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Britain’s royal couple to visit Los Angeles military veterans’ job fair

Prince William and Catherine

After a stop to play polo, Prince William and his wife, Catherine will visit a job fair for U.S. military veterans.

Once again the royals are providing business writers with a timely news peg.

Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, reportedly will be helping out at a  job fair for veterans when their royal tour stops in Los Angeles on July 10.   Between that and the critical mass of routine employment reports due out this week, your market is probably ripe for another jobs or employment story.

It’s can be daunting to think of fresh angles to a perennial story, even when it’s the story of the year.  The jobs fair angle is one we haven’t  hit lately and offers the chance to find real job seekers and employers who are in the market for new workers all under one roof, which makes it easier for you to spot trends in terms of positions open, demographics of those seeking work, the changing application process, qualification requirements and other angles of the job hunt of interest to your audience.  (It’s  also a story rife with sidebar possibilities, from dos and don’ts for applicants to a sampling of available jobs and their pay/benefits.)

The L.A. event the royals are slated to attend is part of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce “Hiring our Heroes” campaign which debuted earlier this year; it’s a nationwide effort to provide jobs for servicepeople.  Here’s a month-by-month list of fairs scheduled for 2011; check it out and bookmark any in your area.

You can check with your state workforce commission about other fairs, or check out directories and listings offered bycommercial outfits like National Career Fairs; a site called Recruiters Network offers this list of links to other job fair operators and sites. (Note: A related story might be ‘the business of job fairs’ – who are these organizations and what is their business model?)

Another angle (especially if you are focusing on recent university and professional school grads) is the “virtual career fair” such as the one organized by the Society of Automotive Engineers. “Exhibitors” who pay $2,500 an up will get an online exhibition booth and the opportunity to present in the auditorium; the SAE’s 2010 virtual fair is online if you choose to view it to gather ideas.  A quick Google search shows other organizations and employers adopting smiliar tactics; the ins and outs of navigating a virtual fair and human resource managers’ take on the difference between live and online recruiting would make for a good feature.

Related to the jobs story and in the “how did I miss this?” category:  Last month Manpower Inc. released its quarterly employment outlook survey which includes regional findings.  Here’s a link to the survey site if you haven’t checked it out already; the data will add context to any local hiring story and being a quarterly report, it’s not yet outdated or stale.

About the Author

Veteran financial writer Melissa Preddy served as a business writer, editor and columnist for The Detroit News from 1995 to 2008, is a Michigan-based freelance journalist. She now works as a writer and editor for a medical research unit of the University of Michigan Medical School. Follow her daily posts. | E-mail: Melissa Preddy

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