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A glimpse behind the scenes:
How we have developed the new Job Ad Designer


Prescreen Job Ad Designer development team

Editor’s note: This article was published on August 19, 2021, but has been updated on August 31, 2021.

What is new? The Job Ad Designer is now available to all Prescreen customers. Continue with our follow-up article to find out how your recruiting may benefit from the new feature with tough competition this autumn.

Are you already curious and looking forward to shining with your job ads? The new Job Ad Designer is in the starting blocks, what is left to do are a few final touches. In the meanwhile, we invite you to take an exclusive look behind the scenes. Meet three of our project members and hear about the development of this new feature. In our interview, Georg Thurner, Daniel Utrilla Mellinas and Abel Énekes reveal why they think it is exciting to work with the new tool, where personal highlights and difficulties lay, and the road ahead.
What is the Prescreen Job Ad Designer all about?

  • Create customized job ad templates for your company — without any programming skills
  • Ensure a unique and professional appearance thanks to best-practice examples and guided navigation
  • Simplify the creation and publishing of your job ads
  • Vary your templates for different jobs and target groups
  • Enjoy the flexibility to make changes yourself at any time
Prescreen: First of all, before we dig into details about the new Job Ad Designer, let me ask you: Why do you think now is the right time for this feature to be added to Prescreen?

Georg: The job market is heavily on the rise (after all the lockdowns). Companies are starting to recruit again and those who are able to secure the best candidates will be the winners. I believe a modern job ad is one of the options you have to shine and draw attention in the crowd. Also, the ability to create specific designs for different target groups will help our users a lot. Additionally, speed and flexibility is of the essence: With this tool, our customers can quickly realize their ideas all by themselves.

Daniel: I absolutely agree. Finding the right candidates could be very difficult, especially for certain positions. Our goal obviously is to help our customers to be more effective in their hiring processes. The job ad plays a big part in attracting candidates and “the first impression counts”. Therefore, designing professional and attractive job ads is the first step in convincing good candidates to apply. With the Job Ad Designer, our users can achieve that and even customize their job ads to their desired audience, which will increase chances of luring the right applicants.

Designing professional and attractive job ads is the first step in convincing good candidates to apply.
Daniel Utrilla MellinasInteraction Designer, Prescreen
Prescreen: What has been your motivation in creating this feature, which problems are you trying to solve for HR managers or staff?

Daniel: With the new feature, users can design many different templates to be used for different jobs depending on their strategy. They can add different components allowing them to create all the designs they have in mind — and they can change them themselves anytime. Furthermore, Prescreen users are able to publish their job openings through a range of different channels. With the Job Ad Designer, we wanted to support that variety by allowing to adapt templates for different publishing options. At the end of the day, what we wanted to achieve with this feature was to enable our users to have more flexibility in how their job ads look and for them to gain the desired candidates.

Georg: I would like to add that giving our customers the possibility to create job ads without having to dig into coding is one of the key principles of the Job Ad Designer. Our users are recruiting experts and should not need to become web design or HTML experts to create high-quality job ads.

Giving our customers the possibility to create job ads without having to dig into coding is one of the key principles of the Job Ad Designer.
Georg ThurnerSenior Product Manager, Prescreen
Prescreen: How many people in total have been working on the Job Ad Designer?

Georg: The core development team consisted of eight people — but, of course, a lot of colleagues from all different departments were involved and contributed a fair share of ideas and feedback.

Georg Thurner

Georg Thurner

Senior Product Manager

Daniel Utrilla Mellinas

Daniel Utrilla Mellinas

Interaction Designer

Abel Enekes

Abel Énekes

Senior Front-End Engineer

Prescreen: How did the three of you work together in development? Tell us a little about the process and your individual tasks.

Georg: Like with any feature, as a product owner, I am responsible for the “why”. My role is to deliver the maximum value for our users by making sure that my team’s creativity is applied wisely in the given time. To achieve this, communication is key. I think development is only successful if every team member knows exactly what we are going for and why we are implementing things in a certain way.

Daniel: Agreed, our team has been in constant exchange with each other. My job as an interaction designer (or UX/UI designer) began long before the actual developing phase, creating the concept and designs. Then, during development, I have been helping to ensure that the design will meet user expectations and I keep doing adjustments when needed.

