Jul 22, 2022 • Blog

Top 10 UX Tips For Job Portal Search Engines

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With UK job vacancies hitting a high in June 2022, increasing pressure is placed on recruiters to find candidates and fill roles quickly. This pressure falls heavily on job portal product managers and UX designers – who must design a portal that can match the best candidates to the best open positions in record timing.  

With job search sites overflowing with open vacancies; job-seekers need a navigation and filtering experience that enables them to find the right roles quickly and efficiently.  

This climate provides a huge opportunity for the recruitment sector overall.  But job search portals need to work harder than ever to attract recruiters amongst the noise.  A promise of relevant and appropriate candidates, alongside impressive site impressions and clicks, can only be delivered with effective product and UX design.

We’ve reviewed some well-known job search portals and recruitment company websites, to conclude a top 10 roundup of great UX design features to ensure recruiters find the right applicant.

1. Totaljobs.com: Personalisation

Totaljobs.com encourages registration up-front for a more personalised job search experience.  Once signed-up, the user has easy access to their personalized job search page every time they visit the site.  This features a clear and well-designed display of ‘recommended jobs’, an area for ‘saved jobs’ (where the user has indicated interest, but not yet applied), job alert preferences and jobs ‘applied for’.  All of these features make the individual’s job search feel more relevant, which is key for conversion and clicks.  It also encourages browsing, to feed the recommended dynamic content of the page.

totaljobs interface

2. Monster.co.uk: Simplification of Navigation

When searching for a job, the results are displayed on the left hand side.  When clicking on a job to see more detail, the full job description is displayed to the right of the search results, without taking the user to another page.  This not only encourages users to keep browsing, it also prevents navigation loss and constantly back-paging to go back to the search results.  Several online job portals use this as an effective way to streamline the job search process.

job search user interface

3. Totaljobs.com: Commute Times

Totaljobs’ search tools include a ‘commute time’ filter, enabling the job-seeker to indicate travel time criteria.  This can be based on walking, cycling, car travel or public transport.  While distance is commonly used in a similar way, travel time aims to present a more relatable understanding of how accessible the job location is. Many job locations could be dismissed based on distance, when in fact, it’s often the time it’ll take to get there that’s more important (think working parents on a pick-up schedule, with a strict half hour window for their commute). The tool aims to reduce bounce rates from the job listing page, eradicating the user’s need to cross-check a location’s travel time on Google Maps.  

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listing search
job search interface

4. Indeed.com: Prominence for Salary & Role Type Information

Indeed.com's search results usually display salary (if provided by the recruiter) and role type (permanent, part time etc) in clear grey roundels to apply more prominence.  This enables visual filtering and helps roles to stand out to those looking for a specific salary or working arrangement. A Glassdoor study showed that 67% of job-seekers actively look for salary information when searching for a job.  The COVID pandemic has introduced new and more flexible working practices to both employers and job-seekers, making flexibility and working arrangements a key consideration when job-hunting.  Indeed’s job descriptions also include bold highlighting on words that were searched for by the user in the main search box.

job listing

5. ZipRecruiter: One Click Applications

Alongside other job search portals, ZipRecruiter uses location technology to predict which location a customer is searching from.  This auto-populates the job-seeker’s location at the initial search stage, requiring only ‘job title’ and ‘distance from location’ to be added.  This creates efficiency at the search stage and helps prevent accidental applications, where the job itself may appeal to the applicant, but they’ve failed to acknowledge the location.

ZipRecruiter user interface

6. Reed.co.uk: Salary Filter

Another handy tool for those searching based on salary criteria; Reed’s search options include a ‘Minimum’ / ‘Maximum’ salary filter. As you’d expect, this simply filters out employers who haven’t disclosed a salary, or those who don’t meet the job-seeker’s salary expectations. This increases the relevancy of the job search results page for the user. As a result, product managers can increase conversion rates (often measured as % of users that apply for roles). Their job postings are less at risk of being ‘filtered out’.

job search interface

7. Guardian Jobs: Clear Brand Representation

Guardian Jobs does a great job of promoting job-advertisers’ brands, simply by giving prominence to their logos. This encourages users to create an account with your job portal, as some job-seekers are attracted to bigger or specific brands. Brand logos are featured with visual impact within the search result job descriptions. Such prominence of branding will also be appealing to recruiters, demonstrating that the job-search platform places value on brand visibility.

3 job listings

8. Glassdoor: Employee Ratings

Glassdoor is primarily an online review platform for workers / employees to anonymously review and ‘rate’ an employer. Users can see employer ratings when viewing search results (in the abbreviated search results, an overall rating out of 5 is shown as a score of 1 to 5 stars). In the extended search results; the user can see employee ratings for career opportunities, salary & benefits, culture & values, and senior management.  This will enable Product Managers to add an extra layer of appeal to an advertised role, enhancing the company’s credibility as an employer and ultimately, driving conversions. Users can also search by company name, to view all positions available within that organisation.

glassdoor job search interface

9. Michael Page: Accessibility Tools

The Michael Page website includes an ‘Accessibility Tools’ feature for users with additional needs.  Clicking on the ‘Accessibility Tools’ button launches an additional menu, featuring multiple browsing enhancers for those with visual impairments, a language / translation tool and an English dictionary plug-in for looking-up words.  This aims to prevent alienation of users who need additional support when searching for a job.

search bar for selecting languages

10 Hired.com: A Different Approach

Hired.com approaches recruitment differently.  Job-seekers create a profile, upload their CV and provide information around what they’re looking for in a job.  Users can also include examples of work, portfolios or employer reviews.  

Hired.com uses algorithms that aim to match candidates with jobs based on the information the job-seeker has provided.  Profiles are then matched and presented to relevant employers, based on what they’re looking for. Recruiters will then review and approach candidates through the platform.  This is a great way to secure user registration up-front and drive instant conversion.  On most other job search portals, sign-up only occurs at the point of job application.  And for those who are measured on recruiter onboarding, the Hired.com formula enables the recruiter to select their own candidates, without being saturated with irrelevant applications.  The information provided by the applicant will also provide Hired.com with valuable job-seeker data, reinforcing AI and presenting a strong business case to recruiters.

hired_ sign up interface
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