In applying for an open position, I have been informed by the HR that my application will be moved forward.

As part of this recruitment process, however, it is required that I submit a 1000 word essay on my future aspiration. I am also requested to submit a project that I've done that best reflects my analytical and writing skills.

Is this a common step in any recruitment process?

  • Which country is this? and what type of job is it - presumably any previous projects would be the property of your then employer – Neuromancer Feb 19 '18 at 12:43
  • It would depend on the job. If you want this one then play by their rules. – paparazzo Feb 19 '18 at 12:45
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    I have just graduated from University. This is a role in Singapore for the position of data analyst in a consulting firm. – outofuni Feb 19 '18 at 12:46
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    Your three paragraph question is about 70 words. 1000 words essay should not be too hard for you (based on your writing here). Would you mind telling us what bothers you? – scaaahu Feb 19 '18 at 13:07
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    As i stated here, if i were asked to write an essay id be long gone. This isnt school. – John Feb 19 '18 at 15:41

I've seen job application processes that require both more substantial amounts of "work" as apart of a submission and ones that require less. A 1000 word essay is perhaps a little bit on the high side for a technical role in my experience but it's not ridiculous - an A4-sized page of text at 12pt font will typically be about 400-500 words.

The request for an example project is more common, as this will presumably be intended as a demonstration of your technical skills. You mention recently graduating from university so presumably you did something that fulfills these criteria you could use?

The bottom line though is that if you want the job then you'll need to jump through whatever hoops the potential employer wants you to. No-one has a gun to your head making you do this and if you feel like it's too much then, well, don't apply.

  • if this were for a more senior position, it would be ridiculous. But as a new graduate it would seem reasonable to me. Nice answer moto. – Mister Positive Feb 19 '18 at 14:50
  • @Mister why is it too much to ask from a senior position? Should employers not care about the future aspirations or written communication skills of senior staff? – bharal Feb 19 '18 at 14:54
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    @bharal In my field as a senior developer, where opportunities for my skill set are in very high demand, I would not waste my time nor would any companies ask such a thing. – Mister Positive Feb 19 '18 at 14:56
  • @MisterPositive i mean, i get that engineer thought process - but it's just inherently broken. Surely it is of use to a company to know what you want? Surely it is of use to you to know that the company wasn't put off by your aspirations? I would rather we see this kind of interview for senior engineers rather than the dog-and-pony tech quiz interview. – bharal Feb 19 '18 at 15:15
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    @MisterPositive who cares how hot the market is? If you're that talented, don't you want a place that matches your aspirations, and wouldn't you concede that the standard tech interview is just a waste of your time (because you're so hot you're going to get the job?). I'm simply suggesting that ignoring the tech-test interview and getting a candidate to write an essay would be a better scenario, but doesn't work because of the kind of engineering thinking that "communication suxx" – bharal Feb 19 '18 at 15:28

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