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Job Seeker Dashboard

– A New Product Born of Research



The case for the dashboard, the job search organizer, and opportunity cost​

Case for Dashboard​


Why would jobseekers want a subscription?​

  • 90% of jobseekers use a generic resume and custom cover letter ​
  • Recruiters and hiring managers report they open 17% of cover letters​
  • Average customization time without tool ranges 4 – 72 hours​
  • 15 minutes to design, format and populate content in our builders​

Dashboard now creates customized resumes and submits from job listings in a few moments​

+1.6% Observed (dashboard traffic) CVR​
2.04% RC1 (subscription after 4 weeks)​
-3.1% cancellations​
Annual projection $5M x 6

Phase 1


  • Understand pain points in journey​
  • Propose business model​
  • Create models for co-design​
  • Design to scale

Proposed Roadmap Sprints H2

  • Models of retention​
  • Review of secondary sources​
  • User Archetypes​
  • Builder redesign data model for job mapping​
  • Comparative audit & score card​
  • Mental models of dashboard ​
  • Low-fidelity models​
  • Discount Guerrilla –
  • Mental Models ​
  • Workshop data for stakeholder​
    Why – ​
    – Did not understand dashboard purpose ​
    – Generate research roadmap ​
    – Learning milestones​

Activity after CVR

Most of our customers do not return after making one resume – ​
By the end of Recurring Charge 1, only 17 people return to make another resume​
These might be people making custom resumes for others​

Retention Over Time

Additionally, we see significant cancellation by RC1; if we can get them to stay with the subscription, we will really grow.​
To understand who, how, and why, I started creating archetypes from existing data sets at the Bureau of Labor Statistics​

Segmentation for Archetypes

The studies I reviewed indicated that age and SES were reliable for identifying employment and the amount of time spent on the job search​
In sharing this, we wanted to see if this worked in our product.

Predict, Personalize, and Optimize Subscription​

Job seekers typically send applications at seven-day intervals​

  • 4 week search duration average .8 applications per cycle.​
  • 13 week search duration average 1.3 applications per cycle​
  • 26 cycle search duration average 1.5 applications per cycle​
  • 44 week search duration average 2.3 applications per cycle​

An average job search is 5-15 weeks depending upon:​

  • Depth of experience and perceived salary requirements​
  • Network​
  • Geographical demand for your skills​
  • Time of year​
  • Age discrimination ​
  • Employability / self-deception​

Employability and income effects impact intensity. ​

  • Males, 60 and older, unemployed, and coming from a long-tenured job are more likely to be significantly impacted with awareness of low employability and Income Effects, have longer duration searches, and submit more applications over the duration of the search.
    • Faberman, R. Jason, Marianna Kudlyak. 2016. “The Intensity of Job Search and Search Duration.” Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco Working Paper 2016-13.

    Archetype Roles

    Most likely to have a longer search (up to 24 weeks)  defined expectations about what they want to do for work, with whom, how much they make,  and how it relates to their larger goals.

    More of a generalist approach (up to 14 weeks), where they may have specialized training and experience, but industry and role are not as important. A job seeker may have a secondary search strategy for hit or miss applications to support targeted search.

    This jobseeker has likely been searching for a 12 months or more. ​They are looking for anything.

    Faultline Structured Interview​

    Contextual inquiry​
    Worksforce Center, St.Paul, MN​
    December. Threshold sampling, 45 users, 60% F,
    online-in-person moderated,​
    Chi Sq. RYG

    When asked what they would change, respondents are consistent in behavior and circumstance to create alternatives to reality and imagine how events might have turned out “if only” something had been different. This method is about how people imagine alternatives to reality for motivation and level setting​.

    Phase 2

    Proposed Roadmap Sprints H2​

    • Diary study workshop​
      Why: ​
      – Identify pain points, mental models, and workarounds​
      – Create customer journey framework​
    • Diary study implementation​
      -Validate workshop predictions​
    • Architecture feasibility​
      -Models for testing​


    • Understand pain points in jobseeker journey​
      – Validate themes​
      – Design to scale ​

    What should a dashboard do?

