designbreathing wrote:I'll present the other side for some perspective...
Somebody with your years of experience might need a skills test. If I am doing the math projections right you have 39 years of experience (18+21)which makes you at minimum 59 years old (graduated in early 20s near late 1970s), or if you were consulting while working your corporate gigs then you might be as young as 38 years old. Solidworks did not gain momentum in the market until the late 1990s when you were probably in your early 40s. Again, someone with your years of experience might need a skills test if you have been away from the drivers seat for a period of time. I was told by my physician after age 38 the vision begins to degrade , and from my experience, the stamina for long CAD sessions in front of the screen dramatically decreases.
Design direction means so many things to so many people these days, and with CAD it makes it even more complicated to evaluate a candidates knowledge and skills. It seems a bit odd to me that this kind of interview expectation was not sussed out over the phone by you before a plane ticket was purchased. I assume you had some sort of phone interview before the trip...no?
I've had a few skills tests in my career (including CAD). They felt odd at first because I was taught back in the day that portfolio is all that one needs to get a position, but with the level of fraud these days in all areas of business, these kinds of tests are necessary to evaluate talent before investing for the long haul. People can say anything as well as put anything in their portfolio which are all digitized now in 2016. It is also more efficient to some to do an interview skills tests rather waste time making reference calls before the interview as well.
I think if you'd have past their little test you might have gotten to the more familiar lines of questioning that you were hoping for. A lot of these skills test interviews also measure things like ego, flexibility and whether or not to proceed with serious inquiry. If the candidate can't or won't do the cad skills test then that tells both parties that it probably would not work out for either of you.
What this really reveals is that the demand side of the market does not understand design, designers and how they are valued. Computer skills are at the foundation level of any job these days. That is what they measure first when hiring resources. This is indeed short sighted and shows poor human resource hiring skills.
MK19 wrote:The first job interview I had after finishing my Master's degree I was given a SolidWorks test... told to draw a cube by someone with lower qualifications and experience than me. Rather patronising and pointless.