Being part of the recruiting team here at iCIMS is really exciting for a few reasons. First, iCIMS is one of New Jersey’s fastest growing companies. In just a few years, iCIMS has added hundreds of employees and they are expected to add another 120 within the year. Second, I get to use the latest talent acquisition solutions to help with my sourcing and recruiting efforts.
While most of our recruiting efforts come from job postings, social media, and employee referrals, one of the most important efforts comes from college recruiting. Career fairs provide a prime opportunity to interact with students, bring brand awareness, and make many new connections. From planning to the actual event, here are some tips that we live by!
1) Create a Plan
At iCIMS, we spend months planning for college recruitment season. We have frequent brainstorming sessions where we choose our target schools, develop “teams” of the best iCIMS employees to join us, and discuss which jobs we want to focus on while at the event. Additionally, we have the task of choosing the way we market ourselves while there, from picking out the tchotchkes to hand out, to what banners we want to use, to the brochures and information pieces laid out. Once everything is decided, it is time to prep the team, charge the iPad and laptops, pack up the supplies, and hit the road!
2) Go Team!
Having the right team in place is crucial for a success. We carefully select who will be on the career fair teams, which is often hard because we have so many great volunteers. Whether it’s a Monmouth alum from iCIMS’ Sales team helping us recruit at the business school’s events or bringing a Scarlett Knight from iCIMS’ R&D department to a Rutgers tech career fair, we try to bring alumni from the schools who are representative of the opportunities currently available at iCIMS. We hand out special branded t-shirts to the dream team members, give them a break down of the opportunities, the logistics of the career fair, “the elevator pitch,” etc. Once everybody is prepped and caffeinated, we get ready to shake some hands!
3) Keep it Simple
We are a green company, so we are always trying to think of ways to reduce our carbon footprint. We actually don’t collect a single resume at the career fairs. We either have applicants sign into our Talent CRM, iCIMS Connect, at the fair or we hand out an Ike sticker with the career page link on it to encourage them to apply directly online. After a long day of meeting and greeting at the career fair, our work continues. We will run a report to see if any attendees have applied to positions at iCIMS and start to qualify the applicants and take next steps, like sending them a request to submit a Video Cover Letter. It’s important to follow up with the candidates and to be in touch with them shortly after they apply. This gets them interested and excited, as they are usually overwhelmed at these events and may feel they would otherwise be lost in the pile! While on the career site, they will also get a better understanding of who we are and especially our company culture. While this approach is new for us, we have seen a lot of success with this tactic.
Career fairs can be very overwhelming and exhausting for both the recruiters and students. It’s important, even after giving the same spiel a hundred times, to let your passion and excitement for the company show. Be friendly, be welcoming, and be yourself. The students we meet can feel our enthusiasm and it’s contagious. Remember, you could be shaking hands with your future colleague!