    Each of the four product teams were given a vehicle: ​

    • Snowmobile, Spaceship, Cargo Ship, and Airplane​

    A useful dashboard should:​

    • Inform progress toward my goals​
    • Identify goals, create milestones, and course correct​
    • Pathways, opportunity costs, reality check, current state

    Themes from Workshop​

    Diary study endorsed​

    • Sampling, goals, questions, and metrics approved​

    A dashboard:​

    • Provides expert information on the journey​
    • Helps with goal setting ​
    • Automates complex activity​​

    Three archetypes approved​

    • Targeted – Focused, no hurry, likely employed, just looking​
    • Hit of Miss – Uncertain, flexible, looking for unskilled, has income level, might be second job​
    • Desperate – Anything, sooner the better, free falling​

    Job tenure, search frequency, and search duration predict:​

    • Job search activity​
    • Range of roles expand and application frequency (spam) increase with time ​
    • Job pathways are needed to help people make more money​
    • short-term behavior in service to long-term goals​
    • Career professional planning​
    • Focus on growth mindset reinforced with data to support subscription​

    Diary Study​

    Sorting & recruitment

    • 28 days, report 3x week
    • 18/589 participants chosen – 5/18 rejected, 5/568 more recruited.
    • Expected retention (12)  
    • Actual retention (16)
    • Recruited from D-Scout Panel`
    • Employed, Underemployed, Unemployed
    • Unskilled hourly, skilled hourly, salary
    • Days on search: 1-7, 8-60, 61-160, 180+
    • Jobs over last 5 years:  1-5
    • Age: 18 – 65
    • Location: USA 
    • Active daily search: multiple check ins daily



    • Video demonstrations, narratives, and mini surveys as scaling responses
    • Career ladder, progress index, satisfaction index, anxiety index


    Jobseeker Stories

    Customer Framework ​

    What was interesting is this model created a new double flywheel to bring subscription forward.
    Resume is how they get on, dashboard is why they stay.

    Seekers become aware of a need for change. They increase awareness of opportunity and risk. They begin looking and listening – searching the web, talking to trusted colleagues, family and friends. As seekers commit to the work of job search, they seek expertise. Expertise comes in the form of old templates, a confidante who is good at making a resume, leads on who might be hiring, job sites, and even a resume builder and cover letter. In many cases, expertise exists as an artifact– like a resume template –or the sought after knowledge of a confidante. What Is clear through this process is that people feel vulnerable and isolated, and lack the confidence to network and share their search and application activity. What is important in our expert system, as that we can quickly reduce their uncertainty in choice and behavior with out expertise. Just because a person con do something, this does not mean they should– time, effort and resources are not infinite. We can help them focus their effort; and create confidence with lists of effective short-term actions in service to long-term goals. This creates a job pathway and keeps them engaged in our expert system. i.e.  Even those seekers who lack education and experience, can start with a GED can start path towards professional salary. For example, starting as a hourly home health aid, can build a repertoire of skill and experience, leading to opportunities as a certified nursing assistant, an eventual role as an LPN, and maybe an RN. The creation of the pathway takes expertise and vision. Our expert system provides the vision by learning about their dreams and creating a path of action. This is invaluable to job seekers caught in the vicious cycle of day labor (gig work takes a lot of time and energy away from the effort required to conduct an effective job search). Our expert system aligns with their dreams to create attainable goals as a pathway to long term goals. We can provide lists of actions to create and build a career. What is important is that we provide feedback reinforcing positive –productive behavior. This messaging should be mediated through messaging as email, alerts, and IM. They should provide feedback utlizing behavioral economics (Thayer showed that 2 small positives of equal value to one larger positive have more impact. Also, one large negative has less impact than two smaller but summatively equal feedback – essential in sustaining engagement). This depends upon managing job search activity for the seeker. A CRM (customer relationship management system) can act as a true dashboard, suggesting and managing opportunity, feedback and interaction. The true dashboard creates visual representation of progress and possibility. 

    Our current dashboard provides the the much needed matching and jobs intent, but seekers still need a dashboard to gauge progress and effectiveness. Such a dashboard should be predicated upon email CRM. With a simple script, (ITTT) to create accounts and filters from different job boards facilitated through our Dashboard. This allows us to track activity, provide tool tips from message content for scheduling, preparation, appropriate response, and even negotiation. Most importantly, we will facilitate all of the job boards, and provide efficacy data while training our knowledge graph. Through this, we can align with seekers currently manage their search: email. We can allow them to receive notices, messaging, have a professional email, forwarded to their own email, a personal assistant that travels in their browsing, and a connection to trigger when they need our tools through ML and anticipatory design. Each message should connect with existing routines – we know that people look at their phines 80 times a day. We can calibrate optimal viewing and action times, and each email can have our assistant (hydra) to assist them in matching, tailoring, and direct apply. These actions can be tracked to create a document recording KPIs toward goals, as well as provide job market intelligence, opportunity cost, report and documentation – useful for submitting to unemployment, success towards goals, etc. Most importantly, we eliminate the silence between application and response. We keep people engaged, offer many job sources, but are required to own none. The model directs many jobs boards through our CRM system and provides visualizations of the jobs presented, data on relevance and frequency, training filters, and an organizer to maintain visualizations and archive artifacts and interactions. This Dashboard should provide jab market intelligence, offering new directions, and opportunity cost.  With each list of jobs sent from a job board (indeed etc) our assistant is embedded. As the seeker clicks the Indeed link, the job loads in our assistant browser – allowing for our resume service, as well as data acquisition for our organizer. THIS TOOL SET IS LOW EFFORT, REQUIRES NO NEW TECHNOLOGY – JUST A NEW APPROACH TO FAMILIAR TECH.

