Picture the scene – you’re helping an employer clear up at the end of a Careers Fair and there are two piles of CVs on the table, one noticeably larger than the other. You offer to bag up the larger pile of CVs only to be told ‘that’s okay, they’re for the recycling’…

Now I’m not saying this actually happened*.

*it actually happened.

ScreamCreative Commons License abstrusa via Compfight

So how did this happen, and how do you make sure your amazing CV isn’t on the pile earmarked as ‘Hamster Bedding’ or ‘Future Ikea Wardrobe’? Quite simple actually – be prepared: Click this link to a matrix of the employers coming to Careers Fair 2017 on 08 November and decide who to target.


Check out employers’ websites/LinkedIn/Facebook/Twitter/any other social media. See what they’re saying about themselves and their graduate recruitment opportunities. You can even do this on the day- get some literature from their display, or visit their website via your smartphone.

Now you’re ready to go and TALK TO THEM. Scary stuff, eh?  Let them know you’re interested in them and their specific opportunities. Then and only then do you offer to leave your CV and have a chance they will take it away for future consideration.

If you just shuffle up and say ‘I’m a (insert course here) final year student, may I leave a CV?’, showing no sign that you have done any research, your CV is gonna be pulped.

Worse yet, the people who rock up and said ‘so what do you do?’ don’t even make it that far – their CV’s most likely under a coffee cup. Imagine you’re on a date and it’s all going beautifully, then you lean across the table and say to your potential significant other, ‘I’m sorry, what’s your name again?’ Buzzkill – am I right? Well, that’s what you just did to the employer, and you are not going to be taken home to meet their parents. Ever.

I don’t mean to make this sound scary. It isn’t. Employers are there to charm you as much as you want to charm them. You want a job and they want the next generation of graduate talent (of whom you are one). A little simple prep means you’ll stand out from the crowd and be waaay ahead of the competition who haven’t read this post.

Good luck!