Connecting through career fairs
Career fairs are an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of careers in construction among a group of highly employable prospects. In addition, these events allow you to speak specifically about jobs and skills needed at your business. However, there is no central clearinghouse of all such events in Montana, so you’ll need to do some research. The MCA receives information about some events, but certainly not all of them.
Reach out to the school contacts in your area. They can fill you in on how to get involved as a vendor and/or sponsor at local events with which they are affiliated. In addition, contact other groups that provide similar opportunities including your local job service, your chamber of commerce, Future Farmers of America, 4-H clubs, and more.
It helps to have some fact sheets about your company and its personnel needs available at these types of events. In addition, banners and giveaways (logoed pens, cups, etc.) help to attract attention to your booth or table. If your company doesn’t have a designated marketing person to prepare these items for you, there are plenty of websites that make it easy, or even build them for you for a nominal fee. Take a look at www.vistaprint.com and www.displays2go.com and similar websites to get started.
If you attend, be ready to enthusiastically share information about the benefits of careers in construction and what makes your business stand out. This may come as a surprise to you, but teenagers aren’t always particularly talkative. To make attending these events worthwhile, you will need to grab their attention and give them a reason to listen to you. We recommend sending younger members of your staff to career fairs and school visits because the students are more likely to relate to someone nearer to their age group.
Career fairs provide businesses with one-on-one contact with prospective employees. Return on investment at events like these is hard to measure; however, if you catch the eye of just one future employee, it might be worthwhile.