There is a lot that goes into running a career fair. This guide is structured as a checklist to help you prepare for a successful in-person fair for employers and students. After configuring your settings, we suggest testing and managing the career fair well in advance of your event.
- Step 1: Create and Configure Your Career Fair in Handshake
- Step 2: Test Registering for the Career Fair
- Signup as an Employer
- Signup as a Student
- Check in and print a nametag
- Step 3: Workflows and Managing Your Career Fair
- Approving Employer Registrations
- Accessing Registration Types (booths) for Employers
- Communicating with Students
Step 1: Create and Configure Your Career Fair in Handshake
Create the Career Fair
- Create your career fair and configure all fair-related settings. For detailed instructions on how to create a fair in Handshake, refer to Career Fairs: Creation.
Best Practice: create all relevant surveys to add to your fair for students and employers, before creating your career fair. Check out Creating and Testing Surveys for help creating surveys
- Payment Options within Career Fairs: There are two ways to handle payments for your career fairs in Handshake, credit card and manual payments:
Credit Card: In order to use credit card payments you must integrate with Stripe, TouchNet or CASHNet and have your “Payment Preferences” school settings configured. See Payments System Setup and Testing Guide for a step by step guide to setting up payments.
Manual: You can specify instructions for employers to be able to pay with cash, check, or link to external payment method, like PayPal. If you use this option you will manually need to mark employers as paid in Handshake as you receive their payment.
Best Practice: set Your Default Invoice message: This is the message that employers will receive along with their invoice. This will prevent you from having to type out this message multiple times when creating & sending invoices.
Best Practice: select “Automatically invoice after approving” for career fairs and events. This will allow you to automatically be prompted to create and send invoices for your employer once you mark their registration as approved.
Configure Your Fair’s Registration Types
- Set registration types that employers will be able to select and register for.
- Note: until registration types are created, employers will not be able to register.
Need further explanation on creating your registration types? Check out Fairs: Create Registration Types.
Want to add a booth map for each Date and Time? Check out Career Fairs: Upload a Booth Map
Best Practice: If you would like to have “Early Bird Pricing” for career fairs, we recommend setting up separate registration types for Early Bird, Regular, and Late, add the appropriate amount of each type, and have the registration types available during the correct time frame.
Best Practice: If you want to charge different prices for employer types such as sponsors, non-profits, etc, then you can configure your registration types to have different prices and be named accordingly “Non-Profit” or “Employer Partner / Sponsor”.
Print Student Name Tags, Configure Kiosk and Name Tag Printer
- Go through the Name Tag Printing Configuration Guide for setup details and step-by-step guide.
Setting Student Qualifications, Invite Only, and Waitlists
- Student Qualifications: allow you to filter what students will be able to sign up for the fair. Qualifications can be set by school year, GPA, major, college or any labels. If you would like all students to have the opportunity you can disregard this step! If you use qualifications, all students can still see the fair but only those who are qualified can sign up
- Invite Only: will make your fair invite only, you will then need invite students on the “student invite” tab. Only these students will be able to see and sign up for the career fair in Handshake.
- Student Session Limit: will allow you to designate a maximum number of students that may attend that session. When registration meets capacity, students will have an option to join the waitlist. Read more about Waitlists for Fairs & Events.
Send Invites to Employers
- Refer to Events: Inviting Employers for a step-by-step guide to inviting employers.
- Note: be ready to approve employers that request to attend the fair. Similar to managing employers and jobs, setup saved searches to filter requests.
Step 2: Test Registering for the Career Fair
Think you're ready for the Career Fair? If so, it's time to test!
Note: make sure you’ve gone through the Payments System Setup and Testing Guide checklist first to configure and integrate your payment system.
Sign up as Employer
1. Ensure you have an employer account linked to your career services account. If not, you will need to Create an Employer Account Associated with Your Career Services Account.
2. Create a test fair.
3. Publish Fair as “Hidden”.
4. Copy the Employer Preview Link.
5. Switch to your employer account and paste the link, then register for the fair.
- Note: if you aren't sure how to switch user views, refer to Switching User Views.
6. Switch back to your Career Services account to approve the registration, add any discounts, generate and send an invoice, and assign a booth number.
7. Receive invoice and make a payment if you would like to make sure payments go through.
8. Generate a new invoice if a change is made, such as a refund or discount.
- Note: the registration is a source of truth for payment status.
Sign up as Student
1. Ensure you have a student account linked to your career services account. If not, Create a Student Account Associated with Your Career Services Account.
2. Set the fair as invite only.
3. Invite the test student account: To do this, start typing the student's name. When you start typing a students name you will see the number of students invited start to narrow down. When you hit "1" you are good to go!
4. Switch to student view and register, then switch back to your career services account and confirm the registration is displayed as expected.
1. From the fair's overview page, click Open Check-in Kiosk, on the left of the page under Actions:
- For more information on how to open a kiosk, refer to Launch a Check-in Kiosk.
2. Check in as a student, using an email address or card if you've configured card swiping. Students do not have to be pre-registered for the fair in order to check in successfully.
3. If name tag printing is enabled and configured, the name tag will print automatically upon check-in.
Step 3: Workflows and Managing Your Career Fair
Approving employer registrations
Decide what criteria will be used in determining whether or not an employers registration will be approved and the workflow of approving registrations.
Accessing Registration Types (booths) for Employers
Click the “View Registration Types” button for a list of all assigned and unassigned booths. For more information on assigning employer booths, check out Fairs: Assign Registration Types (Booths) to Employers.
Communication with your students
You can send updates and reminders about your fair to students by using the “Email Student Attendees” feature. This feature can also be used to market your career fair by sending emails to students that are “Invited but not registered or Checkin In.” This feature also makes it easy to send a message to those students that registered but have yet to check-in!