By Karen Nimblett, Public Service Commission

The Public Service Commission worked with the Digital Transformation Office (DTO) and other partners over the summer to optimize the task of finding a government job on the website.

Past user experience testing showed us that users were confused by the options that were provided under the Jobs menu. “Job Bank, Find a job….What’s the difference? Which one do I choose?”

More recent user experience testing was done to establish a baseline. It confirmed that this problem still exists.


The tasks that were performed by users, helped us discover that:

  • doormat links and descriptions are not that clear
  • a lot of people use Job Bank to search for Government of Canada jobs
  • if a search for government jobs in Job Bank brings up no results they assume that there aren’t any jobs available
  • some job titles need to be improved
  • not all Government of Canada jobs show up in Job Bank because they don’t use the proper National Occupation Codes (NOCs)
  • GC jobs is often used to search for and apply to our student and graduate programs

We organized workshops to brainstorm ideas and solutions. Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) was a key player in helping us figure out what improvements could be made to the Find a job and Youth and student employment topic pages.

Job Bank gave us a good understanding of how their system worked so we could work together and make improvements.

The Public Service Commission helped everyone understand how the GC jobs application works, and its connection with Job Bank.

Together, we all looked at what changes could be made to the Government of Canada jobs and GC jobs topic pages.

How do we pull it all together?

  • consensus was that we should remove the Job Bank link from the Jobs menu to eliminate any confusion
  • we revised the doormat links and descriptions on the Find a job topic page and removed some that weren’t performing well based on analytics
  • we revised the doormat links and descriptions on the Youth and Student Employment page and removed some that weren’t performing well based on analytics
  • we eliminated the GC jobs topic page and moved the necessary doormats onto the Government of Canada jobs topic page eliminating some clicks
  • tests were done with NOC codes to improve findability of Government of Canada jobs in Job Bank
  • new layouts for our recruitment program pages were designed and tested

Next steps

Follow-up testing demonstrated that all of these changes resulted in more task success. There is still some work that needs to be done, but our goal of making improvements to the task of finding a government job was achieved. The results will be implemented in the very near future and we had a very positive experience working with the DTO team.

We want to hear from you

Let us know what you think about this project. Email us at or tweet using the hashtag #Canadadotca.

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About the author

Karen Nimblett is the Head of Web Services at the Public Service Commission. She started her career in government as a web designer, and is currently leading her organization through web optimization and improving the user experience. She enjoys music, dancing, soccer and all things digital!