man greenscreen TikTok over email (l) man typing on laptop (c) man greenscreen TikTok over email (r)

TippaPatt/Shutterstock @jonathanhurwitz/TikTok (Licensed) Remix by Caterina Cox

‘We all need to start sending these responses’: Job candidate shares how to respond to company asking for free work as part of interview process

'I’m over doing a project and then being ghosted.'


Tiffanie Drayton


Posted on Jan 11, 2024   Updated on Jan 11, 2024, 12:28 pm CST

One jobseeker is fed up with having to do “free labor” during the interview process and believes he has the perfect response to such requests.

In a viral video with over 293,000 views, TikToker Jonathan Hurwitz (@jonathanhurwitz) shared why he thinks interviewees should not do work without pay when trying to land a job.

“I’ve been interviewing for jobs for over a year now,” he began in the clip. “And it seems to be pretty common to complete some sort of assignment.”

Hurwitz said he had done far too much free work while trying to get a job and even had his work essentially stolen by an employer.

“One case in which they actually ended up using something that I, um, that I wrote for them,” he continued. “And I did not get hired.”

The jobseeker said he was pushed over the edge after yet another potential employer asked him to complete a “test task” as a part of his interview process.

“They basically sent me a writing assignment,” he said. “There was a lengthy Word document attached.”

Hurwitz said that the support of a friend helped him find the courage to refuse to do the work without compensation. He said he sent an email to the employer, graciously turning down the opportunity to move into the next steps of the hiring process.

He believes other jobseekers should follow suit.

“If we don’t start sort of pushing back and sending emails like this, the free work is sadly going to continue,” he concluded.

@jonathanhurwitz No, I will not write for free lol. Hooray and high-fives! #knowyourworth #jobinterview #hooray ♬ original sound – jonathanhurwitz

In the comments section, many agreed the hiring process is burdensome and ridiculous.

“The ‘assignments/tests’, personality quizzes, cover letters, one way interviews, ON TOP OF multiple rounds of interviews,” one viewer wrote. “I’m so done.”

“As someone who works in talent acquisition, hiring managers are OUT OF CONTROL,” a second commented.

“Love this so much!!!!” another said. “Did they respond?!”

Other commenters offered up their own advice.

“You should send an invoice to the company that used your work,” one said.

The Daily Dot reached out to Jonathan Hurwitz via TikTok comment for more information.

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*First Published: Jan 11, 2024, 7:00 pm CST