I really didn't know how to name this question.

The problem is that our app should show a different home/start screen depending on the state the user is (Searching for a job/ inside of a recruitment process / Working).

Right now what we have done is to have it with 3 tabs and depending on the state they are the app opens on the right tab.

But after some user testing and focus groups a lot of user do not really understand the tab navigation. It might be the copy we are using but we are not 100% sure.

So my question is what would you do? or if you know of any other app that does something similar?

The most similar I can think of is Uber, where the start screen is search for a ride and then the user state change to riding and the apps open on the current ride. But our case is a little bit different

Thanks! enter image description here

3 Answers 3


Your tabs do not look like tabs. They look like buttons. Even more detrimental is that your unselected navigational items look like grayed out, inactive buttons. This is likely causing an affordance issue, as buttons denote actions whereas tabs denote navigation. It's possible that your users are avoiding the tabbed navigation as they expect it to launch some particular action.

To remedy the situation, give a shot at a more classic tabular navigation UI more similar to the one below.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Huh, I looked at it and saw tabs -- but that's only due to the bar being continuous, which is quite subtle. I probably only noticed it because the image is shown so large.
    – SilverWolf
    Commented Oct 9, 2018 at 22:11

I completely agree that your navigation doesn't look they way users expect based on typical design patterns. I highly suggest fixing the presentation of the tabs before assuming that the structure is incorrect.

Apple's Guidelines state that a tab bar should appear at the bottom of the screen and traditionally includes icons.

Apple Tabs

Google's Material Design places tabs at the top and uses a solid color bar combined with text opacity to denote the active tab.

enter image description here


You shouldn't use tabs for a step-by-step user flow. Use a progress indicator and label each step as step 1/2/3 or with arrows.

In addition to the main user flow, if you need to let the user browse info while they maintain the current state in the flow, this should be activated by a corner button or bottom tab. So basically, the step-by-step flow belongs to one tab, while the freestyle browsing belongs to another tab, and they don't affect each other in terms of state.

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