Employers at risk of not filling thousands of jobs this spring due to Coronavirus

Mar 19, 2020 - Joe Matar

March is here which means the weather is warming, the flowers are blooming, and spring is in the air.

For most colleges, universities, and employers spring also means it’s time for the spring hiring frenzy. And this hiring frenzy traditionally takes place on campuses across the country in what is known as the in person career fair.

Each year, tens of thousands of students dust off their professional attire, drag a comb through their hair, and head down to the student career fair with a freshly printed resume and business card in hand, ready to talk to dozens of employers eager to hire that next great student. 

But this year is not like most years. This year, the nation and the world is facing a health-risk unlike any other we’ve seen in decades: the COVID-19 or more commonly known as the Coronavirus.

And officials are warning that it is unsafe to travel to events where you’ll be interacting with a large number of people. [READ: Stay away from in person career fairs!].

We’ve already seen major conferences cancel their in person events and schools and universities are doing the same with their in person career fairs, leaving thousands of students without access to employers.

Add to the fact that most major employers are suspending travel including campus visits, and we are left with a situation where employers are at risk of not being able to fill tens of thousands of roles that they traditionally rely upon from their university hiring efforts. 

So colleges, universities and employers alike are looking for alternatives.

Virtual Career Fairs

Cue: virtual career fairs.

A solution that has been on the market for many years, virtual career fairs or virtual hiring events may just be the solution that saves the day and ensures employers don’t miss out on hiring for thousands of roles.

Virtual career fairs are obviously safer than in person career fairs but they are also more effective. According to Dr. John Sullivan, an expert in recruiting, in person career fairs are actually one of the most ineffective hiring solutions. In person career fairs can be expensive due to travel, time away from work, and other resources you have to commit for marketing and swag. Plus, because of the high volume of applicants, in person fairs can put a strain on your hiring process, limiting your ability to find the right candidate in the stack.

Virtual career fairs, on the other hand, require no travel and set up is easy. Recruiting teams can log in to a virtual career fair from the office or their couch at home.

Plus, unlike during an in person career fair, recruiters can chat with multiple candidates at once, making the process much more efficient.

It’s an easy sell with the students as well. Since most Millennials and all Gen Zers grew up with digital communication apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, chatting during a virtual career fair is second nature (and for many, probably preferable than meeting employers in person).

Our company, Brazen, the world’s #1 virtual career fair platform, has seen skyrocketing demand for our platform in just the last couple weeks. Employers and universities alike are reaching out indicating that they’ve already cancelled their in person events and want to take them online.

Fortunately, we have hundreds of clients that are already using virtual career fairs for all types of hiring beyond just campus recruiting. 

Yes, it’s important for employers to fill critical jobs. Yes, it’s important for students to find their next career. But it’s even more important that we do it safely and without the health risks so prevalent today. Be safe.

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