TheLadders mobile app team gets inspired from an unlikely source -- Ben Grohe explains.
In my last post, I wrote about why it’s important to challenge your existing assumptions when you build products for mobile devices. As I explained in that article, it is not enough to merely copy (web) functionality and make it look nice on a smaller screen; you have to first re-think what functionality is necessary for a mobile platform. Today, I want to talk about finding inspiration in new places.
When we started our competitive research early in 2013, we investigated every major job-search app within Apple’s app store. We wanted to see how they dealt with the unique challenges of mobile devices and, more importantly, solved the problems of their mobile customers. To be frank, we were disappointed. Most apps just replicated their trusted web experience: login, search for jobs, save or email jobs, and sometimes (if you already had a resume on file), you were allowed to apply using your phone.
Not only do these well-known job-search processes require significant time, they are tasks better managed on a desktop or laptop where you have lots of screen space –which is something you don’t have on your phone.