How Virtual Career Fairs Have Changed The Staffing Industry

It is sage and common advice for job seekers, new graduates, professionals, and the like to be encouraged to go to a job or career fair. Attending these kinds of events connects employers with a large number of prospective employees, and vice versa. Job seekers can interact with peers, and connect with potential employers, companies get their brand out there and are more recognizable to the workforce, networking happens, many good things come out of these events on both sides. That being said, the job recruitment and seeking landscape has changed significantly in recent years, and companies are taking many of these kinds of career fair events online. 

No one knows more about the way the staffing industry and job recruitment environment have evolved than the team at Premier Virtual. After almost a decade of managing in-person events, co-founder and CEO Steven Edwards jumped into offering virtual events in 2018, as he saw the demand and market change. In early 2020 Premier developed their own innovative software platform for companies to host events, quickly becoming one of the top-used planforms in the nation when the COVID-19 pandemic forced businesses to go virtual. Premier Virtual is the number one virtual career fair platform in the workforce development industry. 

Edwards explains that he started to see the shortcomings in the in-person job fair market, employers were missing out on connecting with qualified candidates due to long lines, and candidates walking away. Candidates were finding themselves frustrated as well. Edwards describes it as a process of walking into a crowded room, then waiting in line to hand over a resume and saying “Hire me?”, and then walking away always dissatisfied and doing it all again. The process was not efficient, so Edwards set out to create a space for both employers and job seekers to have a better experience.

The Benefits Are Clear

  • Cost-effective
  • Far-reaching, not limited by the geography of the size of the venue
  • More efficient, save time to travel and set-up
  • Fantastic lead generators
  • Increase brand recognition
  • Easily accessible for everyone
  • Make instant connections with targeted, highly qualified candidates
  • Reduce Time to Hire from 30 Days to an average of 7 days
  • Increase the quality of your bench
  • Attract candidates from all levels of experience, not just entry-level

Traditional job fairs tend to offer introductory and lower-level jobs, whereas on the online platform companies can hold executive-level career and hiring events, recruiting the top qualified candidates from all over the world. The system that Premier Virtual created goes far above and beyond, offering companies the ability to create a custom career recruitment system, as well as employing a one-of-a-kind flat licensing rate system allowing companies to hold multiple cost-effective events. Premier Virtual supported thousands of companies connecting with and employing individuals, even in the hardest of hit places and times over the last two years. The platform has powered 2,500 events to date, connecting 25,000 employers to 250,000 job seekers, and has earned industry-leading ratings on review sites like Capterra and G2. Edwards prides himself on the dedication of his team, and how they have truly impacted and changed lives across the world. 

Born and raised in small-town Wisconsin, Edwards is a veteran, serving in the 82nd Airborne Division of the United States Army, as well as in the Florida National Guard. Edwards is always working to think outside of the box to see how he can make the industry better, and help people daily in a way that benefits their lives. He, along with business partner Gary Edwards lead a diverse, innovative team, motivated to drive advancements in the industry. “We are a ‘Future-Focused’ company, and we are every day innovating and making improvements. Our goal is to create a stand-alone platform that can provide all the solutions human resource executives need, in one place.” 

Connect with Edwards and the Premier Virtual team on social media and through the company website, https://premiervirtual.com

 

The Veterans Florida Virtual Expo showcases the endless opportunities

Florida’s the best state for veterans. The Veterans Florida Virtual Expo showcases the endless opportunities, resources, and benefits for military families in interactive virtual booths.

(Florida) – Veterans Florida is hosting a virtual expo on June 24th, 2021, presented by Bank of America.  The virtual expo will include:

  • Network with veteran-friendly employers in industries like aerospace, engineering, defense, and more at the career fair
  • Watch Florida’s top veteran entrepreneurs compete in the Battle of the Pitches
  • Get expert advice from industry experts at workshops and panels
  • Explore resources that make Florida the most veteran-friendly state

There are 45 major employers with hundreds of job openings, plus informative panels and keynote speakers that include, Senator Tom A. Wright, Derrick Fishback from Amazon Web Services and Scott Neil from American Freedom Distillery.  Also speaking will be Tom Rice of Magnolia Grill of Fort Walton Beach and Bobby Carbonell of Growler Country Franchising. The event is being powered by Premier Virtual, a virtual event platform created by Army Veteran, Steven Edwards.

