I have applied for a job and I have been selected as one of the top candidates that have passed for the initial interview. After all the process, We are only two left best candidates and we are required to do a technical project exercise within 1 week of deadline. Its been two days and I only finished 20%. the other 80% is still a mystery to me and I have no idea with it. I tried full research and still no growth. Before the technical project exercise, In the interview I have said to the employer that I have no experience with the 80% and they said If ever I would get hired they would train me. I really like the job and I would like to learn from it.

Note*: The company location is far from my town. They have interviewed me online and I've been doing the technical project exercise home based.

How would you say that the technical exercise is hard without the proper training from it from them. Or what are the other options to tackle with this kind of situation.

  • When you say that 80% is a mystery what exactly do you mean? Is it about a language you don't know, a business domain you're unfamiliar with...?
    – maria
    Commented May 21, 2016 at 5:23
  • Yes, a programming language I don't know
    – Jon
    Commented May 21, 2016 at 5:24
  • Can't you learn the basics to do the exercise?
    – maria
    Commented May 21, 2016 at 5:25
  • I've learn some of the basics but I don't know much to deploy it in the exercise.
    – Jon
    Commented May 21, 2016 at 5:27

1 Answer 1


It's pretty ambitious to develop a project in a language you're not familiar with in a week.

As a develop you should be expected to be able to pick up new languages and techniques within weeks (if you're really good), or 3 - 4 months if you're competent. But a large project in a week?

Issues can come up that you might not even be able to solve in a language you are familiar with in that short a time-frame. Be honest with them, but also do your best!

Break the problem down into chunks and try to solve critical pieces. Even if the application doesn't work, or have an interface, it would be very valuable to show that you've built some key methods to showcase your skill.

Also draft up a document of how you would implement the solution. What your logic would be like. Write up some pseudo-code, and flow chart diagrams. Strive to show them that even though you are unfamiliar with the language you have a good head on your shoulders and grasp the logic, and requirements.

That's all you can really do. They already know you are unfamiliar with the language, so contacting them again won't solve anything, and giving up would mean losing this opportunity. Concentrate on making as a good an impression and possible.

  • This helped a lot. Thanks to the advice. They have congratulated me and I have passed and they are now giving me the job offer. Thanks man
    – Jon
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 11:14
  • @Jon - that's awesome! Congratulations!
    – AndreiROM
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 13:11

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