WATERVILLE — Central Maine Growth Council is leveraging the success of its 2019 Maine Virtual Job Fair pilot to launch a full-scale recruitment fair on Wednesday, Feb. 26.

The first of its kind in Maine, the 2019 pilot connected employers with more than 200 job-seekers and graduating students via a video chat platform that eliminated geography, transportation, climate, and time barriers inherent in the job and talent search, according to a news release from the council.

The job fair, a project of the council and sponsored by MaineJobs, marries the interactive aspect of traditional job fairs with the conveniences of technology. Conceived within the context of Maine’s workforce shortage, the job fair makes it easy to meet job candidates where they are.

“The companies participating in the Maine Virtual Job Fair are extremely forward-thinking and adaptive to their workforce’s needs,” said Elaine Theriault-Currier, development coordinator at Central Maine Growth Council. “Their innovative recruitment strategies reflect strong, mindful company cultures and position them as top employers within the state,” according to the release.

The web page centralmaine.org/mvjf is the portal to connect employers and job-seekers. Job-seekers can browse open positions of participating employers and schedule video chat appointments with recruiters for Feb. 26. The flexibility of time and location is key to reaching Maine’s workforce, most of which is already employed, making it difficult to attend physical workforce recruitment fairs.

Yet, the difficulty of finding employees has widened employers’ scope to include markets and audiences not previously targeted, particularly those potential employees still in school. High schools, colleges, and universities throughout Maine are invited to connect with employers through the video chat platform. Students can explore career paths, learn how their course concepts are applied in the real world, and inquire about job openings for current and graduating students.

For those without access to internet or computers, Central Maine Growth Council has partnered with a statewide network of libraries and CareerCenters to bring Maine Virtual Job Fair to all interested job seekers. For a list of participating service centers, call 680-7300.

Interested job-seekers can browse participating employers and open positions on the Maine Virtual Job Fair web page.

Employers interested in more information or participating in the fair can contact Elaine Theriault-Currier at etcurrier@centralmaine.org or 680-7300.

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