If you need to change an existing in-person fair to virtual, we've added a setting that will allow you to do so! This article will provide the necessary steps on how to make this change, while also ensuring the settings within the fair are set appropriately for the update.
Note: Physical fairs cannot transition to virtual if it is within 3 weeks of the fair date.
Changing an existing fair to virtual
To make this change, navigate to your existing fair in Handshake, and click the Edit tab in the upper-right corner of the page.
On the Details section of the fair, make sure there is only one date and time, and the start/end time is within 6 hours.
If the fair has multiple dates and times associated with it or exceeds 6 hours, the fair will not be able to be saved or updated while these details are in place. You will need to remove the additional fair dates and times, and possibly even reduce the duration of the virtual fair.
Note: If multiple days are still required for the fair, you will need to create a separate virtual fairs for each of the dates.
You will also want to ensure that the student registration end date matches the one of the fair. If this is different, the fair will not update or save accordingly.
Once everything is confirmed, change the Location type to Virtual and the facilitation type to Handshake.
Next, click the Update Career fair button in the lower-right corner of the screen to save your changes!
When you save your changes and the fair is transitioned to Virtual and facilitated in Handshake, an automated email will be sent to the fair registrant on approved employer registrations, prompting them to set their schedule.
If the fair registrant reaches out to you because they are missing the email, recommend that they locate the fair in Handshake and click on the Schedules tab, then click Add Sessions to proceed.
Additional fair settings
If an employer has multiple divisions registered for the fair, they will need to be deleted before making the change. Additionally, if an employer had registrations for sessions on separate days, these will need to be updated to the single date/time or deleted.
Date and Time Details
These parameters were put in place to reduce complexity and create an exceptional experience for students and employers. Our research suggests that three hours is the optimal length for virtual fairs for both students and employers and that students typically attend fairs for two hours maximum.
Employers can schedule multiple group and 1:1 sessions per fair, which will allow them to meet with different groups of students over the course of the day. Supporting employer meetings across multiple fair dates and times is also something we hope to be able to support in a future iteration of virtual fairs. For the time being, you can also create separate virtual fairs to mimic separate dates and times.
Creating a new fair
If you create or edit a fair that has both a Virtual fair type and the Host field set to Handshake selected, the "Add a Date and Time" button will be disabled. You will also receive an error message if your virtual fair is longer than six hours.
In order to save the fair, there will need to be only one date and time, limited to 6 hours maximum, or you can temporarily set Host Type to External until you are ready to remove additional dates and times.
Here is an example of the 6 hour limit error:
If you attempt to update an existing fair with these conditions, this is the error that will appear.
If you are hosting your virtual fair externally and promoting it to students via Handshake, make sure to check No for the fair being facilitated on Handshake and include a link for the external location.
Please see Virtual Fairs: Video Requirements & Troubleshooting for more information on video specifically.
For more information on the full virtual career fair offering, please see our blog posts linked below!