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Posted May 02, 2008 by

Resume Tips for Career Fairs and Online Job Banks

If you’re all set to attend a career fair – or are looking to post your resume on an online job bank – and are concerned about how to create a resume for companies you have yet to meet, you are not alone.
Fortunately, there are ways to create great resumes capable of catching the eyes of potential recruiters no matter what venue you’re working with. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Conduct Research to Gauge Recruiters
Whether you’re looking to leave your resumes with recruiters at a career fair, or post them on online job banks, it helps to research the companies you’re interested in working with so that you can better tailor your accomplishments.
Many career fairs spend a good amount of time advertising their arrival weeks in advance. This means that you have time to research all of the companies attending so that you can create one or more resumes for each one you’re interested in working for.
As for online job banks, while you won’t know who is out there recruiting, you can still gain a slight edge on your competition by researching job specifications at the companies in which you’re interested. This way, you can proactively tailor your resume to focus on skills and achievements that will appeal to those recruiters.
Make Your Career Fair Resume Brief and Scannable
At a career fair, it is likely that you will be the fifth, sixth, or even sixtieth person that recruiters have seen that day. Since they might be overwhelmed by the number of resumes they’ve received, it is a good idea to keep yours brief – one or two pages is fine.
Also, it is becoming a common practice for many companies to scan resumes into a computer after they leave the fair. So to be safe, try making yours scannable by using fonts like Times New Roman, Arial, Helvetica, Verdana, Tahoma and Courier in font sizes anywhere from 9 to 12 points.
Use Plenty of Keywords When Posting Online
As you have probably guessed, recruiters are busy people with tons of resumes to look through everyday – especially when searching through job banks where there may be thousands of resumes posted. So as a benefit to these recruiters, most job banks offer an on-site, customizable search engine. While this feature makes searching easier for the recruiter, if you don’t include specific keywords in your resume before posting it, it is likely that yours will never be found.
A good way to combat this issue is by saturating your resume with keywords related to your desired job. If you don’t know which words to use, try conducting your own keyword search on the Internet until you begin finding field-related information. It may seem like an unconventional way to create a resume, but it is actually a good strategy for ranking near the top of most keyword searches.
Anticipating the unknown when writing resumes can seem like a difficult task. But if you take the right steps, and have a good attitude along the way, you will encounter your career success sooner than you think.
Heather Eagar is a former professional resume writer and owner of who is now dedicated to providing job seekers with resources and products that promote job search success from beginning to end.