A Human Resources Solution for Europe's Biggest Airline

  • Nov 2016
  • Read Time: 6 Mins

Ryanair-Careers-Website-Design Overview-Big-Dog-Digital

About Ryanair

Ryanair is Europe’s favourite airline, operating more than 1,800 daily flights from 78 bases, connecting 200 destinations in 31 countries on a fleet of over 300 Boeing 737 aircraft. Ryanair has a team of more than 10,000 highly skilled aviation professionals delivering Europe’s No.1 on-time performance, and has an industry leading 31-year safety record.


As part of Ryanair’s “Always Getting Better” program, the CEO requested the current Careers section of the Ryanair corporate website be completely revamped and modernised.  

Ryanair outlined in detail the core business objectives and success criteria that would shape the project. A key objective was to give the user a rich experience in an easy-to-navigate and easy- to-search portal.

  • Fully Responsive (Desktop, Mobile, Tablet)
  • Giving a dynamic platform for each core business area (Operations, Labs, Cabin Crew, Engineering, Head Office)
  • Full CMS control for entire content
  • Integrated with existing HR system
  • Filtered search and intuitive results for all vacancies

The new site would sit within the brand guidelines and be consistent with the main corporate site.


Ryanair and our team engaged in numerous discovery meeting to discuss the high level business scope and success criteria for the new careers portal. The existing portal didn’t give users an honest reflection of life at Ryanair and had become cumbersome in key areas like navigation, search, rich content, mobile experience.

From these discussions we clearly identified what users wanted from the new portal and mapped out how a candidate would navigate from initial landing through to search and apply.  Our team then drafted the required architecture and content structure to get a sense of the foundations for the site build and search parameters.   


User Research

Given the complex nature of the portal we started validating our proposed direction with low-level wireframes, these were used to iterate issues, take out what wasn’t working and push through to a solution in a logical planned manner. We detailed within our wireframes how users would interact with each page and also documented the functionality of components, overall navigation and search (Desktop, Mobile, Tablet) .

Through structured iteration and feedback sessions a solid plan began to emerge, we then started work on an early stage prototype. This would give a more visual representation of our initial concept, using the Ryanair design style guide. Again we delivered and iterated upon detailed mockups for the core site templates and search process.   

It was important from a project management point of view we engage the wider business group in regular feedback loops. This enables direction, timelines and responsibilities to be reviewed in increments, giving the project a collaborative and steady progression . This approach also allows our own resources to be managed efficiently.


Annotated Wireframe
Interactive Prototyping


Ryanair takes great care of its online brand and this new digital asset needed to sit within the corporate style guides. With the blueprint agreed by the wider business and stakeholders, our team began to build out the user interface style guide, colour, typography, components, buttons, forms. This ensured consistency and also an efficient build for us.

Style Guide

The full design guide supported our approach to creating a consistent experience for mobile tablet and desktop. In simple terms we wanted to ensure the desktop experience was a rich as the mobile. Making it easier for users to explore, search and engage with the content they wanted.




A fully editable WordPress CMS was implemented, along with a custom integration with the Workable API. The custom WordPress Theme we developed is fully responsive and follows best practices in terms of SEO and Standards Compliance.


Ryanair manage their recruitment processes through the Workable system. In order for our system to be able to communicate with the Workable API, we developed a custom WordPress Plugin which regularly communicates with the Workable REST API. This insures that the data available to the public via the careers website is always up-to-date and available to users of the site.

The technologies applied to this project are:


As part of the process, we worked with the Ryanair Quality Assurance Team to extensively test the system at scale, covering a vast array of devices, browsers and screen resolutions.

Android Device iOS Device Browsers
Samsung S3 iPhone 4s Google Chrome 41.0
Samsung S4 iPhone 5c Safari 8.0
Samsung S5 iPhone 5 Google Chrome 42.0
HTC One (new) iPhone 5s Microsoft IE 11
HTC One X iPhone 6 Mozilla Firefox 37.0
Sony Xperia iPhone 6 Plus Mozilla Firefox 37.0
Google Nexus 5 iPad Mini Microsoft IE 9*
Samsung Note 3 iPad Retina Microsoft IE 8*
Google Nexus 6 iPad Air Safari 8.0.4
Samsung Galaxy A5 Google Chrome 39.0
Samsung Galaxy S5 Mobile Safari 7.0
ZTE Chrome Mobile 41.0.2272
Nexus 7 ASUS Android Browser 4.0
XT1039 (Moto G LTE) Chrome Mobile 41.0.2311
LG G3 (D855) Chrome Mobile 28.0.1500
Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Mobile Safari 6.0
Samsung Galaxy S6 Chrome Mobile 34.0.1847
Sony Experia Z3


  • Increase in sessions, page views and a vast reduction in bounce rate
  • Full integration with existing HR system
  • Clear and intuitive navigation and search
  • Improved customer journey from initial landing, search, job detail to contact.
  • Vastly improved the brand message for Ryanair and users
  • Increased the average time users spend on the site
  • Client control with integrated CMS

What the client said

“We have engaged with Big Dog Digital Limited on three projects over the past 18 months. Our experience partnering with Big Dog has been extremely positive. For each project, our requirements were delivered in full. Big Dog had all the skill-sets required from excellent designers to a very talented technical team to implement our projects. We look forward to engaging with Big Dog again in the future”.

Declan McCabe
Project Manager
Ryanair Labs

Dara Keogan

With a BA Honours Degree in Design and a wealth of experience in UI/UX, Dara has worked with numerous national and international clients over the past nine years. Dara oversees the planning, prototype development and design of all our projects. One of Dara’s key roles is to help balance our client’s business requirements with the needs of the end-user, resulting in simple to use but meaningful user interfaces.

Dublin, Ireland @Dara83