I’ve been interviewing with a startup for a Frontend Engineer role. In the interview they said they didn’t have a designer, that their founder and other devs do the design work. I thought “ok so they are still putting something together and don’t care much if the UI is crappy”, and still proceeded with it. I do the take-home test, it took a lot more than the 1-2 hours they said it should take (these estimates never seem realistic), I thought I did a pretty good job and send it back to them. I then got an email back from one of the founders, they really liked the code and my approach, but the UX was not good enough. He asked if I would be willing to iterate on it if given some direction? The direction: design your own version of our product. I refused. I thought this was a developer position, not a designer position.

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    You didn't want to rinse and repeat after all
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    Sounds more like a scheme to get work done for free.
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    @hjk101 I wouldn’t go that far but they are deffinitely cheapening out by trying to hire a dev who will design too instead of hiring a dev and a designer. They say they are paying more than the average salary but they are only paying a low tech lead salary, still cheaper than hiring two people.
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    @hjk101 Doubt it. Imagine how other devs would react if the manager goes "We will be merging this new design written in 2 hours by a candidate as an interview assignment"

    I wouldn't suspect anyone is actually putting any value on code written for interviews unless it was a tiny one man company.
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    @RinseRepeat Good choice to refuse. If the direction is just "do it again but more and better" I feel that's way out of scope for an interview assignment.

    That kind of task is not something I'd ever do as a home assignment. It would be a waste of time if you begin designing something that doesn't match their taste. That kind of assignment seems more suitable for a live coding session where you can continuously ask for feedback. Ridiculous as a home assignment.
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    @jiraTicket I know that recruitment assignments are used to let Devs do work for free (mostly heard about Indian companies). As you can see the assignment is not doable in 2 hours and they request changes afterwards. So it's more likely half a week worth of design. For a lot of sites that is quite a lot of legwork done. Other recruits can take it from there or it's already enough to scam a client.
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