2020 Staffing Industry Website Trends

Jeff Pelliccio

Director of Marketing, Infinity Consulting Solutions

Jeff Pelliccio serves as the Director of Marketing for Infinity Consulting Solutions, a leading talent resourcing provider for Technology, Accounting & Finance, Legal & Compliance, and Corporate Support. Jeff plays an integral role in supporting the corporate vision and leading the marketing department to advance and evolve the digital marketing strategy, customer engagement, lead and demand generation, marketing automation, and sales and marketing alignment. Jeff has been published as a thought leader, has been in the staffing industry since 2014, and has over 17 years of business development experience making him an expert in his role.

Each year, many companies in the staffing industry include website redesign projects in their calendars to boost digital presence and improve user experience. You may have witnessed it yourself how decisions on a website project can be overwhelming to handle, be it an enhancement or two or a complete overhaul.

Whether you are looking to revamp your site for marketing purposes or simply making it up-to-date, you’ll definitely have your work cut out for you. So, knowing the latest website trends can be a good starting point for making sure you’re on the right track and you’re keeping your audience engaged all throughout their website journey. 

From minimalistic navigation and modern design to using artificial intelligence, here are a few of this year’s top website trends that you should keep a close eye on in the staffing industry and, of course, implement to offer a refreshing web experience. 

Split Screen Contrast

In staffing, you’ll most likely be targeting two primary persona groups: candidates and hiring managers. As you may well know, these two groups have opposing value propositions. This website design element enables visitors to define who they are in your ecosystem. Once they define who they are, you can then align your website content directly to their self-identified persona.

It’s a big plus if your marketing automation platform is connected to your website. This will allow you to record the user’s behavior and send all the information directly to your Applicant Tracking System (ATS) or Customer Relationship Manager (CRM). This type of connectivity will especially come in handy in database segmentation going forward.  

Overlapping Layers 

When we say overlapping layers, we are referring to the overall static layering design effects that are applied when a user scrolls through the page, most widely known as parallax. 

Parallax is another trendy element in website designs — although, there haven’t been many updates to parallax since its introduction 10+ years ago. You can most definitely incorporate it on your site’s design, but be careful not to overuse it. Too many elements on one page can be distracting, which may negatively impact your users’ experience.


Throughout the years, whitespace has seen its share of increasing and decreasing popularity. Employing a “clean design” has always been vital, but this year specifically saw a major uptick in whitespace as a major trend in web page designs. 

The purpose of this website design element is to provide all content with a stronger positioning point that is free from distractions. When using whitespace, remember that its name shouldn’t be taken literally. Although its name has reference to the color white, whitespace could be white, red, purple, black, or any other brand color. The point is simply to employ a clean design.   

Solid Frames  

This website design element and aesthetic was especially popular in the early 2000s, but with time, it faded away as full-width gained more popularity. Not everyone is a fan of solid frames, although they do a great job in drawing the attention of users. This is beneficial as the user will be completely focused on the message inside the space. 

Dark Mode Options 

In 2010, dark mode options were introduced via Windows Phone 7 for conserving energy on OLED screens. For the past 10 years, this design element has been gaining significant traction, especially among major tech powerhouses. For example, Samsung released dark mode options on their devices in December 2019, Apple did the same in June 2019, and Google followed suit in August 2019. 

While some graphic designers prefer to stick to lighter tones and shades, we highly recommend looking into dark mode options if this is a design element you’d want to consider for your company’s website.

Before you completely disregard the idea, take some time to assess this element from the lens of user experience. Companies like Samsung, Apple, and Google that have adapted dark mode options have significant budgets set aside to research the functionality and usability of dark modes to ensure highly adaptive user experience. Website design elements should always serve to delight the person engaging with your brand and improve the overall user experience.

Mix Photos with Graphics or Illustrations

Overlaying photos with graphics or illustrations can be tricky and is sometimes seen as perfectly imperfect, so you must consider balance and context when doing it.

Adding graphics or illustrations over images allows you to add a human element to your brand’s story. Not only does it provide viewers with a glimpse into the world of your organization, but it also gives them a look into the type of experience your brand is most likely to provide them with. 

Mixing photos with graphics or illustrations is a great way to amplify your brand’s tone in a way that resonates with the viewer. As mentioned, doing so will give your brand a more human look and feel. 

As you showcase your brand’s human side, viewers will discover more ways to relate to your content. This will enhance their digital interaction and engagement with your organization significantly. 

Minimalistic Design

When it comes to minimalistic design, it’s important to tread lightly. Your website design shouldn’t be so minimal that it negatively affects the user by creating a poor user experience. At the same time, however, pulling back on tradition and letting go of some of the historically formal elements of web design could actually help make your user experience more engaging.

Website Navigation

Another element you’ll want to rethink is your navigation menu. Approach your website from the user’s perspective and take the journey as if you are a visitor on your site. Doing so will allow you to properly assess your current page flow and determine what works and what doesn’t.

As you rethink your site’s navigation, keep one thing in mind: Less is more. This holds true whether you’re writing an article, designing office space, or coming up with a new design for your web page.

