Friday, August 14, 2009

Recruiting Sessions

Attending recruiting sessions is important; after all, you get free stuff (I almost won a Wii once). It not only lets people at the firms get to know you but it gives you an opportunity to get to know them. Some of you might be thinking, I don’t care which firm I work for, as long as I get a job. Now this may be true, but after meeting with representatives from each firm, you might find that one firm is a better fit for you then another.

Most people understand the importance of recruiting sessions and take the time to attend them. That being said, as opposed to stressing the significance of them, the following are some things I did in preparation for/ at, recruiting sessions that I found useful:

Business Cards

      Creating a business card is so simple and doesn’t cost that much. All you need on them is your name, address, email, phone number, school name and your graduating year. When I was in second year some of the recruiters were impressed that I was handing out business cards. However, nowadays it has become the standard, which probably means you should be doing it too!


      Ask thoughtful, meaningful and interesting questions. You have to keep in mind that the people you are meeting are likely doing more than one recruiting event in the same week. They know that they will be bombarded by the same questions repeatedly. So try to be unique. Just because you are at a CA event does not mean that is all you have to talk about.  For example, in second year, I spent some time talking to one of the recruiters about hockey. It turned out that we were both fans of a team outside of our area – he remembered me in third year and fourth year as well. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s important to ask questions about the firm, what they offer and the other usual stuff (i.e., UFE preparation programs, extracurricular activities etc…). In the end, your goal is to demonstrate that you are intelligent and have exceptional communication skills, regardless of what you talk about.

      Post Information Session           

      Ask every single person you meet, whether it is the head recruiter, a junior accountant or an intern, for a business card. After the event, send them an email thanking them for taking the time to meet with you. Just like the business cards, everyone does this, so you should probably be doing it too.

      The Not So Hidden Secret To Recruiting Events

      Now, many people might know this not so hidden secret, but I was unaware of it when I first attended the recruiting sessions. After every recruiting event the firm’s representatives that attended  (i.e., staff members) are asked, in one way or another, to provide the names of people they think would make a good fit for the firm. The recruiters then make a special effort to look at the resumes of these people and potentially offer them an interview. This is why, as I mentioned earlier, it is important to not only speak to recruiters but also to co-op students, interns, juniors, seniors, partners etc…

To reiterate, the above are some of the things I did in preparation for / at recruiting sessions. Please feel free to provide comments on some of the things you did prior to or at recruiting sessions which may help those in future events. 


  1. Bonus tip: if you're going to bother with business cards, make them cool. Since everyone has them now, if it's boring/ugly, you won't stand out.

    Photo business cards? It's not a crazy idea. Let's see if any surface in the fall season...

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