So after a phone interview, a company I'm interested in sends a design exercise that to me seems really excessive for the suggest 2 hour timeframe. Are they trying to throw me a curveball or do they have a poor grasp on what's reasonable? Have others encountered similar exercises?

They attached 15 low fidelity wireframes to the email which they want turned into high-fidelity, which conflicts with their request for me to design my own wireframes. The exercise is below:


Bark Design Challenge

Context: You are a Product Designer working on a mobile application called Bark. The app connects dog owners and walkers together to ensure dogs can get exercise when their owners aren't home. Right now owners have to open the app each day they want their dog walked, and schedule a walk for their dog. Research has found dog owners love using the app, but want to easily schedule a weeks worth of walks in advance. Today, a Product Manager has just sent you over some wireframes of how this feature should work and how he/she thinks it might look.

The Challenge: Take the provided wireframes to hi-fidelity, and provide all necessary materials for engineering to begin working on this feature.

Requirements: - Provide detailed annotations on each action/screen/state so that the enginnering team can easily understand how the new feature works. - Pixel-perfect components based around consistent theming (colors, typeface, shadows, etc.) - Descriptions/examples of how all micro-interactions within components and screens behave (ex. radio button being tapped)

Deliverables: 1. All Design Files (for engineering team) - Clear, concise descriptions of what is happening on each screen - We prefer Sketch or Figma files in your submission

Final Polished PDF (for presentation purposes) Your process (iteration + exploration) between wireframes and final hi-fidelity screens Hi-fidelity screens spanning all states necessary to add a walk in each flow In text, include your approach and thought process on the problem, as well as any research you performed to help inform your decision making. You could also go into detail about how you would initially collect feedback to prove this feature or issue needs attention. Further, what metrics, if any, should be measured to prove the iteration was a success. Things to keep in mind: - Assume the next person to view your submitted files is an engineer. - Don't take the wireframes at face value, challenge the PM's design choices and find out what is best for dog owners (the user) and the product as a whole. i.e. explore different solutions to this feature request. - If you plan on adding motion anywhere, be sure it is clear where and how it should work (gif/mp4's are encouraged). - Don't forget about timeline. Advanced animations and additional features can extend the development process significantly. - Using symbols/components in your design file will help you stay consistent (and really impress us!) A PDF and Sketch file are attached below (15 screens).

Don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or to clarify anything that might be confusing. The team and I are looking forward to your submission!"

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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it hasn't a subject that helps the others, is not about UX directly, is more about recruiting. – Madalina Taina Jul 13 '19 at 7:20

From the look of it, the exercise is definitely excessive and the expectation is unreasonable and unprofessional. 15 screens including rework on wireframes to high fidelity screens should take weeks if not months, depending on the details. No designer will begin working on high fidelity without getting the wireframes approved first. I would suggest you take a pass at this right away.

  • Thank you, that was my reaction as well. It is helpful to hear it from another professional. – user128628 Jul 13 '19 at 19:24
  • Yes agreed, this is a very badly disguised attempt at getting free work. Not only that, but it shows how poorly managed their work processes are. Not a place you want to work at, even if they did hire you after this supposed 'interview process'. – Wendy Wojenka Jul 16 '19 at 8:30

They are trying to use you. Free work disguised as interview test.

  • Could you expand on that? What part of it is excessive? What part is reasonable? – Mayo Jul 16 '19 at 13:17
  • Having to convert 15 wireframes to high fidelity screen sounds more like a freelance project than a design test. If they wanted to check his skills, they could just ask him to create few wireframes and ask him to explain the thought process behind it to see how he reached that solution. Either they have no idea how to select the right candidate or they are trying to mooch off his design skill. Most of the companies have no idea how to even post a job requirement for UX designers, they will include everything from react JS to marketing skills. – Sooraj MV Jul 17 '19 at 9:58

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