filters for a profile search

30 Jul 2008 - 9:11pm
6 years ago
4 replies
579 reads
Jay Morgan
2006

Hey IxDAers,

I'm designing a site that enables law firms to search law student profiles
to find job candidates, and have have to build the interface attorneys will
use to search the student profiles. I'm struggling with how to start the
search. Most fields have set values (state, law school name, law degree,
field of practice, state licensed in), and it seems we'd kick it off with
filters. There are about 15 such fields to search by, and we've got the
primary filters list down to 5 (those stated above). other filters will be
progressively disclosed. Searchers could use all 5 primary filters to yield
a focused results set - e.g., school name, practice area, state licensed in,
degree. Or, searchers could pick one or two filters to yield a large set
they can further winnow - e.g., state only.

I'm kinda stuck in the "search starts with a keyword entry box, or else it's
a trip planner" mental set. I want to see examples that aren't keyword or
trip planner searches, but don't have any in reach. Well, any that are good
examples. Can you point me to - or, share a shot of one you like - that
starts with filters? Or, offer me advice to help?

Thank you.

--
Jay A. Morgan

Information Architecture & Scenario-based design.
Design Patterns & Mental Models.

Comments

30 Jul 2008 - 10:17pm
Azmir
2007

If law students were like music, this could be fun:

http://soundtrack.pumpaudio.com/

Perhaps you might find some inspiration in this example.
Best,
Azmir

Jay Morgan wrote:
> Hey IxDAers,
>
> I'm designing a site that enables law firms to search law student profiles
> to find job candidates, and have have to build the interface attorneys will
> use to search the student profiles. I'm struggling with how to start the
> search. Most fields have set values (state, law school name, law degree,
> field of practice, state licensed in), and it seems we'd kick it off with
> filters. There are about 15 such fields to search by, and we've got the
> primary filters list down to 5 (those stated above). other filters will be
> progressively disclosed. Searchers could use all 5 primary filters to yield
> a focused results set - e.g., school name, practice area, state licensed in,
> degree. Or, searchers could pick one or two filters to yield a large set
> they can further winnow - e.g., state only.
>
> I'm kinda stuck in the "search starts with a keyword entry box, or else it's
> a trip planner" mental set. I want to see examples that aren't keyword or
> trip planner searches, but don't have any in reach. Well, any that are good
> examples. Can you point me to - or, share a shot of one you like - that
> starts with filters? Or, offer me advice to help?
>
>
> Thank you.
>
>

31 Jul 2008 - 9:02am
Santiago Bustelo
2010

In the employment website bumeran.com, we let the user start the
search with as little as possible, and filter the results
progressively.

That takes a lot of guesswork out of the problem (making decisions
about results you're going to get, if any, before getting them). And
there is no difference if you start the search with keywords, or
clicking in a category or suggestion.

>From the 5 fields you mention, the better suited to be the search
starter are "state licensed in" OR "state" (showing both will be
confusing). Makes no sense to start a search by "field of
practice", and getting mostly candidates thousands of miles away.

Data is never distributed in an uniform fashion across categories,
etc, and in many ocassions applying just one filter yields manageable
results. With a well thought search engine, that is. If the search
engine needs too much input from the user to mask out bad results,
then the search "engine" is asking the user to do the walk.

--
Santiago Bustelo // icograma
Buenos Aires, Argentina

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Posted from the new ixda.org
http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=31744

4 Aug 2008 - 10:18am
Michael B. Moore
2008

For what it's worth, in my experience lawyers are much better than average
users at forming boolean searches - they do it often in eDiscovery and
literature searches. (I've done a couple of eDiscovery applications and in
testing, the level of sophistication around searching was very high.)
The way these types of searches are usually run is to create a group of
result sets, and then manipulate the sets. So, for example:

- licensed in state = California -> Set A
- type of law degree - JD -> Set B
- In A and B -> Set C

Now, for folks not experienced in searching, I still think Kayak does an
amazing job with its checkboxes and sliders.

