With the explosion of on-line jobs boards like bayt.com and monster and social media like LinkedIn and Facebook, you could be mistaken for thinking that the only way to find jobs in Dubai today is through the internet. But a few of the more astute recruiters and employers remember that there was a world before the internet where job seekers and employers would connect, somewhat effectively, in what was known as a career fair.
Many of you may not be aware, but career fairs are still alive and kicking today and represent a great way for job seekers and employers to meet each other face to face, and on many occasions candidates are interviewed and receive job offers on the same day!
We feel it is time to shed some much deserved light on career fairs and below we have highlighted some of the leading career fairs in Dubai and given you some advice and tips on how best to conduct yourself at a career fair to maximise your chance of being hired.
Leading Career Fairs in Dubai
1. Energy Job fair. This year’s date are yet to be announced, but this annual job fair is a dedicated part of the Arab Oil and Gas Trade exhibition, and this year’s event will most likely take place during September 2012. It is the largest trade fair of its kind in the middle east and provides job seekers with opportunities to network and to meet energy employers face to face for interviews and career discussions.
2. UAE Career Fair. This has been going for 12 years and is the main recruitment, education and training event in Dubai and is exclusively for UAE nationals. This career fair brings together skilled Emirati job seekers and leading employers to support the UAE’s Emiratisation strategy. The next event is scheduled to take place in March 2013. This year’s March event was attended by prestigious organizations such as Siemens and the Jumeirah Hospitality Group.
3. Al Ain Education & Career fair, 30 April – 2 May 2012. Although it is based in Al Ain, this career fair features employers from across the region, including Dubai, and is aimed at students and professionals looking to engage with companies in the Dubai and Abu Dhabi region. Last year there were over 7,000 attendees. This career event is now in its fourth year
4. Bayt Virtual Job fair. This happens about four times a year for the Dubai region. It is an online recruitment environment that stays live for a set amount of time. Jobseekers and employers can engage with each other for interviews or career discussions.
This is just a snapshot of the four main career fairs relevant to the Dubai region, and if you search the internet you are likely to find more.
Top Tips for How to Behave at a Job Fair
Having decided to attend a career fair, we can offer several tips which, if followed, can help to ensure that you gain maximum value from it.
Firstly, it is vital that you dress appropriately and according to the dress code. This may be a suit, but it is sometimes smart casual. Check the career fair website for guidance on how to dress.
Next, ensure that you have multiple copies of your CV and also prepare different versions which are tailored to suit different employers that you may be targeting.
Finally, you may only have a very short amount of time to talk to an employer and make an impact so prepare a concise and very appealing personal presentation about yourself in advance so you can make the most of any interaction you may have with employers.