I partnered with a PM to conduct user research on the verification space, which resulted in the funding and formation of Indeed Check. I've been working on design and research for this product since December '22.
Role + Team
I'm the sole UX designer and researcher on Indeed Check, and I work closely with my PM to strategize our roadmap. I work equally closely with dev to ship the overall experience and enhancements.
Incubator approaches innovation in a very methodical and research based way. In this project, I conducted initial discovery research and contributed those findings to a product pitch that received funding from leadership. Following that pitch, myself, dev, and product partnered closely with legal to uncover potential risks with our product direction and design the UX accordingly. Indeed Check recently launched and we're currently reviewing metrics and designing for future versions of this product.
In Q4 of 2022, I partnered with a PM to conduct exploratory research around credential verification to identify areas for innovation. I led user interviews with employers and job seekers and also designed two surveys to evaluate the scale of the interview findings through a more quantitative lens.
Key Research Questions
How are job seekers currently verifying their credentials?
How do job seekers share their verified credentials with employers?
What privacy concerns do job seekers have around sharing their credentials?
How do job seekers react to a hypothetical certification product?
What role do licenses, certifications, and background checks play in the hiring process?
How do employers currently verify JS credentials? Background checks?
How often do employers run into fraudulent or inaccurate information?
How would employers feel about verifying credentials through Indeed?
I recruited job seekers in industries that require occupational licenses and spoke to employers who hired these job seekers. I set out to start investigating our key research questions and identifying pain points to innovate around.
Top Interview Findings - Employers
Top Interview Findings - Job Seekers
The interviews identified the high-level journey that employers and job seekers go through to verify credentials. Employers seemed to have the strongest pain point due to legal compliance and having to vet credentials for large numbers of candidates. Job seekers were open and used to sharing their credentials publically and weren't actively involved in the credential verification process when applying to jobs.
After the interviews, we wanted to drill down into the employer process to better understand how and when we might be able to make the most impact in their hiring process. We also sent out a job seeker survey to measure the scale of our interview findings.
We wanted to understand employer behavior when it came to license verification to understand how we could integrated into their existing workflows.
Severity of Pain Point
By gauging how strongly employers felt about verifying licenses, we could proxy how much of an impact this product could make in their hiring workflow and how they might perceive it.
I further sliced this data in Qualtrics to uncover that employers are primarily motivated by legal compliance and sourcing quality candidates when it comes to pre-verifying credentials.
Discovery Research Summary
Our qualitative and quantitative research indicated that many employers legally had to verify job seeker credentials and that the process was a significant pain point for them. We learned that employers often looped verification into the background check process but many did a self-verification with state board sites after the first interview. We hypothesized this product could be most impactful around that first interview phase to help employers prioritize the most qualified candidates and ensure compliance.
Defining MVP I
I collaborated with my PM to create a pitch deck for our proposed Indeed Check product. After a successful pitch, our pod received funding for 2 quarters and we began defining our MVP.
Indeed as a Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA)
We initially wanted to build a product that allowed job seekers to verify their credentials with Indeed and then share them with employers when they applied to jobs. We learned that due to FCRA laws, Indeed would have to become a CRA to accomplish this. I worked with legal to create these flow diagrams to illustrate where FCRA compliance would come into play if this were the case.
Job Seeker MVP Iterations
Through conversations these diagrams facilitated, we ultimately decided to not move forward with a product that would require Indeed to become a CRA. During the time these conversations took place, I ideated on several different versions of our MVP, some of which are below.
We explored leveraging Indeed's Profile Sights UX to mimic a familiar pattern for job seekers and contextually appeal to them.
For this iteration, we started treating the product as more of a standalone intake. Here, legal implications started affecting UX decisions, such as clearly outlining sharing permissions.
Finalized Job Seeker MVP
We aligned on releasing a product that enabled job seekers to share evidence of their credentials with employers. This encourages job seekers to put their best foot forward on their job applications and optimizes candidate quality for employers.
The employer MVP was more straightforward, mainly because we know that employers don't like using new tools. To integrate this new feature successfully into employers' hiring processes, we worked with the Employer Home team to integrate into Indeed's ATS where employers were used to reviewing candidates.
Defining Key Results
I worked closely with my PM to define the KRs for this project. For job seekers, we wanted to ensure our KRs were effectively designed to measure perceived value. For employers, we wanted to measure if our product was speeding up their time to hire.
Initial MVP Performance
Job seekers outperformed our first KR of credenential add rate but underperformed when it came to acquistion and setting their credential links to visible.
Understanding Why with User Research
With our performance metrics in hand, I set out to understand why we were underperforming in some areas. I cross-referenced different UX research we had and put together a presentation hypothesizing ways to improve. I also offered design proposals to enhance our experience and performance. Below are some of the slides from that presentation.
MVP II Brainstorm + Next Steps
After presenting the strategy deck above, I led a collaborative brainstorm with the team to generate ideas on how we could improve our product, UX, and KR metrics.
Following the brainstorm, our team aligned on improvements for MVP II, which is currently in development. With this version, we're aiming to figure out if employers have a preference when it comes to verified credentials vs. user-supplied credentials. I'll add more content as our newer versions go live.