Jen Lavallee


A bit of everything, bringing more skills to the table

F5 careers page

When someone went to apply a job at F5 the whole process was painful.  The application system that we used was outdated and the page of content buried itand surfaced information that some in the company wanted surfaced but that many doubted applicants cared about.  As our HR department upgraded their applicant system we were able to finally work on recreating a dark spot on the website the careers page. 

The dream team

Our team consisted of Marron leading and managing the project Sonya and David both writing copy, Suzanne working on content strategy and myself focused on usability and visual design.  A great team like the one above makes all the difference. 

Gathering information

Determining what is in and out of scope is so crucial to a project and so easy to skip.  Outlining the intent of the project what would be addressed and what we would not be able to handle due to restriction of time and recourses set expectations.  The team was able to sit down with stakeholders and discover what they were being asked by applicants, what the needs of the recruiters were and what image and messages the HR department wanted to show.  Then we agreed to reviews and a timeline was created.


Planning the Architecture

With meetings between our team members and HR we started to separate our information into 4 buckets: why F5, teams, locations and the job search / application process.


In tandem to creating mood boards and a visual style I sat down and began white boarding.  The main goal was to find ways to lay out the page to present a story that we wanted to create and direct people to both the content that we felt was a value add and the content and actions that people were looking for. 


White boarding

Using Balsamiq I started to play with user flows and wireframes, eventually deciding that it was more productive to get the team members together and have wire framing sessions.


We continued from sketches to low fidelity prototypes made in balsamiq then we noticed that people were struggling understanding the intents of the page with filler text and missing images the the low fi prototype contained so I built out high fidelity prototypes with a design style that was not under consideration.  We were working concurrently on moodboards and design style.  I didn't want images or illustrations to be locked down when looking at prototypes so We kept it stylized and used a disclaimer before presenting the prototypes.


Mood boards

The design of the microsite needed to fit within the whole of F5 however it could push the envelope more then typical.  I played with and then created 4 individual design styles and presented moodboards to the team of which they selected 3 to present to management.  Of these one was selected, allowing for final layout.


Before designing the final layout I met with our developers insuring that all functionality that we were using could be built within the timeline.  With the go ahead I laid out the designs in photoshop.  We tweaked met, tested and iterated again.


The moodboard that was selected was a focus was described as: 

“A sense of place, activity and rich editorial photography helps us tell our people-centric “we build tomorrow” story” 

For that we needed high quality photos that showed us, in our offices doing our jobs.  We put a call out and scheduled volunteers for shoots and spent a full day shooting everything we might need.  I brought my camera and went to work as a photographer.  Then selecting and editing photos built a small library of images that we had of our employees. 

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Final approval

We presented on June 29th received signoff on the designs. Our team was incredibly proud of the work we had done. I would have loved to include actual job applicants in a research phase and a prototyping phase but as we were limited in both time and budget we worked with what we had and have been able to see results from it.

Impact to the company

Traffic to the page in the later half of October had increased 7.25% from that date range the prior year, the real wins became that the bounce rate improved from a 65% bounce rate to a 16% rate with the average time on page increasing from 40 to 152 seconds, a 74% increase.