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On coding challenges.

wintermute21 profile image John Best ・1 min read

As a dev candidate who's been unemployed for a while now, I see a lot of companies wanting you to take these timed tests to implement some challenge or algorithm. These have been criticized for not meaning much.
And I myself am not sure if I want to feed into a culture that perpetuates this kind of meaninglessness, however, should I bite the bullet for the sake of a job or hold out on principal?

Discussion

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The first question you should answer is...what are your goals?

I agree with you in the sense that they might not mean much, i.e., you might not even utilize those skills at your job. But I also believe that knowing how to solve those challenges helps display a particular way of thinking and problem solving.

If the key to getting the jobs you want entail knowing how to solve those problems, then I say bite the bullet. In that sense I don't think it's meaningless.

Who knows though - you might be able to find a job where you won't need to prove that knowledge. But it's as they say, better safe than sorry.

In any case, best of luck on your journey!