The recently launched Apply With LinkedIn plugin is a great way to reach out and capture quality candidates using the power of the LinkedIn profile. In this post, I'll tell you how it's also a professional plugin that is fast, compliant and runs on open technologies.
Apply With LinkedIn lets candidates skip the long application forms, use their network to solicit referrals, and find people they know at a company. Companies can use the same network to learn more about their candidates, view their recommendations on their profiles, and simplify their application flow to collect more passive candidates.
While Apply with LinkedIn was built to make hiring managers and job seekers happy, our entire plugin framework was built with web developers in mind. To earn a spot on your webpage, we worked hard to create a system that is fast, compliant, and built on open technologies. Read on to learn more about the technology behind Apply, or, if you want to jump straight into the implementation, check out the generator or the documentation.
To avoid unnecessary calls during loading when an API key is provided, the second call in the framework goes to www.linkedin.com in order to set up the environment. It enables LinkedIn to hand out any dynamic data we need, perform any versioning related calls, and provide the hosting page with oauth credentials if the user has already authenticated the web page. The last step (with and without an API Key), is to load our main framework again using appendChild() to avoid blocking the parent page.
HTML 5 Compliant
With all of the Professional Plugins, LinkedIn took the development philosophy that we should behave like guests in our hosting page. That goes beyond blocking the page load though and extends down into the fundamentals of how your document validates. The below sample is a valid HTML 5 page. Check it for yourself at the Experimental W3 Validator.
Built on Open Technologies
When the Platform Framework first launched, we used our own cross-domain communication framework using window.postMessage. Since then, we've moved our code 100% over to easyXDM and have become contributors to the project. When it came to a tradeoff between supporting something in-house or contributing to the larger "good" of the frameworks out there, we chose the community route. The easyXDM library is widely used by many sites and it's a great project for cross-domain message passing. In a later blog post, we'll go into the details and code about how to create cross-domain communication channels when popups, CDNs, and the plugins are all in play. In the meantime, our fork of easyXDM can be found on github in the "li_integrate" branch.