/ Asked by Tanya
How do recruiters determine which students are worth pursuing from a 3-minute conversation at a career fair?
Answered by Cassie, Hiring Expert at The Hershey Company, on Thursday, September 24, 2015
One thing that stands out for me at career fair is a student who is prepared, knows what they are looking for, and knows a little about the company. When a student comes to me and takes ownership of the conversation rather than asking… “What jobs does your company have?” or expects me to start the conversation, I am much more likely to be interested in that student. Have your 2 minute elevator speech prepared so you can be clear and concise when talking recruiters at the career fair. Let them know your major, any past experiences, and how those relate to the career you are looking for rather than letting them just tell you about the company. If your career goals match the opportunities we have available, you are more likely to get an interview. You can always look at the company website prior to the interview to know what jobs are available and if those match your career goals.
Answered by Nell, Hiring Expert at Pitney Bowes, on Friday, September 25, 2015
It seems crazy that recruiters can make these decisions so quickly, but they can! The recruiter usually has a really good understanding of their company and the specific business unit that they support. I would break it down into 2 major categories: Technical skills and Cultural fit. If a recruiter can clearly see that an applicant falls into the right category in both of these areas then they are going to move that applicant forward. However, there are many instances that they are collecting resumes for use at a later date and may not know what they are looking for. I know firsthand how exhausting those events can be. My advice to you is to never take it personally if you don’t make it through and to come up to each table with energy and gratefulness. Those are the traits the go a very long way!
Best wishes!
-Nell
Answered by Stephanie, Hiring Expert at AT&T Inc., on Tuesday, September 29, 2015
That’s a great question! Studies show that as little as 7% of verbal communication actually plays a role in first impressions, so it’s not all about the conversation, but how you present yourself in that short period of time you have to chat. Employers want to see that you can represent yourself properly before choosing to pursue you – after all, you’re going to potentially be representing their company.

How are you dressed and are you wearing the right accessories? Those trendy skinny jeans and big jewelry will send the wrong impression, so do yourself a favor and choose classy over trendy to set the right tone. Also, don’t forget how crucial a prepared and well-rehearsed 30 second elevator pitch can be to sell yourself right off the bat. If you speak confidently and passionately about your experience, successes and goals, then you’re giving the recruiter a reason to keep you in mind. Stand out in the right ways, and you’re halfway there.
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