As a job seeker, I often have the opportunity to go through a design test to further demonstrate my abilities, even though I have included a portfolio and CV, there are still companies who want to see the applicant's abilities by giving a design test. I'm a bit confused about how to send the test results correctly, can I put a watermark or make an explanation as to why I made the design like that or is it better for me to send the original file straight away? But I'm a little worried about sending the original file because my status as an applicant could still be rejected, whereas my design results can be used immediately

  • Ask the company about this situation and see what they say. A good company should use a fake or old situation so it shouldn't be able to do be used Commented May 7 at 14:23

1 Answer 1


Reputable companies aren't using "tests" as a way to get free work done. Caveat: These "tests" should be relatively simple projects that don't entail any more than an hour or two of work - an advertisement, poster, flier, etc. They shouldn't be full manuals or brochures, or anything of that nature. Anyone asking you to create a full trifold brochure as a "test" may not be representing a reputable company.

It's speculative work. Such tests are essentially a loss leader for the applicant -- something which must be done, understanding there may be no return. However, failing to do it just means there's zero chance of ever getting any return whatsoever.

If you want the job, do the test and send it. Don't watermark anything or otherwise appear to be "protective" over the work. That just gives the impression you may be difficult to work with.

For companies, it's really not about getting you to work for free - although that is the gist. It's about seeing how you problem solve visual challenges.

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