Career Portal

A smart and easy platform to help scientists and others apply for a job.

Overview

The design of the career portal for NTT Research solved many problems that had manifested over the years. It aimed to modernize the hiring process by bringing a new design system, to the forefront and was built on top of a new web app.  The career portal was one of the important products of NTT Research which helped them to keep track of all applications, jobs, and so on. The main goal was to get rid of all manual hustle and turn it into automated system.

My Role

User Research, Ideation, Visual Design, Prototyping and User Testing

Team : 1 designer, 2 Product Managers

Duration and Type : 6 weeks | Product Design, UI/UX, and Visual Design

Tools : Figma, Zeplin, Jira, Miro, Google Meet

Deliverables

  1. Create a user-facing web app where customers can come and apply for jobs for open positions.
  2. A Design web platform for HR (Human Resource team) so the team can track all job applications and take appropriate actions on them.
  3. The website page so the HR team can add all job posts for users.

Design Process

01 Empathize & Research

Research Plan

Research enables me to dig deep into my understanding of users – not only their immediate frustrations, but also their hopes, fears, abilities, limitations, reasoning, and goals. It lays essential foundations for creating solutions in later stages.

Research Goals

  • Understand the market and identify target groups
  • Uncover HR’s hiring experience
  • Learn about how NTT’s existing hiring process cater to users’ needs as well as their strengths and weaknesses
  • Learn about the preferences, frustrations, goals, needs, and motivations of target groups

Secondary Research

The first part was to understand what difference will it make? Having a own job portal vs posting job to 3rd party career portals.

Primary Research

User Interviews

In order to learn about the hiring experiences, people have had while recruiting candidates. We recruited 5 participants for user interviews. Here, I focused on asking open-ended questions about their experiences to learn as much as possible about our users.

User Interview Summary

  • 5 Participants were interviewed about their daily routine and hiring process
  • Interviews were based on open-ended questions
  • 2 males, 3 females
  • Age: 26 – 53
  • Duration: 30 – 45 min

Empathy Map

To synthesize all the information I had gathered from the user interviews, I wrote my findings on sticky notes and created an empathy map. By identifying common patterns across my findings, I was able to uncover key insights which helped me understand about users are and what they truly need.

From the major patterns that I identified from the empathy map, I discovered the following key insights which helped me to understand what the user’s needs are:

Problem Space

I identified three primary problems with the current system.

Frame 28

Time Consuming

The overall process starts from adding a job post on the sites, and hiring a shortlisted candidate for a job takes a lot of time and effort.

Frame 27

Manual

Currently, managing job applications takes a lot of manual effort via excel and multiple email chains.

Frame 26

Cluttered

A user felt the system was cluttered and overwhelming, especially when hiring a single candidate required posting a job on multiple 3rd party websites.

Opportunity

How might we make full system FAST, AUTOMATED, and MINIMAL?

User Persona

User research was essential. Here, the complex workflows of all user types and their interaction with one another needed to figure out and understand in detail. To achieve that, I collected as much as I could from users to understand their pain points and how they see the platform to achieve their goal.

UX Personx

02 Define & Ideate

How Might We...

The research we conducted helped me understand the needs of the features for HR. Talking to NTT stakeholders Chris and Lauren helped me identify some key insights.

  • The current hiring process is so manual that it makes it difficult to make the hiring process faster.
  • There are more to the hiring process than just normal application tracking and submission. HR needs to save the application for 3 years as per law, plus each application requires a lot of documents and video submissions and more.

Product Goals

At this point, I started laying out a strategy to help determine what goals I’m trying to meet and to help me determine which solutions I need to prioritize.
Then, I started by defining the project goals to get a clear understanding of what we’re trying to achieve and where the business and user goals align.

Application Map

After defining the How might we.. and deciding what features to include, I want to continue building up the structure of app using the application map. An application map helps me to visualize the relationship between the content and examine the hierarchy.

Solution

We converted our key problems into opportunities to solve for during the redesign.

Time Consuming > Fast

The new system should have all features that 3rd party job site has like adding the job to the website, managing job applications, etc.

Manual > Automated

The new system should be automated where users can log in and manage all their activities in one place without having to manage excel or email chains.

Cluttered > Minimal

The new system and hiring process should be minimal and without much effort so HR can finish their job in time, and a new user can apply for the job without much effort.

03 Design

Early Concepts

Using the insights I collected from the initial user research, I began creating user flows.

After having a go-ahead from the Product Manager, developers, and Stakeholders on the mockups, we began to conduct usability tests with the low-fidelity mockups. Once we had confidence in the design, we started digitalizing designs.

UI Components

04 Prototype & Test

Job Application Portal

Application Form

Based on research, I divided the big list of details required for a job application into a few meaningful categories. Categories like Personal Details, Education and Training Details, Employment Details, Skills and Links, Documents and Video, etc. Dividing a full job application form into these categories helps us to improve the experience for the user.

Record and Upload Video to Application

The video was one of the mandatory parts of the job application. To successfully submit their job application user will have to talk about themselves, their goals and why they want to work with NTT for at least 2-minute video.

There were two options for a user to achieve their goal:

  • Upload video or link from another source.
  • Record video in job portal

HR Portal

Dashboard

A dashboard is a place to get a glance at HR’s daily hiring process status.

A dashboard show overview of :

  • Job posts overview: Active and draft job posts
  • Applications overview: Shortlisted and hired applications
  • Top active job posts for daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly

Active Job Posts

This module helps HR to add new job post on the NTT Research site and also keep track of existing active job posts and take appropriate action on them.

Manage Applicants Data

A manage applicant module helps HR needs to keep track of all applicants who applied, hired and rejected for any role. As per government law, HR needs to keep the application for three years in their system once the applicant leaves a job. So, they can change status within single click.

High Fidelity Designs

This module helps HR to add new job post on the NTT Research site and also keep track of existing active job posts and take appropriate action on them.

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notification
email design

Reflection & Next Steps

As someone who had no idea of how hiring process works, I had to learn through research to gain a more better understanding. Both secondary and primary research were key in getting up to speed and being able to empathize with HR’s experiences.

Overall, project was a lot of fun to work on – building an full system from applicant, HR to Admin from start to finish, and talking to stakeholders, users were eye opening process. I look forward to continuing to work on this to evolve project.

Hand-Off

After validating the design, I would hand-off the design to developement team and start working on marketing layouts.

Product Launch

After the app has been built, we will introduce the new product to the market.

Add Features

After app has launched, I would discuss with stakeholders to understand phase 2 requirements and prioritize delivery.

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