When it comes to your website’s navigation, you may even choose to incorporate other design elements, such as minimalistic design. This type of design will allow your content to shine while giving users simple control over navigating your website with ease.

Mobile Thumb-Friendly UX   

As new trends in web page design continue to emerge, here’s one question you should begin asking yourself: Is your organization’s website mobile thumb-friendly? 

The concept of mobile thumb-friendly user experience (UX) has come about more frequently as smartphones gained popularity in the marketplace. When it comes to web design, you must consider how users reach your site and interact with it. Nowadays, it’s especially common for users to reach and interact with a website through their mobile devices. This is especially true in the staffing industry.

Today, nearly 70% of the jobseeker community accounts for mobile users. Given that over half of job seekers are most likely visiting your site from a mobile device, you should give a considerable amount of thought into what your website’s mobile experience is like. How convenient is the scrolling? Are your navigation menus easy to locate? Is your overall design thumb-friendly?

The smoother your mobile experience is, the easier it becomes for users to navigate your website from their devices. This, in turn, makes it simple for users to interact with your website’s content, including jobs. The more comfortable visitors feel on your website, the more likely they are to interact with your organization throughout their decision process as well as the application and buying cycle.

Animations and Micro-Interactions

What grabs your attention on a website? If we’re being completely honest here, it is clear that shiny things and moving elements are more likely to grab someone’s attention over a static image on even the most well-designed web page.

When users visit a page on your website, they will most likely scroll through that page for 5-10 seconds and check for something interesting. A full video may be overkill in this short span, so short repeatable GIFs and cinemagraphs provide the perfect compromise. They quickly draw the user’s attention straight to the content you would like them to focus on.

Micro-interactions are very similar to animations in that they bring movement to an otherwise static page. You may not know it by name, but you have most likely seen micro-interactions in the form of progression meters that let users know that a page is loading. Another example of micro-interaction includes automated messages that users receive from a chatbot.

When incorporating micro-interactions into your website’s design, the user experience must be of prime importance. Think about your client’s journey on your website, and brainstorm ways to interact with them in case there are glitches on your site or if they need to wait longer. To help you set the right expectations, use micro-interactions to overcommunicate with your visitors and assure them that what they are experiencing on your website is normal and is part of the process.

Oversized Text and Text Heroes

We already talked about minimalistic design, but what about oversized elements, which are the complete opposite? Well, they also made it to the list of top trends. Big, bold typeface and fonts against a clean, sleek, and modern design will really help you call attention to your website’s content.

As you play around with placement and orientation, don’t be afraid to go to the extreme. To ensure legibility, though, you may want to ask around for people’s interpretation of your design.

This website design element is best when combined with every ounce of your imagination. You will find that stretching your creativity here can yield great results and even greater user experience.

Contextual Tech and AI

One example of contextual technology is progressive profiling — the act of gradually defining a user as they navigate through your website. In this case, users are defined based on their behaviors and form fills on your website. Typically, progressive profiling is built into the Content Management System (CMS) platform of your website. 

If your CMS does not provide this option, you may want to use a marketing automation software that can help you enable these features. However, do mind that any automation tool outside your website would require you to have pages built in their ecosystems to control the experience.

As for artificial intelligence (AI), your ATS or CMS will be your best friends in your website improvement initiatives. Your data is stored in these two central hubs. Therefore, you would want to gather, assess, and execute by taking advantage of these platforms. 

Some organizations have already started experimenting with AI and machine learning for a more efficient onboarding process for both the candidates and the back office. If you’re planning to implement AI as well on your onboarding process, it’s best to manage it in the source rather than an outside tool, so you’ll have better controls in place.

Retro Style with a Modern Design

Whether it’s in digital marketing collateral, print ad, packaging, or fashion, you may have noticed that retro styles seem to be making a strong comeback. Although it has a very nostalgic feel, the retro style has become universally accepted and adopted.

When using a retro style, you’ll want to make sure that your color and stylistic selections align with your branding. To correctly execute this website design element, you still need to be “on-brand” to ensure that viewers are aware of where you are coming from. 

Make sure as well to incorporate modern design elements into your retro style. These modern design elements can include whitespace, solid frames, or minimalistic navigation. Retro style without a modern flair has the potential to feel boring, old, and outdated.  

Bold Color and Gradients

When choosing which colors to go with your retro style design, look for bold, strong colors that align with your branding. You may also want to use gradients as a means of transition. You can use gradients, for example, to transition from whitespace to a space that is more heavily and overtly branded. 

3D, Horizontal Scrolling, and Everything in Between

When it comes to trends in web page designs, your options are endless — from 3D, voice user interface, and geometric shapes to horizontal scrolling and beyond. While many of these trends can serve to enhance the user experience and engagement on your website, take note that they’re also very dependent on the type of business, customer, and brand that your organization portrays. You can get innovative and creative, but when thinking about design elements, keep in mind that they should never overpower your message or create distractions for the user. 

At the end of the day, these trends in web page design will become a valuable tool in enhancing user experience and engagement in your organization’s website. Think of these trends as options to incorporate into your ideation. And the best part about options? They’re not mandatory. Feel free to gather more ideas and choose wisely on whichever designs suit your organization and audience well.