HOW TO PREPARE FOR A JOB FAIR:
Be sure to review the list of participants, and choose the top 5 or so that you really want to talk to. And then do some research ahead of time. Look those companies up online, and learn a little about them. Showing a hiring manager that you’ve done some homework makes a great first impression.
The participants that are registered for the Dar Al-Hijrah job fair include Fairfax County Schools and Police, Target, Dulles and Reagan National Airports, just to name a few.
Some companies are more popular than others and their tables may be more crowded. Be patient, and when you do get your chance to talk with someone, be respectful of those waiting behind you. Remember, this isn’t the interview. You’re just trying to make an introduction, handoff your resume, and leave them wanting more.
It’s OK to ask questions, like…
What kinds of entry level jobs are there for someone with my background?
What kind of training program do you offer?
Can you describe your selection process?
Take notes. Job fairs can be busy and move quickly. You’re meeting a lot of people, and creating a lot of opportunities. So jot down any people or action items you want to follow up with.
And about that resume –
Make sure you have someone review your resume BEFORE you come. Have them check for structure, style and accuracy. If your resume has typos or misspellings, employers won’t even give you a chance.
Be sure to bring several copies of your resume, because you’ll be leaving a copy with every person you talk with.
We’re offering free resume checks in the Social Services office the week before the job fair. On March 4th, 5th and 6th, you can bring your resume in to the Social Services office from 12-3 for a review, and get 10 free copies to take with you.
Dress the part –
You should dress for the job you want. Your clothes should be neat, clean and professional. And hygiene matters too. Be sure your hair is combed, you’re neatly shaved and your breath is fresh.
You can find professional attire in our thrift store or Career Closet for Sisters.
Adults only –
Job fairs are professional events for adults. They are not a place for kids. But no worries…we will provide free child care in the room adjacent to the DAH job fair on March 12th.
Be sure to collect a card from everyone you speak with. And at the end of the day, or by the next day at the latest, send an email to each person you spoke with to thank them for their time. Make it brief and be polite. Let them know you’re interested in continuing the conversation, and attach another copy of your resume.
Be sure to double check your spelling and accuracy.