Abel: I have been working on the project as a front-end engineer. The Job Ad Designer entailed much more complex tasks compared to my usual front-end work. But I was happy to take on a new challenge and to participate in building a new feature from scratch. I really made an effort to join the product design process early on. It was exciting to see how it all came together through discussing and refining the different ideas from Product, UX/UI and Engineering. I think that way we were also able to discover potential difficulties and pitfalls quite early.

Prescreen: Where do you draw inspiration from when creating a new feature like this?

Daniel: Inspiration for me comes from different places and in different shapes, often depending on where we are in the process. For the Job Ad Designer, at the very beginning, we had a close look at our customers’ already existing job ad templates. That helped us a lot to define the ideal scope of functionality. Then going into the design process, I like to create a rough design sketch on paper, which helps me to understand the flow and improve my planning. I certainly take similar user experiences on other apps or platforms into account and reveal common patterns, but every design should be adapted to the specific user needs. As mentioned before, we value communication between different departments and involving people from many disciplines. Combining differing and sometimes contradicting points of view creates a lot of valuable feedback and allows us to co-design the best experience for our users.

Abel: I had already worked on a similar project which unfortunately never made it to its final phase. Working on the Job Ad Designer felt like a second chance, an opportunity to build on my previous experience while avoiding the previous mistakes and creating something that would succeed in the end.

Georg: It may sound a little cheesy, but it is true: Offering new functionalities and thereby making our customers happy ignites me the most.

Prescreen Job Ad Designer development team
Prescreen Job Ad Designer development team
Prescreen: Name the one hurdle, please, you found the hardest to overcome during development.

Abel: The biggest hurdle – from a technical perspective – was managing the progress of the Job Ad Designer. We sometimes ran into situations where we introduced ground-breaking changes which made older functionalities unusable. Adding new things while keeping old ones intact is always a challenge.

Georg: For me, the number of different publishing options with different form requirements was the most challenging part. We wanted to make sure that job ads would be displayed exactly the way our users had envisioned them.

Daniel: From my side, keeping the balance between a clean interface and all the functionalities we wanted to add was one of the biggest challenges.

Prescreen: Since you mentioned it, Daniel, how do you ensure designing a user-friendly tool that will actually help users in their work?

Daniel: As I mentioned before, it is essential to always keep in mind which problem we are aiming to solve for our users. Therefore, what we usually do and also did for this feature was conducting several usability tests. By testing, gaining feedback and eventually validating the entire user experience, I am always confident we have done our best to make a new feature fun to use. Of course, the design process continues even after a feature is released and never really stops, based on feedback we collect.

Prescreen: Now during this phase of beta testing, what are you working on up until the release?

Georg: Basically, we are working on a few functionalities that did not make it to the beta phase but which we would still like to see ready for the official release. Beyond that, we also want to ensure that we have high-quality support content available for our users, like a very detailed and comprehensive manual. Thanks to that, users will be good to start designing job templates and then job ads in no time.

Abel: I am eradicating some minor remaining bugs and applying the final touches to the user interface.

Daniel: That is exactly it, finishing and polishing. Making sure we are delivering the optimal experience to our users.

Prescreen Job Ad Designer Entwicklungsteam
Prescreen Job Ad Designer Entwicklungsteam
Prescreen: Can you share a few secrets on what else you are planning for the feature?

Georg: We are definitely planning to add certain functionalities related to videos, social media or company benefits. Furthermore, we intend to provide a rich set of best-practice templates which customers can add to their accounts. And, of course, we are always curious to hear what suggestions our beta testers and all other users will express.

Prescreen: One last, again more personal question: Which part of the Job Ad Designer do you like the most and are you excited for our users to discover?

Daniel: This is really difficult to pick because, for me, the feature is a package that works as a whole. But if I have to choose: I am very proud of how we allow our users to have an adaptable, responsive job ad and being able to preview it before publishing on different platforms.

Abel: I like the configurability of the job ad templates. For instance, the way you can easily change the colors (for the background, buttons, etc.) and immediately see it all happen, makes me feel we did a good job.

For instance, you can easily change the colors and immediately see it all happen.
Abel ÉnekesSenior Front-End Engineer, Prescreen

Georg: I must say I am really fond of the user interface and user experience as a whole. I think we actually have achieved a good balance between offering an easy-to-use tool and allowing the flexibility to create very specific and individual designs.

Prescreen: Thank you for the thrilling interview and all the best for the final to-dos.
Excited to get started straight away? Discover the many functionalities with which you can now further customize your recruiting — the Job Ad Designer is available to all Prescreen customers since August 31, 2021.

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