“Premier Virtual’s growth proves what veterans can accomplish when they combine their military experience with our Entrepreneurship Program. There’s no better platform for veterans and their families to explore Florida’s opportunities than Premier’s industry-leading software and we thank Steve and his team for their sponsorship.” – Veterans Florida Executive Director Joe Marino

WHO? – Free for veterans, retiring and separating from the active-duty military, members of the Guard and Reserves, and their families.

WHERE? – Virtually on veteran-owned Premier Virtual

WHEN? Thursday, June 24, 2021, starting at 10 AM ET

Attendees – click here to register: https://portal.premiervirtual.com/event/register-jobseeker/7066-veterans-florida-expo-2021

Sponsors – click here to register: https://www.veteransfloridaexpo.org/sponsors/

Contact Information:

Dan Barrow, Marketing & Communications Director – Veterans Florida
C: 850-570-3448
O: (850) 296-8493
E: Barrow@VeteransFlorida.org
https://www.veteransflorida.org/

[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

South Florida Tech Company Accelerates Growth, Opens New Office in Delray Beach

Office Expansion Enables “Premier Virtual” to Fast-Track Customer and Employee Successes

Delray Beach, FL. June 14, 2021 – Premier Virtual, South Florida’s fast-growing virtual job fair platform, recently opened a new office in Delray Beach, Florida. The move will accommodate the company’s rapid growth, leverage the area’s diverse high-tech talent pool while responding to the critical need of employees and employers throughout the country.

“We are enthusiastic about our success over the past year, and our new location reflects our culture of innovation and excellence,” said Steve Edwards, CEO of Premier Virtual. “It’s the perfect time for us to make this move to maximize the potential for our team and growing customer base while allowing us to respond to critical demand from employers and employees.”

Premier Virtual has powered over 2,500 virtual career fairs, connecting 25,000 employers to over 250,000 registered job seekers, since its official launch in March 2020. The company was in its infancy when everything practically changed overnight due to the virus. Virtual event options suddenly became the only option, and Premier Virtual was at the forefront.

According to the US Department of Labor, joblessness remains at an all-time high, and the number of unemployed persons is still nearly 10 million. Back in April 2020, the unemployment rate jumped to a level not seen since the Great Depression, and as of April 2021, it was still a grim 6.1 percent. The good news though is the number of Americans filing “new” claims for unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in nearly 15 months.

The impact of the virus and the economic effect have been widespread. Both employees and employers nationwide are still feeling the fallout, including a labor shortage.

Premier Virtual is helping people get back to work by connecting employees to employers. The company has grown from two employees to more than 20 in the past year. The platform has been a catalyst for companies across the country who are looking to hire by providing them a virtual option to connect with job seekers, while potential employees enjoy an interactive experience, versus submitting their resume to an algorithm. Premier Virtual is the exclusive virtual career networking platform for CareerSource Florida and Tech Hub South Florida.

Nationally, Premier Virtual is the #1 platform among workforce development boards, with nearly 200 accounts. Beyond workforce agencies, many school boards, institutions of higher learning, and tech organizations have patterned with Premier Virtual to host their virtual career fairs. The US Veterans Chamber of Commerce and American Legion are also using the Premier Virtual platform to help Veterans find gainful employment.

During this virus, in-person career fairs were prohibited, and Premier Virtual’s platform provided a great alternative to connect employers and jobseekers. Post-Virus, many organizations recognize that virtual career fairs are a more effective and efficient way to hire. Based on the positive results and ROI, the trajectory of virtual events continues to expand.

About Premier Virtual

Premier Virtual is an online virtual job and career fair platform. The online hiring events are designed to bridge the gap between technology and human experience. The company has hosted more than 2500 job fairs over the past year and is poised for continuous growth. Premier Virtual is a future-focused company that believes through innovation, it can provide clients with the best possible solutions to be successful. Relationships are built with integrity, trust, honesty, transparency, and a culture of teamwork built on servant leadership.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Expand your Talent Pool with Virtual Career Fairs

Let’s face it; everyone wants to hire a Rockstar employee eager to learn, show initiative, and is a team player. Unfortunately, many employers feel that they can attract top talent simply because of their brand or reputation, but the tide has turned.

