Put a design challenge from a job interview in my portfolio?


#1

Hey everyone,

I hope that one of the more experienced here can help me out with this problem.

Recently I applied for a Junior UX design position. They invited me for an interview and sent me a design challenge which was basically “Do a redesign of one of our landing pages.” I did the redesign and went to the interview, where I got the feeling that the Design lead I was talking to liked my work.

Unfortunately, I still didn’t get the job and they hired someone else. But I did not have the feeling that it was because of how I solved their challenge but other reasons (probably lack of experience). So I’m now thinking about putting the work I’ve done in my portfolio since it’s a nice small project and shows that I can also work with already existing products.

But do you think that it would be smart to showcase work that didn’t land me a job? I mean, what if I get asked about the reasons to do this challenge by other employers and had to tell them “I did this for another job, but they didn’t hire me” – wouldn’t that paint a negative picture of my design expertise?

What are your thoughts?

Thanks very much in advance!


#2

I do think so, yes. People don’t get jobs for many reasons so you may as well get some value from the time spent putting that design together.


#3

People add redesign projects to their portfolio all the time, and that’s what you’ve done. Position it as a personal redesign project rather than a failed interview assignment, beef it up with some retrospective research if you can and definitely put it in your portfolio if you dont have anything else.


#4

I’ve included photos from a workshop I ran for an interview in my portfolio as it still shows an example of what I can do. Employers are aware that you might not have got a job simply because there was another more suitable candidate. They don’t expect you to land every single job you apply for.


#5

Question: did you get any feedback from the company? If so, you may want to incorporate that into your work before you use it as a portfolio item.

I also wouldn’t paint this as a failed design challenge for a job you didn’t get. I’d paint this as a voluntary re-design you did as a passion project. To me, at least, this is true - it’s a piece you worked on in your own time, without pay or compensation, as a way to harness your love of design.

There’s no need to open the “I didn’t get the job I created this for” can of worms if you can avoid it.