The Quick Report

Gen Z Job Prospect Refuses 90-minute Task, ‘Seemed like a Lot of Work’

A post has gone viral, now nearing 8 million views, after an employer was shocked by a Gen Z applicant who refused to complete a task that was required as part of the hiring process, claiming it was “too much work.”

It’s not unusual for employers to ask job applicants to perform certain tasks as a way of testing them to make sure they have the skills and qualifications necessary to perform the job they are seeking. In fact, in certain job titles, it’s a given that an employer will test you. Ditto for employment agencies and job placement services.

The employer took to social media with a brief synopsis of what went down in the job interview with the unnamed person.

Me: “Really enjoyed the call. Please see attached financial modeling test.”

Gen Z applicant: “This looks like a lot of work. Without knowing where I stand in the process, I’m not comfortable spending 90 minutes in Excel.”

Me: “Well… I can tell you where you stand now.”

The Internet Has Thoughts

This post has sparked an online debate, with many divided on both sides of the issue.

Comments That Agree With the Employer

“Couldn’t have given you a better signal,” another agreed.

“We require applicants to do a 1-hour graphic design test,” one commenter said.

“If people raise concerns about doing an unpaid test, it is the best feeling in the world because I know we dodged a bullet,” another chimed in.

“Having made applicants do intense case studies when I was at a boutique I bank, I’ll tell you they’re 100% worth it,” another said. “I don’t care if it’s a lot of your time. It’s unreal how hard it is to find good people. I’ve watched people that present themselves so well fall flat when asked.”

“I once had a place give me a four-hour data analysis and modeling test packet,” one person recalled. “Told me they loved the work, and then the next day laid off 30% of staff. I get why people can be suspicious. 90 mins (if true) seems reasonable.”

“Because I currently teach Gen Z,” one user wrote, “this unfortunately doesn’t surprise me.”

Read More: How to Find a Remote Job

Comments That Agree With the Job Prospect for Refusing the Task

“I don’t mind doing work for free to show what I can do,” another person added. “But last time I did this, the company ghosted me after I spent a weekend on a take-home. So I don’t mind this stance. If you don’t like me protecting my time now, you’re not going to like me working for you anyway.” 

“Applicant is right,” one person argued. “Unless you offered to compensate for that 90 minutes. He has no idea how many applicants remain in the process. He probably has interviews with other businesses. Effort vs reward is definitely not there for this. Good for him.”

“Because he values his time?” another asked. “The kid isn’t wrong just because we accepted this type of behavior from the Boomer employers our whole lives.”

“To be fair, a lot of places are just using applicants for free labor,” one person said, conspiratorially. “The job doesn’t exist. The ‘test’ is the only work they need done.”

“A response I would have actually enjoyed would have been: ‘I’m good at this and don’t work for free. Give me $1,000 and I’ll break this deal down in amazing detail.'” one person suggested. “Would have gladly paid and probably hired.”

“So they didn’t want to give their time away for free for a job they have no idea if they’re even close to getting, so you ruled them out?” one commenter said.

“Capitalism is grim,” another proclaimed.

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