Virtual career fairs: How to network and connect with potential employers

Learn how to network successfully, ace interviews, and land your next job.

An individual sits at a laptop with headphones on

What comes to mind when you think of a career fair? A noisy conference hall? Long lines? Not anymore. Career fairs are going virtual, connecting candidates to a universe of opportunity without taking big chunks of time away from work or study.

Below, learn how to ace your next virtual career fair and land your next great job.

How does a virtual career fair work?

Like in-person career fairs, virtual career fairs let job seekers and employers meet and discuss opportunities - they just happen online. And in 2022, there's a virtual career fair to suit everyone, from students to late-career professionals. Participants are usually pre-vetted, so you won't waste time interviewing for the wrong kinds of jobs or competing for attention with many unqualified applicants. Expect a mix of virtual information sessions (usually around 30 minutes of watching, listening, and Q&A) and pre-scheduled recruiter 1:1s (usually about 10 minutes).

How should I prepare for a virtual career fair?

Virtual career fairs are great opportunity for meeting lots of potential employers in a short space of time. But if you aren’t prepared, you’ll be wasting your time. Here’s how to get ready:

Get in quick

Spots at the best virtual job fairs are limited, so sign up early for the one-on-ones and group sessions you want to attend. Make sure you’ve uploaded your resume, completed your profile, and made it visible to employers. Do this as early on as you can - employers search in advance.


Research the attending companies and open jobs and prioritize meeting your top targets. Aim for a balance between 'speed dating' as many employers as possible while avoiding back-to-back interviews.

Practice your pitch

Rehearse a 20-to-30-second summary of who you are, what you do, and why you’re different. Practice asking questions. This shows interest and helps you connect with potential employers.

Prepare cheat sheets

Use the virtual setting to your advantage. Nobody can see what you have in front of you during virtual job fairs, so write prompts and questions on post-it notes to guide your conversations.

Dress to impress

You might be joining from home, but professional attire is vital when attending online recruitment events. Dress smartly and avoid busily patterned clothes, which can be distracting on camera.

Set the scene

Don't let background clutter upstage your digital interview performance. Set yourself up against a tidy, well-lit backdrop. Elevate your device to be eye-level with the camera, smile, and sit straight.

Test the platform, and your gear

Log in ahead of time to make sure everything's working. Test your audio, turn off notifications and pop-ups, and ensure your computer is fully charged.

How can I make myself stand out at a virtual career fair?

Recruiters talk to hundreds of candidates, but they remember the ones who came across as genuine. For a successful digital interview, answer questions honestly; don’t over-sell your skills. Finding a common connection with the recruiter is a great conversation starter, so check out their LinkedIn profile in advance. Perhaps you went to the same college or interned at the same company? Don't force it, though. And avoid standing out for the wrong reasons. Never jostle for attention with other candidates or hog recruiters’ time. Also, don’t forget to follow up with a thank-you note within 12 hours, max. (Recruiters expect this, trust us!) Briefly reiterate your interest and why you are a good fit. Ideally include a detail from your conversation to jog their memory.

Want more help with finding your next job? We have hundreds of job seeker resources, including tips and tricks for acing virtual interviews and attending in-person job fairs.

And why not call or stop in to see us at one of our 400 locations across the US?

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