A Digital yet Familiar CV Scanning Experience

My role

For this project I reshaped the information architecture, created prototypes with Axure, usability tested the product with recruiters, and brought the concept to life with the final visual design using Sketch. I shared the rolls of concept development and interaction design with then head of design Daniel Miebach.


I recognized an opportunity for faster interactions with candidate profiles by making the navigation more meaningful for recruiters.

Recruiters navigating through the old interface

Going from one candidate profile to another could take up to 16 seconds of navigating and loading. That’s a lot of time for recruiters who often only spend a few seconds scanning a CV for the first time. (https://cdn.theladders.net/static/images/basicSite/pdfs/TheLadders-EyeTracking-StudyC2.pdf)


The original solution required more effort from recruiters than their traditional workflows.


To improve the workflow we rediscovered the primary use case and built our navigation to support those actions.

The “job filter” was by far the most used filter.

Our recruiters were attending to the candidates of one job and then another. Their mental model of this interaction seemed to be based on the paper analog. Scanning through stacks of CVs organized by job. This finding would guide the proposed navigation scheme.

The proposed information architecture added the step of selecting a job before seeing the list of candidates. A job would act like a folder for the candidate profiles.

Iteration began with a focus on improving the “scanning candidate profiles” use case.

One iteration envisioned the recruiter being able to simultaneously see the list of candidates and a detailed view of a selected candidate profile at the same time.

That iteration became a Axure prototype — exploring the idea of viewing both the candidate list and one candidate profile simultaneously.


The product architecture now more closely reflects the mental model of our recruiters scanning workflow.

Clicking on one of the search profiles loads a subpage with all the job candidates organized in tabs throughout each stage of the application process.

Clicking on a candidate in the list opens their profile as an overlay. We decided on an overlay instead of a 2 column view to help keep recruiters focused on their candidates’ content, without pulling them completely out of context.

It is no longer necessary to reload the list of candidates after viewing a candidate profile. They stay right there in the background as navigation elements.

After viewing 5 candidate profiles in a row an intercom message appeared with the key shortcut tip.

A front end developer on the team came up with a great idea to quickly navigate from one profile to another. He built a keyboard shortcut so that routine users could use the left and right arrow keys to navigate through the list of profiles without leaving the overlay view.

To help onboard recruiters to the new experience I suggested integrating Intercom, and set up automated messages to let recruiters know about the changes to the architecture and the keyboard shortcut.

Key takeaways

  • Onboard users in the right context. We used to inform users about new features at the start of a new session using a modal with graphics and text. These were usually totally out of context, and only possible to build with the help of a designer (me), and frontend dev. and backend dev.. After integrating intercom anyone on the product team was able to write a message and contextually target them for specific user groups. A huge timesaver for developers and myself.

Thank you for reading

You too? Let’s get in touch ✉️ linkedin.com/in/ryanthurmer/

I have a passion for exploring the 🌍, experiencing people through their food, music, art and surroundings. I dive, hike and mountain climb when I’m not working on a project. I cook something new every day and can’t remember the last time I left the house without a camera. 📷 instagram.com/kater_rhein

I am Digital Product Designer at OBI Next in Cologne, Germany. ryanthurmer.com

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