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A Personalized Approach to Choosing the Perfect Tech Career

FPCS worked with Jobs Nirvana to design & build a web application to meet the unique needs of women pursuing careers in technology.

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Geek Girl Careers is a startup focused on getting more women working in technology careers. They match women to careers based on personality and offer jobs, internships and mentorships within their platform.

Location
San Jose, CA

  • Design Methods
  • Research
  • User Testing
  • Ideation & Product Design
  • Prototyping
  • Brand Identity
  • Visual Design
  • UI Development
  • Back End Development

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The Challenge

About 74 percent of young girls express interest in STEM fields. However, women represent just 28 percent of computer science graduates, and 11 percent of executive leaders in Silicon Valley, and that number is in decline.

In 2015, the founders of Jobs Nirvana, a technology workforce development platform, decided to take a look at the problem. Their international community of young, engineers and design professionals seemed like a good place to start. In examining their user data, Jobs Nirvana discovered that women were among their most active and dedicated users, though the population too was small. How could they help?

Key Insights

Jobs Nirvana engaged Flower Press Creative Studio to examine the issue. We conducted a series of interviews with high school and college women. Our interviewees included a mix of women actively pursuing technology careers, and those with interest in STEM fields, unsure about which career path to choose. All of these conversations led to a key Product Insight:

The tech career landscape is increasingly complex with many, many roles available. Women with interest in STEM careers were unsure how to find the right path. Many were being pushed toward software engineering but wanted to consider other options. The quantity of choices was getting in the way.

This surprised us. We thought more choices, and options would be a good thing. But for some of these women, the options were paralyzing. It became clear us that reducing the quantity of choices, in a personal, thoughtful and meaningful way was critical to the success of our female-targeted platform.

The Solution

With this Product Insight in mind, we took a look at the Jobs Nirvana framework, and how we could migrate features to serve this audience better. On the original Jobs Nirvana system, users registered and introduced to companies, jobs and other career seekers in their area. Jobs Nirvana also had a relatively hidden Personality Assessment, which assigned users to a personality group, and recommended career roles based on innate traits. Using the utility was optional, but it did get high engagement by female users.

And, there it was. The secret sauce. We moved the Personality Assessment utility front and center, up to the start of the registration process. Not only would this allow us to narrow down career options early, it would let us do it in a personalized way.

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After completing the Personality Assessment users are presented with valuable personality insights and suitable Career Roles to choose from.

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Once the user selects Career Roles of interest, Geek Girl Careers opens up a plethora of opportunities in that field. Among the most popular features are Mentorship Forums, where professionals working in technology answer Geek Girl questions and give advice. The site offers Required Skills for each Career Role, Training Opportunities, Internship Listings, Networking Events, and Job Listings for recent graduates.

The result is a system that enables women to find a good career fit in technology.