It may seem far off, but preparing for fall career fairs now can ensure you have a plan in place to win top talent. Carve out some time this spring to identify your current hiring challenges, and create a strategy to overcome them in time for the competitive fall recruitment season. Below are five steps to take now to set your talent acquisition team up for success.

Identify the career fairs you will attend

Audit the results of past career fairs your company has attended, including the number of qualified candidates per event, the number of interviews secured, how many offers were made, total offers accepted and what happened to the candidates you met with during previous years. Use this historical data to set your new 2016 conference strategy goals, and create a tactical plan to accomplish each goal. Identify the resources, such as talent acquisition software, you need to execute these tactics.

Invest in recruiting software

Investing in talent acquisition software will greatly streamline your event-based recruiting efforts and will help you recruit top talent before, during and after events. Leverage an event management solution to view the complete lifecycle of each prospect. Use pre-registration functionality to streamline check-in and to schedule interviews through the platform. At the event, you will be able to upload resumes, create a record of event attendance and track all recruiter and candidate actions, all in one platform.

Prepare to engage with your talent pipeline

You may meet numerous qualified candidates, but only have a handful of open positions. Make sure these potential future candidates join your talent community, and ensure you have continual touch points to stay top of mind until your company has a relevant open position. Send them regular communication that might include updates on company awards or accolades, open positions, industry events or networking opportunities. Regularly update your careers page to ensure it reflects your current recruitment marketing efforts.

Create a candidate communication plan

Transparency is key for a successful candidate communication strategy. Make sure every candidate you meet with understands the hiring process, provide them with updates on a regular basis, and offer the opportunity for candidates to provide feedback post-interview process, so you can continue to refine your process.

Create an interview training program for employees

Your employees should be clear in their understanding of the qualifications that your company requires during the selection and interview process. Develop an interview training program for new hiring managers, new employees and first-time interviewees. This training will ensure every candidate’s interview experience remains consistent and aligned with your organization’s missions and goals. Leverage talent acquisition software to train your team more effectively by using fewer systems.

Are you ready to streamline your recruitment process and gear up for a successful fall recruitment season? Download the Talent Acquisition Buy-In Guide for the latest in talent acquisition and recruiting software!