Skillz Product Design Lead Interview Questions | Glassdoor

Skillz Product Design Lead Interview Questions

Interviews at Skillz

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Product Design Lead Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate in San Francisco, CA
Declined Offer
Negative Experience
Average Interview

Application

I applied online. The process took 3 weeks. I interviewed at Skillz (San Francisco, CA) in July 2018.

Interview

Skillz's hiring process is clearly a work in progress because there were many contradictions between what was communicated by the hiring manager and various recruiting coordinators throughout my experience. At times the company really showed that its negative reviews on Glassdoor were not hyperbole from disgruntled former employees.

It's a fact that they've been trying to fill this role for some time and they treat senior experienced candidates as if they were junior just coming out of school. I had to even prove that I was proficient in certain design tools, as in do I know how to work in Sketch. They boast about how selective they are and how only 1% make it to the final round but the reality is much more likely that they scare off really good people with their draconian and dogmatic expectations. It was very bizarre.

I made it all the way to the final round and can validate others claims that their CEO shows strong megalomaniac tendencies. He referred to himself as a "very distinct flavor of ice cream" which suggests he knows of his reputation and doesn't care very much about it. It's his company and he get's to run it the way he likes, but I would advise designers to stay far away from this organization. I have over 15 years experience in leading design within companies of all sizes and industries and this is the place that others warn you about with their dubious ethical values and their comfort and/or denial of their participation in certain dark practices within the industry.

They will ask you to work for free on their own product and justify it because "facebook does the same thing" (which is completely false, having experienced their hiring practices) and this was verbatim from one of the recruiting coordinators when they pushed back on the suggestion that they could offer a daily rate if they wanted actual work on their own product.

In the end, I told them I no longer wanted to be considered for the role because they found fault in my "not producing something visual" for the final presentation, which is laughable and shows that they have no idea what they're talking about. I presented a prototype that showed structure and clearly communicated a direction.. what they wanted was an aesthetically pleasing static comp of their product. It didn't matter that I had a deep portfolio showing aesthetic skills and how they think that the latter reflects a better understanding of what they actually need is truly a mystery.

What it does show is that there is no room for you to interpret their requests. You quite literally have to follow every direction and suggestion they throw at you even if it makes no sense or is not ethical. The other reason for their hesitation was that I had yet to play some of the games they've partnered with, (even though the role I was interviewing for was not relevant to gameplay).

While it's a fair ask to expect you to do your research (and I spent quite a bit of time reading up on their company press and their Glassdoor reviews) I can't stress enough about how unrealistic it is to expect you give them 100% of your time and focus when you haven't even been hired yet. This is the kind of place that tries to make you feel that you are lucky enough for them to even consider hiring you and shows no empathy for personal lives. They are shady and their offices carry an undertone of body odor, feces and urine due to where they're located - just steps from one of the worst intersections in San Francisco.

It may not be too much to consider the fact that their leadership either a) was not sensitive to this or b) did not care about it enough for them to consider a different more professional and safe location for their employees. But what I find ironic in a sort of cosmic way is that it seems so fitting for the poopy experience I had with them.

Stay away from this place.

Interview Questions

  • There wasn't anything difficult, just extremely bizarre.   2 Answers

Reasons for Declining

My decision to remove myself from consideration came from the fact that after I finished their process, I was congratulated by the hiring manager and told I would be receiving an offer only later (next day) to be asked if I would be willing to start as a contractor because they were "not sure I was passionate enough about the company." This "what is going on" question was present throughout the entire experience.

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