It’s been estimated that as much as 40% of the current desktop-based recruitment searching will migrate to mobile devices by 2014. I suspect the change may occur even more quickly – but the end result is the same: no job site can ignore mobile.

So what are the implications for your job site or career hub? In other words, what should you focus on as you make your site friendly to mobile devices?

  • Optimize and streamline the most important functions: Think like a person with a cell phone – what functions does that person typically want to access? Usually, these will be Search, Detailed Job View, and Send Job (or Tag Job) – for later viewing at their desktop. Your audience may be so sophisticated as to Apply for a job via their mobile device – or they may not. How do you find out? Ask your users! They’ll tell you.
  • Make sure you work on the most popular mobile platforms: At present, that means iPhone, Android, and Blackberry. But if one thing is constant about the mobile world, it’s change. This is a job that’s never done. (For example – Microsoft has a new Windows mobile platform that may (or may not) take off).
  • Think simple and easy to use on a tiny screen: It’s an entirely different mindset than desktop-based use. You may find it useful (or even mandatory) to work with software developers who specialize in mobile applications. Key areas to scrutinize include navigation, page width, page length, and text display.
  • Drop the ads: If you have site ads, you should probably drop them for your mobile version. Why? These ads will clutter up your extremely limited real estate – thus limiting the usefulness to the job seeker.
  • Include auto-detection: Your site should ‘auto-detect’ the mobile device when it reaches your site – don’t make the user have to do anything special (or most likely you’ll lose them).
  • Measure: Depending on your job sector niche, mobile may be a huge piece of your traffic – or a small one. The only way you’ll know is to measure. Integrate this measurement into your analytics (Google Analytics makes this easy, by the way).

There are already job board ‘mobile specialists’ out there, focused entirely on making iPhone and Android apps for job boards. It may well be worth your time to find one!

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