There is a severe labor shortage as I write this post in June of 2021. It’s not just the hi-tech or MBA positions either. We’re talking truckers, welders, restaurant workers, hospitality…you name it, and most likely, there is a challenge to find qualified workers.

There is a myriad of reasons and some that include the COVID crisis. Many of the workers at or near retirement age figured this was the right time to make that decision. There has also been a migration of jobs since people had the time to retool and retrain.

Overall, while much has changed, one thing still holds, it’s different to find top talent, which is why adding virtual career fairs on online job fairs makes so much sense.

To put your job opening in front of the right candidate’s talent, acquisition teams need to do more than outreach. Essentially, if you don’t give job seekers a more efficient way to engage with your company, you’ll only reach the candidate pool with the time to spend on the job search. Offering in-person only job fairs typically attracts the unemployed but does not offer the ‘unhappily employed’ flexibility to make the same effort.

Adding a virtual job fair means that anyone, anywhere, can log in and participate. Jobseekers can quickly scan jobs that match their criteria, chat with a recruiter, and enter into a video interview if there is a good match.

Think of all the time and energy it takes to do all of that in person. It’s often enough reason for a qualified candidate not to attend and send in their resume, which, no matter how qualified, can be quickly passed over or never even reach the hiring manager’s desk.

The same holds for the hiring managers in your company. Recruiters work hard to attract the best candidates for the position, but they often have to make a less than optimal hiring decision because of demands placed on that opening.

Virtual job fairs tend to increase attendance rates by 30% to 50%, and they have a registration to an attendance rate of over 70%. For example, we powered a state-wide career fair in Virginia with 350 employers, and 15,000 job candidates attend! Those are numbers that are impossible to achieve in person.

Another great tactic is to use the virtual platform to host other events that can engage potential candidates, such as a Tech-Talk or Virtual Mastermind that features a keynote speaker or a group of panelists with a Q&A format. During your event, you can have several sponsors host virtual booths to offer more information on their companies and invite a recruiter to be available and answer any potential work-related questions.

These events are part of your recruitment marketing strategy and go beyond the traditional social media posts and email or text messages. Now you can use those platforms to invite candidates to something of value, regardless of whether they are currently in the job market or considering your company for a potential career change.

These types of events create a great opportunity to partner strategically with local career coaches or resume writing services. These partners will gladly participate for free to have a chance to speak in front of potential prospects. In return, you’ll be building value with the community and positioning yourself as a category expert.

Using a virtual career platform in this capacity will also likely get you some attention from the local media. Use it to your advantage by inviting them to y our event. Offer them a free booth to promote any openings they might have. This goodwill will often result in mutual support and a mention of the event on the local news! Job creation is always a newsworthy topic.

It all leads to a broader talent pool, which means your recruiters have better choices. The goal of hiring the best candidate for every position is achievable when you attract the best talent. The best part is that many of these tactics do not require an increase in your budget. For example, the Premier Virtual platform lets you host unlimited events per license, per location. The more you use it, the more you save, and the greater your ROI.

If you have not done so already or are using a virtual platform and are considering alternatives, please contact us for your free, no-obligation demo.

[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

5 Steps To Kickstart Your Virtual Career Fairs!

1)         Choose The Platform – First and foremost, you have to choose a platform to host your virtual career fair.  Deciding which platform to use can often be the most challenging part of the process since there are many options and varying levels of features and sophistication.  To determine which option is best for you, make sure to consider the following criteria:

