TRR is a personal job coach. They are not looking for people to jump from job to job; they want you to find the career that works best for you and help you blossom into a new version of yourself. TRR achieves this through personalized coaching, guidance and training.
I was in a team of content creators producing web content to guide job seekers through the process to take the next step in their career. My role was to make ensure the content was digestable and findable by making the team empathizing with their readers.
Covid hits the labor market
This project with TRR started in 2020 when the Covid pandemic hit the job market. TRR realized they needed to enable job-seekers with more independence. They already had a pre-existing web application but as it had grown organically it was difficult to navigate. We started off with conducting user research and looked into the quantitative data to learn about the user needs and how the current website was performing.
With more and more job-seekers relying on TRR to reach their next step in their career, we knew that redesigning the website would increase its efficacy. The issues identified from our research were:
- Job-seekers didn’t find the content to be useful
- Bad website navigation
- Low use frequency
- Outdated content
- No personal approach
Part I: Creating Guiding Content
It's not easy to go through a job loss. With so much uncertainty in the air, you want to know what to do next and how to get back on your feet. The aim of this project was to guide job-seekers to take the next step in their careers. We wanted to provide the users with a basic guide to help them; a guide that provides easily-digestible resources and enables them to take more control of their own journey. The process went like this:
1) Sketching the User Story from Best Practise
The first thing we did was to examine the current journey for our users together with advisors from TRR who have experience guiding job-seekers. I facilitated User Story Mapping sessions together with the advisors to sketch the journey from the point when an individual lost their job, to setting a goal and ultimately reaching it.
2) Interview job-seekers and collect Quantitative data
I interviewed current job-seekers and collected quantitative data from Google Analytics in order to better understand the biggest pain points during the different phases of the job-search process. These insights were used by the team to prioritize what to start with first.
3) Define Jobs-to-be-done
For the next step, I introduced the Jobs-to-be-done method. The method is best defined as a perspective, a lens through which you can define user goals. Job-seekers use our product to get a job done. In our case, examples of goals are to create the perfect resume or Linkedin profile. The content we created is intended to help them accomplish their goals. Through this method we were able to keep focused on what's most important and cut out unnecessary content.
4) Rapidly build something
We needed to quickly build something to test our ideas, so we did. We had no ideas of groundbreaking interaction design in this project. Instead, our challenge was to keep the content relevant and easily-digestible. But also to make sure users found the right content to solve their tasks.
As soon as we had the first drafts of content, I started to make prototypes in Figma which I regularly tested with users. This created a feedback loop and helped us evaluate the structure and content with rapid speed.
5) Guiding Principles
My research results indicated that users don't start reading from the beginning of page. Readers skim content rather than read every word.
They search for certain keywords to get an overview of what is covered in the paragraph. With this in mind, I came up with guiding principles for the content creators in my team. Here are a few examples:
- Make sure headlines are clear and direct. Use bullet points and highlight important information.
- Don’t bore the audience. Use an active voice, describe exactly what the reader needs to do next and how they can accomplish it.
- Provide links to other pages with additional information for readers who want to learn more about at topic.
Part II: Solution
We have developed a step-by-step guide that describes how to create a resume and personal letter, how to adapt these to an application, and tips for when preparing for a job interview. We also decided to make all the content available to the public, there is no longer a need for TRR users to log in every time time they want to access it. To support a smooth skimming and reading experience, we also introduced a few UI components in the design system:
- In-page links to help the user find the content they are searching for.
- Highlighted information and tips.
- CTAs to products behind login, to create resumes, personality tests or finding job ads.
Part III: Result and Key Takeways
The result of this project has been very positive in two directions: this project is improving the independence and control of people who struggle with their job search. It has resulted in a relief of workloads for TRR's advisors, who are now able to focus on qualitative time with job-seekers rather than emailing PDF files and repeatedly answering recurring questions.
The second impact was a culture change at TRR. We started to collaborate across functions, using an agile approach to content creation. This taught the team how to use user-centered methods and brought non-designers closer to the users.
Some other things I take with me are:
- How to apply Jobs-to-be-done to keep focused and scope the challenge.
It was difficult for the content writers to get a hang of how to define the jobs at first. But once we got a hang of it in the team it was incredible effective.
- It's always possible to define a smaller MVP.
We had a difficult time prioritizing the content, it resulted in a large MVP and a heavy workload to have all the content ready before release date. Looking back, I wish we made a stricter prioritizing to increase the quality.
- The power of engaging the team in UX research.
I invited non-designer team members to participate during the user tests and analysis. This increased the team's intrest to act on the learnings.
TRR is a non-profit foundation. They work with with employment transitions and working life, contributing to learning and mobility in the Swedish labor market. Their activities are aimed at companies in the private labor market, trade union representatives, and company employees. Learn more about TRR.