During virtual career fairs, recruiters have a unique opportunity to interact with multiple candidates at the same time.
By design, these online events help talent acquisition teams save money and get better results, among other benefits. Recruiters can get even more mileage out of virtual career fairs by following a few best practices. These strategies will help recruiters improve their results and make better hires.
#1 Prepare, prepare, prepare
As you count down to your upcoming virtual career fair, take some time to get organized. Think about the types of candidates you’ll be interacting with, and draft some notes or a script to introduce yourself, the job, and your organization. Some platforms have a feature, like Brazen’s Snippets, allowing you to preload common responses so you can save time during your virtual career fair conversations. For example, if you know your candidates frequently ask about relocation benefits, you might preload the tool to have your answer on relocation benefits ready to go. It’s also smart to spend some time collecting any resources or links you might need to refer to in order to answer questions from candidates. Having this information at your fingertips will make it easier to focus on connecting with candidates and engaging in natural conversations.
Once you have your scripts and resources outlined, meet with the recruiters and hiring managers who will participate in the virtual career fair. Share your scripts, resources, and other recruiting best practices and educate each person who will interact with candidates on the virtual career fair platform. Getting everyone on the same page will help ensure a consistent candidate experience, which translates into better results.
#2 Use a personal touch to make a good first impression
Before your virtual career fair, send a personal note to candidates. Personalized communication demonstrates that you care, sets your organization apart from the competition, and can actually increase attendance rates. Use the note to let candidates know you’re genuinely looking forward to meeting them in the virtual career fair platform.
#3 Script your screening questions
Structuring conversations with candidates is one way to avoid implicit bias and create a consistent candidate experience. Create a script for screening questions to ensure candidates are treated equally. Some virtual career fair platforms have a feature, like Brazen’s SmartQueue, allowing recruiters to preload screening questions that all candidates must answer before entering a live chat. Plus, a feature like this will prioritize your conversations so that your recruiters are talking to those who answer these preloaded questions more favorably.
#4 Be your (authentic) self
Without trying too hard, be friendly and upbeat in candidate interactions. This helps strengthen your employer brand and supports a positive candidate experience. Above all, remember that candidates are not joining these virtual career fairs because they want to chat with a robot or a human communicating like an automaton. So be human. This approach will help you capture that candidate over your competition.
#5 Think about the mobile users
Most recruiters love to get chatty with candidates. It’s a natural part of getting to know someone. During virtual career fairs, more than half of candidates typically participate via mobile connection, so lengthy messages aren’t very convenient. It’s best to keep your responses succinct and to the point so that all candidates you engage with can read and respond quickly, regardless of what type of device they are using.
#6 Tell candidates about the next steps
When candidates enter a virtual career fair, they are probably already wondering how long it will be before they find out whether they made the cut. More than half (53 percent) of job seekers want more information about expectations during the recruiting process and a virtual career fair is a great place to start giving feedback. You can rate candidates right in a virtual career fair platform, so don’t be shy about communicating a candidate’s standing before they leave the virtual career fair. For candidates moving forward, set expectations for future communication and next steps.
Turning virtual connections into real relationships
Using these best practices can help recruiters maximize the benefits of virtual career fairs. By investing just a little time and thought before the event, recruiters can elevate the quality of their conversations and make even more connections with quality candidates. Virtual career fairs allow you to save money and resources on your talent acquisition efforts, and approaching these events with the strategies outlined in this article take the results to the next level. The net result is better hires for your organization, perhaps the best benefit of all.
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