7 Tips for Hosting Effective Virtual Hiring Events
Before the pandemic, just over one-third of employers had attended a virtual hiring fair – and that number jumped to more than 90% by the end of 2020. And while in-person events are slowly returning, virtual hiring events are here to stay because they offer a variety of benefits to both employers and candidates.
So how can your HR team make the most of your upcoming virtual hiring and networking events? They have significant differences from in-person events – and they’re much more difficult to run. But with these seven tips, you’ll learn how to hold effective online hiring and networking events that grow your talent pools.
1. Communicate Clearly
Recruiting events, whether they’re virtual or in-person, can be stressful for candidates. Communicating all the details and nuances of your event will help attendees, who are likely nervous, feel much more at ease.
For virtual hiring events, these details should include email invitations and reminders so candidates don’t miss out, a schedule for the event, check-in and login info, and anything else they might need to know. This is their first taste of what working for your company might be like, so start off on a thoughtful and organized note.
2. Encourage Employees to Share
Asking your current employees to spread the word about your virtual hiring events on social media serves several purposes. It casts a wider net for potential candidates and attendees, and increases your reach to ensure your attendance will be strong.
It also helps to boost your employer brand for those potential candidates. If many of your employees share the news about your event on platforms like Linkedin, it serves as an endorsement of your company – your current employees like where they work so much they want to encourage others to join them.
3. Don’t Skip on Swag
Just because everyone at your event is not in the same room doesn’t mean you can skip making it look and feel like a fully branded, beautiful event. It still reflects your employer brand and you want the impression to be positive.
Investing in materials such as banners, virtual backgrounds, and swag bags shows candidates you have invested in the event and take it as seriously as an in-person one.
4. Plan Carefully
Having a detailed, clear schedule and plan for the entire event created ahead of time will ensure everything runs smoothly. Each portion of your virtual hiring events should have an outline.
Rehearsing any possible parts ahead of time is also a good idea. Dead time or technical issues can really drag down a virtual event, so test and test again to be sure everything is working properly.
5. Expand Beyond Recruiter Relationships
Virtual hiring events don’t need to be all about candidates interacting with recruiters. In fact, that can be intimidating and less informative than incorporating other elements into your event as well.
You can include a session where you encourage attendees to network among themselves, create a happy hour or mixer where candidates can talk to hiring managers and executives, or feature a Q&A with current employees to give a full picture of what working for your organization is like.
6. Follow Up With Attendees
After the event has ended successfully, following up with everyone who attended leaves a final good impression. You should thank them for participating, and share any relevant follow-up information such as your careers page and social channels where they can stay up to date.
Be sure to extend a personalized message to the most promising candidates as well. Even if you don’t have room for them in your organization right now, giving them a good candidate experience ensures they’ll be willing to apply later on when a role opens up.
7. Make the Most of Attendee Data
When your event ends, it’s never too early to start planning to make the next one even better. Use the data you gathered from your event, such as participant engagement metrics, to see what worked well and what could be improved.
Running and smoothing executing virtual hiring events is challenging. But with preparation and practice, your organization can succeed at delivering great events for you and your attendees. Need help with other aspects of your virtual hiring strategy? Cangrade can help.