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Woman Says Company Requires Job Candidates To Complete A 3-Part Unpaid Assignment To Even Be 'Considered' For An Interview

Photo: TikTok / Tima Miroshnichenko / Pexels
Talia, employees in a work meeting

A woman shared that she was shocked after receiving a request from a company to complete an hours-long unpaid assignment as part of her application process.

In a video, TikTok user Talia explained that she refused to continue with the application process for a job position she had been previously interested in, all because they were asking her to complete an entire assignment that wouldn't even guarantee that she was hired.

The employer was making all applicants complete a 3-part unpaid assignment to be 'considered' for an interview.

"I'm looking right now at a three-part assignment that a company sent to me before even interviewing me," Talia began in her video. She said that the company's three-part required assignment would take her several hours to complete.

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Truly shocked at the request, Talia even added that after she was to complete it and send it back, the company could easily plagiarize her work and pass it off as their own with no problem. "This is not just a hypothetical assignment, this is legit work. They're asking you to do work for them," she pointed out.

She continued, saying that along with the three-part assignment, applicants were also required to submit a five-minute video introduction highlighting who they are and why they believe that they're a good fit for the role. 

"This is before they even interview you. This alone with the assignment they're asking for as well as that video introduction would take all day, if not longer," Talia explained. "Companies are wild with what they're asking for."

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Talia ended up responding directly to the company and withdrew her application.

Upon reading all of the requirements, Talia decided to reach out to the company directly to let them know her thoughts on the entire process and that while grateful for the opportunity, she wouldn't be continuing with the application process.

"I responded back because I'm not doing this. I've gone through interviews with companies where they did this with me and I was either ghosted afterward or they used my work and didn't pay me," Talia said. "No, thank you."

On top of that, the job position was for a freelance role that was only going to pay the recipient $20 an hour, which Talia remarked as being "insulting" for the amount of work attached to the position. While she acknowledged that the website did tell applicants what their interview process was like, they never expanded on what exactly would be involved.

"Here's what I wrote back: 'Thank you for the opportunity to potentially interview for this role. I was truly excited about it until realizing there are multiple unpaid assignments included before getting to the interview,'" Talia told the company.

"'I am a professional with over a decade of marketing, communications, content creation, and copywriting experience. I do not partake in assignments in the interview process unless paid my hourly rate.'"

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People praised Talia for drawing a boundary with the employer.

In the comments section, several people shared their own experiences with having their work stolen by the company they were interviewing for after completing an unpaid assignment for them as part of the application process.

"I did one of these and watermarked by work. They reached out to ask me to remove my watermark as it was 'distracting' to the hiring team," one TikTok user shared.

Another user added, "I retract my application and tell them if they demand that much unpaid, the pay wouldn't be worth my time employed."

"I had a potential employer's CEO quote my test work on a CNBC interview the next day. Jaw drop. Still wasn't hired," a third user wrote.

A fourth user sided with Talia, writing that if a company asked them to complete any unpaid assignment they would "request an hourly rate or it's a hard pass."

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Nia Tipton is a Brooklyn-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.