Record number of candidates vie for jobs at Canadian Virtual Career Expo

Almost nine thousand job seekers participated in In-TAC’s fourth Virtual Career Expo in April, tripling the number from last year.

The two-day event, hosted by the International Talent Acquisition Centre (In-TAC), gave candidates from around the world the opportunity to compete online for 2000 job opportunities in Canada.

“Participants are armed with only an Internet connected device and a cup of coffee,” said Ying Xie, Senior Manager at In-TAC.“Our goal is to provide a platform for Canadian businesses to access talent from around the globe and combat the challenges of the skill shortage in Canada.”

The level of enthusiasm by both job seekers and employers demonstrates that the cyber hiring process is a big hit. In-TAC is already planning a fifth Virtual Career Expo.

Closing the skills gap 

For employers, the virtual job fair provides an efficient way to review candidates, without the costs of transportation and displays at on-site events. The event attracted well-known Canadian businesses such as Air Canada, Canada Post and the top three banks. Multinational companies with offices in Canada also participated, including IBM, Microsoft, Fortinet, Syntronic and Aramark.

Employers were seeking to fill professional to skilled trades positions located in 105 cities and municipalities across Canada. Many were looking for highly-skilled technology workers from Canada and abroad.

During the peak of the Career Expo, there were over 4,700 concurrent logins. To handle the demand, employers kept their virtual booths open 16 hours each day and had as many as eight representatives online to manage the overwhelming number of requests.  

Virtual event:  real results 

Xie said the past three virtual job fairs have produced strong results, and he expects them to be even better this year. During the event, there were over 61,000 visits to the exhibit booths and 13,000 online job applications were received. An exit survey showed that more than 400 applicants were selected by employers for further consideration, including online and live interviews.

“This was state of the art technology and an excellent use of time and resource,” said one employer. More than 95 per cent of the exhibitors said they would like to attend a similar event in the future. They clearly endorsed the effectiveness of this strategy to bridge the talent gap and address the shortage of top-notch talent in Canada, said Xie.

Leaders across Canada sent welcome messages to job seekers from around the world to encourage their candidacy and to support immigrant diversity in Canada. “I am certain that all participants will enjoy this unique networking opportunity,” wrote Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Trudeau went on to thank the organizers. “Your efforts are helping to create a more prosperous Canada for us all.”

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Cindy Baker
Cindy Baker
Cindy Baker has over 20 years of experience in IT-related fields in the public and private sectors, as a lawyer and strategic advisor. She is a former broadcast journalist, currently working as a consultant, freelance writer and editor.

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