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This question already has an answer here:

Please note that I'm asking for getting feedback after tech interview, which is different from other interview stages from my opinion.

I had tech interview in a form of a coding exercise for a startup (I applied for the second developer position).

A week after my coding exercise the HR person got back to me, and told me that my code wasn't up to the standard they are looking for. I asked if it's possible to get some feedback about my code because I felt, that I did my best. He told me, that the developer is very busy, but he will try to get feedback (I guess he just wanted to shake me off).

I think I have the right to get feedback for the following reasons:

  • If they have a standard, it must be easy to provide well defined feedback on my code.
  • It's not like I'm asking their opinion about my personality (which is harder to explain, and a more sensitive topic).
  • They gave my a coding exercise, what I can publish online anytime (maybe to get feedback from others). I was handling the description confidentally, so that they can reuse it for other interviews. I know it's not a huge deal to come up with a new one, but if they already gave this to some applicants, it's easier to compare the them based on the same exercise.
  • If I think about their hiring process it was just a waste of time for me, and I couldn't even learn from it.

So my question is: Should I contact the developer? (I can IM him or send an email). Does it count as blackmailing if I say I'll try to get feedback online about my code if he can't provide me any?

marked as duplicate by Alec, paparazzo, gnat, The Wandering Dev Manager, Chris E Mar 29 '16 at 13:21

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    They owe you nothing. It is a useless chase. Try going through github to see quality code from the likes of apache,google etc. – Learner_101 Mar 29 '16 at 10:57
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    "I think I have the right to get feedback" - this is the wrong attitude to have when asking for feedback. When you ask for feedback, it is not a right, but a privilege. Treat it that way. If no feedback comes, that's that. – Brandin Mar 29 '16 at 11:19
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    Alternatively for this situation (coding challenge), consider posting your (anonymized/modified) solution to a forum like Code Review or StackOverflow (search and you'll see this has been done before). Then you can get feedback from people specifically visiting the forums for that purpose. "Does it count as blackmailing if I say I'll try to get feedback online about my code if he can't provide me any" - Don't try to "blackmail" like this. If you want to get feedback online, just do that. – Brandin Mar 29 '16 at 11:21
  • Ah, gotta love the millennial mindset. You don't have any right to pester someone. You're done. Move on. If you want code review, go to SE's code review site. I've used them and they are brutal, but VERY helpful. Just remember to leave your ego at the door if you don't want it bruised. – Retired Codger Mar 29 '16 at 12:33
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Should I contact the developer? (I can IM him or send an email).

You could try and contact the developer, but don't be surprised if you don't hear back. If they really wanted to give feedback to all the applicants, they would have given it to you already.

If I think about their hiring process it was just a waste of time for me, and I couldn't even learn from it.

Remember, while feedback is valuable and important to you, the developer gains nothing. And if you are given feedback, then feedback must be given to everyone. Coding exercises aren't designed to help you improve your skills - they are designed to help find an applicant who best meets the hiring company's requirements.

The process wasn't a waste of time. It was a necessary step because you wanted the job. You learned that you were not considered up to their standards.

Does it count as blackmailing if I say I'll try to get feedback online about my code if he can't provide me any?

I'm not sure about the term "blackmailing", but threatening the developer that way is extremely unlikely to get you any feedback on your coding skills. You may get some feedback on your personality that you wouldn't like.

You would be best served to just put this behind you and move on in your job search. If you remember the details of the coding exam you could study it on your own and in that way learn what you might have done better.

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As harsh as this sounds the truth is you showed your best and they didn't like it for whatever reason. No big deal. Just move along. If you are a entry-mid level developer be sure to say that in your resume. If you said you were a senior developer and you're actually not, then maybe that is why they felt your code wasn't up to par with that level.

To be honest I rarely do code exercises for companies if it takes more than an hour for this very reason. It's a complete waste of time to me to write large amount of code with no guarantee that I would even get a interview. With that said there are plenty of jobs that offer interviews first then maybe a short exercise.

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