    Insights on organizing the job search were revealed by Targeted jobseekers.
    The organizer expanded our views of the potential dashboard.

    Vin C. Golden Path

    Employed full-time​
    Spouse / Child​

    • Users want the ability to track, communicate, and report on their job search​
    • They would like a report to submit to unemployment​
    • By providing an email, we can automate tracking​
    • Organize experience by designing access to past, present, and potential future actions (guided learning).​

    Study Outcomes​

    • Participants also associated dashboards to vehicle experience​
    • Initial validation of archetypes over 28 days ​
    • Job tenure, search frequency, and duration predict activity​
    • Roles and application frequency (job spam) increase with time ​
    • Short-term behavior undermines jobseekers’ long-term goals​
    • Job pathways are needed to help people make more money​
    • Focus on growth mindset to support subscription​

    Dashboard Insights 1 of 2​

    The dashboard should be a concierge experience​

    • Help the jobseeker drive the job search by:​
      • Automation, organization, and simplification of decision making​

        – Opportunity cost insights, search matching, resume matching to job listing, application submission process, communications, reporting, tracking, & storage​

    Dashboard Insights 2 of 2​

    • The jobseeker expects the dashboard to be about jobs​
    • Focus on job feed and matching​
    • Our dashboard acts more like a coat rack than a dashboard​
      – A repository of tools and user documents​

    Goals for Dashboard ​

    • Move people quickly from resume intent to jobs intent​
    • Show how we can customize the resume to the job listing and make application painless​
    • Make recommendations based upon filter, past roles, similar jobseekers and skills ​
    • Identify new job pathways in adjacent and orthogonal industries​

    Architecture for Dashboard & AI​

    We conceptualized the augmented job search, as well as a new vision to become a data company​
    Messaging would be critical


    Through this content, we could funnel through our dashboard and stay connected with mobile throughout the day​
    Providing multiple platform engagement ​
    Our dashboard began taking shape


    We found that we could facilitate communications and provide goal progress, opportunities, and their costs​
    As well as help them identify all of the sources for jobs, and where they were having the most success​
    Reduce redundancies, and reduce effort​
    We took these insights and created incremental testing and evaluation

    Incremental Certainty & Evaluation (ICE)​

    Meet the expectation, increase daily active use and grow subscription​

    1. The focus of the dashboard is jobs
    • Users want to take their new resume and look for jobs, Change the focal point to a job feed​
    1. Create visualization for job matches
    • Automate the job match function and create data visualization  that allows jobseeker to navigate and make decisions. Present “high, medium, and low” match.​
    1. The job toolsdon’t make sense
    • Contextualize the job tools in the job listing card. Make the tools automatic and useful in the context of user need with information to make decisions. A secondary placement in the menu bar.​
    1. Move resumes and cover letters
    • The resume and cover letter documents are not the focus of the dashboard or the  drop down for user documents.​

    1 Column vs. 2 Column:​
    Threshold sampling​
    AB  BA​

    Guided search​

    Where would you expect to find: resume you created? Where would you expect to find Salary Calculator, Maps, Interview Coaching, Job History​

    Sample size: 100 participants​

    • 60% Female; 40%  Male​
    • Age: 24-55​
    • Annual income: 40k-120k​

    The method is incremental – we learn, synthesize, redesign, test again, and go through the learning loop.


    • +1.6% Observed (dashboard traffic) CVR​
    • 2.04% RC1​
    • -3.1% cancellations​
    • Annual projection $5M x 6​
    • Reduction in call center about subscriptions​
    • Conversations at lunch felt better​

    Tactical in Service to the Strategic​

    • Present small change ​
    • Immediately actionable​
    • Give users control​
    • Use this as playbook trailblazing ​
    • Reduce cost, time, & risk​
      • Multiple Traits & Methods increase validity and reliability And reduce risk with user that have real goals and needs​
      • Less expense than live production testing​
      • Takes less time​