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Beyond Localization

Timeline
May 2023- Dec. 2023
Roles
UX Designer
Responsibility
End to end UI/UX design
Company
Indeed

Overview

01 | Objective
The team wanted to redesign the existing search experience on Indeed for Japanese job seekers. Also, we wanted to refactor our infrastructure for the future scale.
02 | Role & Deliverables
In this project, I worked as a volunteer and closely with senior design, PM and four engineers. I was responsible for the end to end UX and UI design, from defining the problem to deliver the final visual artifact.
03 | Challenges
This project had quite a few technical dependencies with other teams & products, we also needed to deal with many prioritizations to make sure we can deliver MVP on time.
04 | Outcome & Impact
We launched the MVP in six months that increased our overall metrics significantly, especially it increased the revenue by 12%. We also received a lot of positive feedback from users.

Background

Indeed is one of the largest job search sites in the world, and it has launched its products to over 60 countries, Japan market is one of the high priority markets as the company strategy.
However, Indeed Japan site shared the codebase with the global Indeed site. It hasn't been optimized for the Japan market in terms of UI and UX since it has built.
The legacy Indeed Japan site's simplistic and unstructured design confuses Japanese job seekers, leaving them unsure of how to start their search.

Problem

1. Keyword-based search is unfamiliar to Japanese job seekers
The Indeed site has been keyword-based from its inception, aiding job seekers in finding relevant results when they know precisely what they are looking for.  However, Japanese users prefer a browsing and filtering experience over keyword searches, and many struggle with deciding what to enter in the keyword boxes.
2. Information is unstructured and insufficient
The information we displayed on the job card was unstructured and lack of visual hierarchy. It caused a lot of cognitive load to users and it was not scannable. They couldn't easily skim through the jobs and find out the one that interests them.
3. Lack of essential elements
There were tons of essential elements in our site were missing. For example, photos and job-related filters are crucial for the job seeker, but they were not available on our site. Additionally, the overall look and feel of our site were not familiar to Japanese job seekers in comparison to other local job sites.

Goal

Launch the new search experience(MVP) that meets Japanese job seekers' expectations.

Outcome

Before
After
Overall, users spent more time on our site, viewed, saved and applied for more jobs, demonstrating compelling evidence of increased engagement and satisfaction with their job search experience on Indeed.
Feature A- The tapping experience for location search
Users can click on the location picker to trigger the location pane, we created a linear flow to drill down their preferred location from region to district.
We enhanced the existing radius function's visibility and intuitiveness to help users narrow down their selected areas more effectively. After launching the MVP, we plan to introduce station/train route search features to simplify the job search process for part-time job seekers, making it easier to find relevant jobs.
Feature B-Filtering experience
Filters are highly requested by our users and are a standard feature on local job boards. The keyword search method, requiring inputs for "where" and "what," is unfamiliar to Japanese job seekers, who often struggle to articulate their search criteria through keywords.
Filters enable job seekers to easily choose criteria that match their preferences and conditions, sparing them the effort of brainstorming terms for the keyword box. We aim to offer various filters to help job seekers quickly narrow down search results.
Feature C-A scannable job description
Job descriptions are crucial for Japanese job seekers, who carefully evaluate them to determine their fit for a position. At Indeed, the aggregation of listings from multiple sources led to unstructured job descriptions, posing a challenge in maintaining uniformity and consistency.
We created a "title & content pair" enhancer and apply this new rule to all jobs, which makes the jobs at Indeed look more consistent no matter where are the jobs coming from.

Research

User Research
We conducted user research during the project's early phase to pinpoint core issues and understand job seekers' perceptions of our product. Here's what we discovered:
We collaborated with a vendor to conduct user interviews and synthesized the insights to create a Jobseeker Journey Map. This tool helped our team gain a deeper understanding of the problems faced by users.
Job boards in Japan are vibrant and informative, offering job seekers various easy ways to start their search.

Hypothesis

01
Improving the UI/visual design and show more structured information will help job seekers easier find jobs that fit them.
02
Introducing the tapping experience will help job seekers better express themselves, narrow down their search results easier, eventually they will see more relevant jobs and apply more.

Principles

The following principles are what I complied when I was designing the new experience
01 | Consistent
Even though we're designing for the Japanese market which is very unique, we still need to align with the global brand at the foundation level to make sure we have a consistent experience across devices, countries, and products.
02 | Accessible
Japanese job seeker used to see a lot of content on one page, we want to make sure the navigation is intuitive, and present the important function as the way they used to see.
03 | Clear
Japanese job seekers read every piece of content carefully, the copies we provide need to be concise and clear, the wordings we're using should be consistent and understandable.

MVP

Rich Design on mobile web
Following several team discussions, we defined a feasible MVP for timely delivery, dubbed "Rich Design." This initiative focuses on crafting a modern UI with richer content that is more usable and familiar to Japanese users, encompassing:
💡 Why did we start with mobile web?
Given that 80% of our traffic came from mobile devices, and 82% of them came from the mobile web(Indeed app is around 18%, and a lot of job seekers use smartphones as their first option to browse and search the job.

So the team decided to focus on mobile web redesign first, then bring those new changes to other platforms such as desktop and app once we see the positive signal from the experiments.
1 | Introduce browse experience
The new design features user-friendly location and filter boxes at the forefront, with a keyword search option at the bottom, catering to Japanese users' preferences for a more familiar and trustworthy interface. A tap-based location picker further simplifies entering a desired location without typing.
2 | More visible filters
The MVP prioritizes transforming filters from simple "refinements" to a comprehensive filter box. Future enhancements will introduce more practical filters, including job tags, salary ranges, and job categories, for a more refined search experience.
3 | More rich & structured information on job cards
Our current job cards are minimal, unstructured, and difficult to navigate. The proposed new cards will offer more detailed information, particularly job tags, improved structure, and photos, enhancing readability. Future updates will focus on clearer labeling of Indeed-specific information.

Design
Deliverables

Here are the key initiatives we've launched in MVP and some following improvements:
Introduce the tapping experience for location search
For years, users had to manually type in location keywords to search for jobs on Indeed, a method not preferred by Japanese job seekers. A key change in our redesign is introducing a simpler search start method through a new location picker, allowing users to easily select their desired location.
Beyond search by keywords -  Filtering experience
Filters are highly requested by our users and are a standard feature on local job boards. The keyword search method, requiring inputs for "where" and "what," is unfamiliar to Japanese job seekers, who often struggle to articulate their search criteria through keywords.
A scannable job description
The team has been working on parsing jobs that we aggregated to our site, we wanted to extract the key information from jobs, then display them on top of the description in a meaningful and structured way to help job seekers easily skim through the job.

Takeaway

Leveraging Diverse Expertise Amid Uncertainty:
The project showcased the necessity of harnessing team expertise to navigate planning uncertainties and strategic decisions, emphasizing collaborative problem-solving in the face of challenges.
Risk-Taking Versus User-Centric Innovation:
It highlighted the balance between embracing risks with innovative changes and the imperative of aligning these changes with user feedback to ensure they meet the actual needs of the target audience.
Importance of Prioritization and Alignment:
The experience underlined the critical role of prioritization and team alignment on common goals to efficiently address challenges and foster a unified approach towards impactful product development.
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