Businesses across the U.S. continue to face a range of challenges when seeking to fill their talent pipelines. However, there is one practice that can make a key difference for recruiters when targeting individuals with disabilities - virtual career fairs.
With one in five Americans having a disability, this represents a diverse group of job seekers that companies should be tapping into. Understanding how to best engage with them can be difficult though, and this is where taking part in virtual career fairs can prove crucial in a company’s talent acquisition process.
Reaching out to candidates with ease
The 2016 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) highlighted the current high regard that many employers place on virtual career fairs, with 99.4 percent of respondents stating they already take part in these recruitment drives. Furthermore, these events were rated as having the greatest effectiveness by employers - above such activities as social media, advertising and their own corporate website - in helping to position their employer brand as an inclusive employer for job seekers.
Understanding what it is that makes a virtual career fair such a powerful tool in these efforts is therefore essential. NACE found that the "high touch" nature of virtual career fairs means employers are able to engage with their target audience of suitable job seekers.
Why should businesses sponsor virtual career fairs?
Some of the major benefits that companies can gain from participating in virtual careers fairs include:
1. Lower costs: Businesses can reduce their overheads by recruiting in a virtual manner, with no need for printed materials, booth furnishings, or travel costs to incur
2. Ease of information capture: A virtual career fair automatically captures the data of applicants, helping to ensure easier contact and follow up after the event, as well as retaining all candidates’ contact information for future roles and pipelines
3. Candidate diversity: A virtual career fair gives businesses the opportunity to engage with a high volume of national talent. Candidates can apply for roles from around the country, with no constraints due to time or location.
4. Recruiters are more inclusive: Rather than relying on a resume, online career fairs provide a different perspective to recruiters as they allow candidates the chance to provide additional information on a gap in employment that was due to a disability or medical condition.
5. Deliver a consistent message: The hosting of virtual booths means a consistent message can be sent to candidates regarding a company's values, needs and interests. All applicants will receive the same information, face the same questions and confer with the same company representatives.
6. Precision in recruitment: Recruiters are able to match candidates with employers based on specific skills, experience and requirements, ensuring only those individuals who represent the best fit for roles are invited to apply and take part.
Sign up for our next career fair today
At Getting Hired, we regularly host events that bring together employers and qualified job seekers from within the community of individuals with disabilities. We aim to showcase their talents and connect businesses with people who have the relevant skills and aptitude to succeed in their roles. It is this targeted approach to recruitment that helps to make the virtual career fair a real benefit for businesses.
Our next virtual career fair will be taking place in the Spring of 2018. Please reach out to us if you're interested in sponsoring the next event!
Contributions to this blog from Sarah Pullano, Account Manager at Getting Hired