Michael Moore
Pure InfoDesign
Mill Valley, CA

On Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 7:02 AM, Santiago Bustelo
<santiago at bustelo.com.ar>wrote:

> In the employment website bumeran.com, we let the user start the
> search with as little as possible, and filter the results
> progressively.
>
> That takes a lot of guesswork out of the problem (making decisions
> about results you're going to get, if any, before getting them). And
> there is no difference if you start the search with keywords, or
> clicking in a category or suggestion.
>
> >From the 5 fields you mention, the better suited to be the search
> starter are "state licensed in" OR "state" (showing both will be
> confusing). Makes no sense to start a search by "field of
> practice", and getting mostly candidates thousands of miles away.
>
> Data is never distributed in an uniform fashion across categories,
> etc, and in many ocassions applying just one filter yields manageable
> results. With a well thought search engine, that is. If the search
> engine needs too much input from the user to mask out bad results,
> then the search "engine" is asking the user to do the walk.
>
> --
> Santiago Bustelo // icograma
> Buenos Aires, Argentina
>
>
> . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> Posted from the new ixda.org
> http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=31744
>
>
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Michael B. Moore • Pure InfoDesign • 415.246.6690 M • www.pureinfodesign.com

4 Aug 2008 - 11:11am
Jay Morgan
2006

@ Azmir:
The Pump Audio Soundtrack tool was exactly the kind of inspiration I was
looking for. A designer and I started sketching out concepts together last
week, and it's similar to that tool. It has a good mix of browse-filtering,
and I was in the search-then-filter mental set.

@ Santiago:
Great challenges. To you point, though, people would start with "field of
practice", since students would be happy to relocate for a new job. Think of
it this way: Student studies environmental law in a Florida law school. A
firm in Houston, TX, would see him/her as a perfect candidate, since they're
looking for someone in the Gulf (of Mexico) region. Applying a "field of
practice" filter and then something for "geography" would help them narrow
to a mid-sized list that they can further winnow.

@ Michael:
I notice this proficiency w/ Boolean, too. Our challenge is that attorney's
might 'destroy' their results if they enter a fields we don't index, and our
search engine won't be that strong across all fields in the pilot. We will
probably work in keywords for specific fields, and that's part of the
overall challenge. Azmir's suggested Pump Audio has a distinct selection for
keywords, which suggests a good signal to users that the two methods are not
necessarily equivalent.

Thanks for the contributions. I'd love to hear more ideas or see more
examples. This challenge becomes more frequent, not less.
-Jay

On Mon, Aug 4, 2008 at 10:18 AM, Michael Moore <mmoore at pureinfodesign.com>wrote:

> For what it's worth, in my experience lawyers are much better than average
> users at forming boolean searches - they do it often in eDiscovery and
> literature searches. (I've done a couple of eDiscovery applications and in
> testing, the level of sophistication around searching was very high.)
> The way these types of searches are usually run is to create a group of
> result sets, and then manipulate the sets. So, for example:
>
> - licensed in state = California -> Set A
> - type of law degree - JD -> Set B
> - In A and B -> Set C
>
> Now, for folks not experienced in searching, I still think Kayak does an
> amazing job with its checkboxes and sliders.
>
> Michael Moore
> Pure InfoDesign
> Mill Valley, CA
>
> On Thu, Jul 31, 2008 at 7:02 AM, Santiago Bustelo
> <santiago at bustelo.com.ar>wrote:
>
> > In the employment website bumeran.com, we let the user start the
> > search with as little as possible, and filter the results
> > progressively.
> >
> > That takes a lot of guesswork out of the problem (making decisions
> > about results you're going to get, if any, before getting them). And
> > there is no difference if you start the search with keywords, or
> > clicking in a category or suggestion.
> >
> > >From the 5 fields you mention, the better suited to be the search
> > starter are "state licensed in" OR "state" (showing both will be
> > confusing). Makes no sense to start a search by "field of
> > practice", and getting mostly candidates thousands of miles away.
> >
> > Data is never distributed in an uniform fashion across categories,
> > etc, and in many ocassions applying just one filter yields manageable
> > results. With a well thought search engine, that is. If the search
> > engine needs too much input from the user to mask out bad results,
> > then the search "engine" is asking the user to do the walk.
> >
> > --
> > Santiago Bustelo // icograma
> > Buenos Aires, Argentina
> >
> >
> > . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
> > Posted from the new ixda.org
> > http://www.ixda.org/discuss?post=31744
> >
> >
> > ________________________________________________________________
> > Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> > To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> > Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> > List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> > List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
> >
>
>
>
> --
> Michael B. Moore • Pure InfoDesign • 415.246.6690 M •
> www.pureinfodesign.com
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> Unsubscribe ................ http://www.ixda.org/unsubscribe
> List Guidelines ............ http://www.ixda.org/guidelines
> List Help .................. http://www.ixda.org/help
>

--
Jay A. Morgan

Information Architecture & Scenario-based design.
Design Patterns & Mental Models.

Syndicate content Get the feed