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      Iowa Works Job Fair attracts hundreds

      The Bridge View Center was swarming with hundreds of hopeful employees and employers from more than 55 southeast Iowa companies at the Iowa Works Job Fair on Thursday.

      According to the Iowa Workforce Development, the jobless rates in Wapello County and the city of Ottumwa both fell to 6 1/2 % or less in March.

      Despite improvement locally, no place in southeast Iowa has unemployment rates anywhere near the statewide rate of 4.9%.

      â??There's all kinds of jobs out there and people just need to come to events like this and again just like an interview, they should have their resume with them, they should be prepared to ask employers about the company and they should know something about the companies that theyâ??re applying to. But this just shows we've got jobs with over that many employers here. We've got a lot of jobs out in our 10-county area,â?? said Linda Rouse, Regional Manager at Iowa Works Southern Iowa.

      For employers, coming prepared is key. You never know if this could be your future boss.

      â??In some sorts, this is sort of a short interview so they are kind of marketing themselves as they come to us you know. Just as we're marketing ourselves to them, they're marketing themselves to us,â?? said Natan Miller, IHCC Program Coordinator.

      There's still more to do after a job fair if you want to be the candidate to really stand out in an employerâ??s eyes.

      â??Definitely need to follow up with employers after you leave the job fair just like you would in an interview. They're making time out of their day to be here to make their connections with you so getting their contact information, sending them a thank you note, sending them an email, just making that connection so they know that you value their presence here today,â?? said Cassandra Halls, To the Top Career Advancement Strategies.

      If you couldnâ??t make it to the job fair, thereâ??s no need to fret.

      â??If you can't make it to the job fair, come see us at the Iowa Works building. We're located right across the street from Job Corps and staff is always ready to help, help you out with your employment needs,â?? said Rouse.