My First Dev Interview

I had my first UX/UI dev interview this week! I thought I’d just share a little about my experience.
The face-to-face interview consisted of brief introductions, some chit-chat, and mostly specifications for my take-home project. Nothing remarkable, but it was nice that this gentleman was thoughtful enough to work with my hours (I’m still a full-time employee elsewhere).
This take home project was two wireframes for a generic storefront – one a landing page and one a product page. He walked me though what things needed to look like and how they were to behave, especially on mobile. Everything was to be styled with Twitter Bootstrap 4, and there were to be no extra styles/stylesheets. I had four hours to do as much as I could, and to do my best work. There was more than four hours worth of work presented, and my interviewer said as much. I was also supposed to keep track of my time and what I worked on.

So, how do I think it went? Horribly. But that’s ok. Here are my thoughts on my performance.
First of all, I used Toggl to track my time. It’s nice and I like it, but for this exercise I could not stop seeing it as a count-down timer. Performance anxiety is real.
I chose to work on what was probably the harder page, in hindsight. It had four carousels on it, where as the other page only had one and text. Sonic facepalm.
While I am comfortable the Bootstrap, I am not proficient. This was a cool exercise to build a, oh, one-step-up-from-simple website using just BS. It can be done, but you have to know how to do it. It turns out, I don’t.
Also, I was told to do all my research on my own time, and to not track it. This kind of makes me nervous with this employer, since researching and troubleshooting solutions are about 95% of coding. I am hoping that this was just for this exercise.
Honestly, I probably spent 10 hours on this project, but only tracked 3 hours of coding and troubleshooting. Pretty sure I failed to satisfy the intent, but I got such a pitiful amount done that maybe I broke even. Oh by the way, it’s not done. At all.

But for all of that, I put myself out there for a job after just 8 months of teaching myself how to code. I was honest with myself and my interviewer about where I spent my time. Do I like the state of my project? Hell no. I’m embarrassed to turn it in as it is. But I am proud of what I have accomplished in 8 months.

This time last year, I was depressed because I hate my current job and I couldn’t see a way out. I cried every day because I felt like I was going nowhere in my life. Now here I am; not only is there a light at the end of that tunnel, but I’m close enough to feel a breeze. I also bought myself a Bootstrap 4 course on Udemy because, well… ;P

One thought on “My First Dev Interview

  1. K, I hope that these few words of wisdom might help alleviate your stress the next time you go into interview. First and foremost remind yourself that if you made it to the interview that the manager or supervisor believes that you can do the job. Let that sink in for a moment. Yes, tha’ts right, the people interviewing you believe you have the skill set to do the job. It also means your resume is working! This leads you to realize that the interview is really about the company wanting to know if you are a good fit. Meaning can you get along and will you fit in the culture. And further realize that the interview goes both ways. You are interviewing them to find out if how they work and how the manager manages. You should consider if the position is right for your career direction. I know it tough starting out and often you must take the first offer that comes along. Over your career you will want to work your way out of that mantality and begin to choose positions that are a good fit for you. I hope this helps and good luck. Remeber help is just a url away.

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