  1. What is the size and scope of your event?  Suppose you are a single employer looking to fill a dozen or fewer open positions in one geographic location. In that case, you may be perfectly fine with just a video conferencing program like Zoom or Teams.  If, however, you are a host of an event with multiple employers and each has a significant amount of job openings or a large corporation with many openings and locations, video-conferencing alone will not be enough.  You will need a dedicated virtual career fair platform with expanded features such as uploading resumes, one-on-one chat, a customizable lobby and booths, and access to reports with all of the critical data collected during such an event.
  2. What is your budget? If you require a virtual career fair platform, the next consideration is your budget.  Many platforms charge an upfront fee and then charge additional fees based on the number of participants and or the number of resumes downloaded, booths, etc.  These costs can become prohibitive if your event draws a large attendance.  Make sure to go with a platform that offers a flat-rate price that never increases, which is something that Premier Virtual always guarantees!
  3. Is ‘ease of use’, something that concerns you? Is ‘ease of use’ something that concerns you? If so, we highly suggest that you demo each platform you are considering and put yourself fin the shoes of your employers and your attendees.  Once again, Premier Virtual prides itself on its ease of use and its top-rated customer service.  Ask if the platform you are considering provides a dedicated account manager and live training so that everyone that participates fully understands how to use the platform and ensures a successful event.  You can click here for a checklist of features you should be looking for in a virtual career fair platform demo.

2)         Lead Time – Once you’ve selected your platform, give yourself enough time to have everyone adequately trained and to promote the event. Preparing everyone, the hosts, administrators, employers, and attendees is the best way to set yourself up for a successful event.  Waiting until the last minute to register and navigate through the platform often results in a poor user experience or a lower return.  Equally important for a successful event is to have a strong turnout.  Successful events require all of the typical marketing efforts through social media, as well as paid ads.  I highly recommend that you offer each employer a flyer to post and promote the event. It’s also crucial to send out an official press release at least seven days before the event. We suggest the marketing manager personally invite the local press to attend as an employer if they have relevant openings.  I recommend you not charge the local media for their booths in exchange for some ‘goodwill’ that can help your efforts to have your event mentioned in the news.

Another best practice is opening your event with a training webinar for attendees. Announce the webinar in your marketing materials and all of your registration pages. In addition to the training videos, let attendees know there will be a live ‘walk-through’ of the platform on the day of the event.   Premier Virtual offers this service if requested by our host/client and something we highly recommend.

3)         Added Value – Add value to your event by including resume writing webinars or a tech talk with a keynote speaker.  These additional features add value to the attendees and create other points of interest to promote and help draw even more participants to your event.  Along those lines, if your event has a well-known speaker or is offering a free resume writing class or an employment coach session, the press will also have more incentive to feature your event in an article or live on the news.

4)         Event Team – Designate a point person for each facet of the event.  Creating a point team may seem obvious, but some large organizations with many different layers can struggle with it, or smaller organizations expect one person to do everything.  A successful event requires the following point persons:

  1. Administrator –This person has full access to the platform and is typically the point person between Premier Virtual and the organization.  The admin will assign all other users their roles and access to features and information in the platform.
  2. Event Manager – This person is responsible for learning the platform to the best of their ability and be an internal point of contact to help others register and answer basic questions.  Other duties include organizing training webinars and working directly with the Premier Virtual account manager to address any issues before the day of the event.  We also highly encourage the event manager to review employers’ booths to make sure they are doing everything possible to prepare. The booths should be customized; all social media links should be active and provide videos wherever possible.  After the event, the administrator or the admin should access reports and provide the information and follow-up support to whoever needs it.
  3. Publicity/Promotion/Marketing – This person will lead the marketing activity to ensure that the event is being marketing properly and the point person for any press/media or others looking for more information.

5)         Thorough Follow-up – A successful event does not mean that you hire everyone on the spot.  It does mean that you have received enough qualified candidates and had enough engaging one-on-one conversations that you want to follow up. A good platform will provide recruiters with thorough reporting that includes everyone who attended, booths they visited, resumes they submitted, and chats or video conferences that took place.  A comprehensive report will have all of the information you and your employers need to appropriately follow up with qualified candidates eager to make a decision.  Timely follow-up is key to making the right hire, and if you feel strong enough about a candidate during the event, you may want to make that initial offer so you don’t lose them!

If you are considering hosting a virtual career fair and have more questions, please feel free to contact us to schedule a free demo.  Our platform has hosted over 2,000 virtual career fairs, connecting more than 20,000 employers to over 200,000 registered job seekers.  We have the experience and the technology to help you host a successful event.

[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

PRICING

Demo