Mega Careers Fair: the ultimate collaborative event
The University of Huddersfield is delivering an online ‘Mega’ Careers Fair in November that will build on the success of last year’s event.
It will collaborate with four other regional Higher Education (HE) institutions – Leeds Beckett University, University of Bradford, University of Central Lancaster and Sheffield Hallam – to deliver the event.
The first three institutions also participated in last November’s event, which was the brainchild of Claire Aydogan, Careers Head of Service at Huddersfield. Its aims were to:
- have regional HE institutions work together as per the aims of Go Higher West Yorkshire;
- provide wider choice for students by attracting more employers than one institution could do alone, thus boosting student engagement;
- assist busy employers by bringing four institutions’ students to one event, rather than having them visit several campuses during the busy careers fair season;
- remove the need for travel, for both students and employers, by hosting the event online via the Career Fair Plus platform.
To ensure successful execution, relevant staff from each participating HE institute met regularly to set up the Mega Fair, as well as attending Career Fair Plus training sessions to understand the online platform.
Employer contacts were shared within the group. The HE institute with the strongest relationship with each employer invited them to reduce duplicate messaging.
Each institution promoted the fair to their individual student bodies, tailoring marketing messages accordingly, though similar branding was used by all.
The Mega Careers Fair focused on attracting large, graduate employers, which it did successfully. There were 77 employers in attendance, with some well-known names such as PwC, British Airways, Deloitte, Dyson and Sky.
Attending employers commented that the Fair was very well organised. They particularly appreciated the group sessions function as effective tools for engaging with lots of students simultaneously, though they also made use of one-to-one, bookable appointments function.
Student-wise, the Fair attracted 1,316 unique users on the Career Fair Plus app, with a total 2,700 CVs passed to employers.
This year’s approach is quality over quantity with only the most widely known graduate employers being invited. This will ensure that students are not overwhelmed by choice and consequently, less known employers overlooked. Thus, this year’s focus is on the Times Top 100 employers, plus other large, well-known organisations.
The team look forward to hosting PwC, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, KPMG and FDM, to name just a few, and hope that the event will prove even more of a success than last year.
Emma Clarkson, Employer Partnership Manager, Careers Service, University of Huddersfield