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Sometimes we’d like to give candidates a technical test that’s not specifically measuring their coding skills, such as a data analysis project that measures their ability to extract meaningful information from the files provided.

For these instances, we can use a free-text task; one of the only kinds of CodeSignal tasks that doesn’t involve a browser IDE. The idea is that the candidate would download the attached files, process them according to the task description, and report back with their findings. So while the project would involve some coding, the result would be a written report.

At this point, you might be thinking if it’s just a matter of sending files to the candidate and receiving text back, why wouldn’t we just use email? Well there are 3 main advantages to using a free-text task instead:

  1. We can easily attach files, without email clients intervening based on the filetype
  2. Since it was initiated through the CodeSignal platform, we can track the candidate and impose a time limit on the solution, to ensure they don’t spend too much time on it
  3. The UI supports markdown, so the candidate can easily include code blocks, images, links, or other stylization to their report.

So although the CodeSignal platform excels at automated assessment, it’s also suitable for many cases that would require a manual evaluation of the results.