to identify promising candidates early by creating filters, including qualifications, requirements, education, and work experience.
  • Brush up your branding to ensure that your candidates understand your business, as far as what you do, what your mission is, and if they can envision themselves working for you.
  • Ask questions anticipating specific answers that offer insights about the candidate and how well they might fit into your corporate culture

Do You Need Help Navigating the Virtual Career Fair Environment?

If you need more ideas and insights about participating in online career events to source the best talent, we are here and would love to help! Our team can share some insights to determine whether this online sourcing channel is right for your business.

About the Author

Kelly Peters is JazzHR’s Communications and Content Manager. Her passion for storytelling and experience in Customer Success is reflected in the thought-leadership content she produces for growing businesses. Kelly honed her communication skills working with brands like NBCUniversal and Dicks Sporting Goods.

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