By: Ryan Ching

A career fair can be a recruiter’s dreamland or worst nightmare. You’re surrounded by top talent but your competition is out to poach them from your pipeline. In order to recruit the best of the best and stand out from your competition be sure to utilize these four easy tips.

1. Catch Their Attention

Don’t be afraid to get creative, especially if you’re recruiting for a creative minded position. Make sure that your company’s booth stands out with colorful graphics and intriguing copy. If your booth looks like it was made by a middle school student for the science fair it’ll be hard to catch the eye of your ideal candidate. Be sure to convey your brand’s values and employee value proposition clearly at your booth in order to give a sense of your company culture. Another way to attract people to your booth is to have small giveaways such as pens, sunglasses or other creatively branded items. While these may cost a bit of money, it can attract talent to your booth and, at the very least, increase your brand recognition around the fair.

                               MichaelScottSwag

2. Be Genuine and Conversational

Don’t try and sell your company too hard to a prospective employee. Don’t get me wrong, you want to explain why your company is a great place to work and why they should choose you but do it in a conversational manner. If you’re giving top talent a sales pitch, odds are that they can see through the smoke and mirrors and may be turned off by the idea of a hard sell. It can also raise questions about why you are working so hard to sell your company experience. Let the conversation flow naturally and see if they’re a good fit at the end.

3. Respect Your Candidates

It’s important to treat prospective employees with the respect that they deserve and remain professional at all times. If a candidate fails to meet your expectations for the position, simply thank them for their time and tell them in a polite manner that they do not meet the requirements for the position. If you need to get the person to stop talking in order to meet with another potential employee, let them know that it was great talking to them but out of respect for others they must move on to the next person. Remember to be professional and respectful because after all you are representing your company and potential employees can spread the word quickly if they feel they were mistreated.

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4. Make a Lasting Impression

As a recruiter you need to have an outgoing personality at career fairs to attract top talent. For example, I had a recruiter from a major company that simply stared me down as I attempted to talk to him and would not answer any questions that I had. Not only was this awkward in the moment, but it also killed my interest in the company. Prospective employees are trying to make a good first impression to you but at the same time they’re also judging the company based on your interaction with them. Be excited about your company and talk about what makes it special to you to give recruits something to remember when they leave the fair.

Next time you attend a career fair use these tips to lure top talent away from your competitors and build your talent pipeline. If there are any tips that we missed be sure to let us know at our Facebook or Twitter page!