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A Mobile Recruiting Checklist

by
David Martin
Oct 9, 2012, 4:24 am ET

To help you better understand mobile optimization, I have prepared a simple checklist, taken from my 2012 mobile recruiting guide.

Are you building great relationships from your career website when candidates visit on mobile? If you haven’t considered the following, you could be damaging your employee brand.

  • Do users have to pinch and zoom on their devices in order to view all your content?
  • Does the top of page navigation fill the screen so users can’t see the content without scrolling?
  • Are links very small, making them difficult to tap with a finger or thumb?
  • Does your site have large images that take up valuable space on the device screen?
  • Does your site use hover (or drop down) menus? These won’t work on most mobile devices
  • Do your sites have lots of popup boxes? These can massively damage the mobile navigation experience
  • Does your site have a large graphic as a header at the top of the site? It will push important content off a small screen
  • Is your site copy heavy? The text may be too small to read on a mobile device, and most users prefer graphics, images, and videos.

Are you emailing your job seekers or engaging in social media? Considering the following will provide you immediate increased return from your efforts.

  • Are your emails easy to ready on a mobile? Make sure the candidate is not scrolling horizontally and that call to actions are big enough to tap.
  • Do hyperlinks in emails or posted in social media redirect to mobile content? Given the volume of candidates who will follow these links on mobile, you could risk brand damage and very high bounce rates away from your campaign efforts.

Could your site load faster on mobile? This section is quite technical so don’t worry if it is difficult to follow. You should however make sure any mobile partner or supplier you choose to work with has a good understanding of these issues.

  • Is content pulled in from many domains? Mobiles do not cache in the same way as desktops so the increased server requests caused will result in slower performance.
  • Are images used when CSS3 could be used? CSS3 is typically going to be faster and with very small download data size, resulting in a better candidate experience.
  • Are there lots of HTTP requests; could sprites be used? Lots of small images result in lots of individual requests to the server for graphics; sprite techniques allow the images to be retrieved in one request.
  • Does the site expect the client to cache large files like images or JS? Some desktop sites load large images or scripts on the first page and expect that data to be present for future pages. On mobile it is less likely the data will be available on future pages resulting in repeated downloads and slow performance.
  • Does the JS rely on large third-party libraries?
  • Are Java plugins, Flash, or Silverlight technologies used? Many plugins such as Flash are not available across all mobile operating systems.
  • Are videos encoded at high quality so they need high bandwidth? Various alternate video encoding methods exist that are designed for mobile performance.
  • File size is not just about bandwidth speed but also impacts the rendering (drawing) time of the browser due to the mobile having less computing power.

Delivering a consistent and high performance experience across smartphone operating systems is difficult. You must ensure that your solutions partner is testing across a wide variety of devices. Make sure you see the site on a 24-month-old Android and older iPhone, not just the latest shiny hardware.

This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to offer specific legal advice. You should consult your legal counsel regarding any threatened or pending litigation.

  1. Wen Tian

    Dave, this is a great checklist! I suggest one more item for the technical section. Mobile browsers are known for inconsistent scrolling experiences. Depending on the complexity of the mobile site, one might want to implement a third party scrolling plugin to ensure that the scrolling behavior is as smoothly as possible on all types of mobile devices.

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  3. Gareth Jenkins

    A very good and worthy checklist Dave. Many of these issues can be avoided by having a dedicated platform built specifically to address some of these issues and differences with how desktops handle page loading.

    It also needs to be borne in mind when using a Responsive Design approach towards mobile, that you are still ultimately loading a lot of content and resources onto the mobile only to hide many of them afterwards. Still not a very efficient page loading approach.

    At 4MAT (http://www.4mat.com) we have spent a lot of time building a dedicated and highly optimized mobile specific platform for our clients’ sites. We view responsive approach as something that can work very well to handle both desktop and tablet access, but not for mobile devices.

    A great article and thanks for sharing!

  4. Robert Ritchie

    I think that it is ironic that I read an article on the importance of mobile websites on a website that has no mobile option…

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