Frequently asked questions

How do I come up with a project?


A project is best formulated based on job and role competencies a company is looking to evaluate. We can help companies with specifics on how to construct a project that accomplishes this task.




How are projects defined?


Ambitionary works with the company to organize and choose the type of project. The project is defined and specified based on the criteria for the position. By establishing a checklist of criteria, the project manager is able to reduce selection and performance assessment biases. We recommend the specification be written by a company manager familiar with the role to ensure a project is appropriately structured to accomplish the company goal in the considered time frame.




How are projects structured and what is the time commitment from my team?


The projects are structured based on the company’s normal working environment. We recommend providing candidates realistic expectations of communication styles and work environments. This means that if a company requires its staff to check in at specific milestones, the candidate is also required to do so. As a best practice recommendation, we encourage companies to initiate two check-in sessions per week, even if they are only ten minutes long, just in case there are any questions that need to be clarified, and to ensure that the lines of communication are always open and can be monitored.




What is the ideal time commitment for a project?


The ideal range represents enough time to perform authentic contributing work. Clients typically structure projects averaging 40 hours over 4-8 weeks. 20 - 60 hour projects are a typical project range, however exceptions have gone higher and lower than the range.




What types of projects are there?


The three primary types of projects are: Parallel Projects: Test two or more candidates with the same project by giving them different goals. It is likely that there would be some overlap between two approaches, but you will receive different recommendations. This type of project is helpful to see how each candidate thinks in different ways and how their research approaches determine their outcomes. Component Projects: Projects can be componentized, for example one candidate can complete one component and another candidate could complete another component independently. This type of project is beneficial to explore how candidates manage a situation with dependencies, including if there is a performance gap by another team member. Ongoing Projects: You may have a project that has endless work attached to it, like in sales or data analysis. In this situation you could have more than one candidate complete essentially the same project.




How are candidates sourced? Do you work with my recruitment team?


In addition to our marketplace, we source qualified candidates from multiple sources including major platforms, and through our partnerships with independent recruiters. Then, we match them with companies. We provide internal recruiters, talent managers, or project leaders with a shortlist of two or three options for each project position.




How do you vet candidates?


Ambitionary vets candidates through a multi-step process that includes background checks and references. We perform due diligence to assess a candidate’s character via recommendations.




Who handles the paperwork for microinterns? How are the microinterns classified? Are they employees?


The microinterns are classified as independent contractors and hired by Ambitionary as such. Therefore we do all the filing associated with the positions and we act as a conduit to pay the microinterns.




Can candidates be hired full time?


A candidate may be hired by the company after the conclusion of one or many projects - this is a positive outcome. There is no commitment to hiring by either party. If the candidate is not hired, this is also a positive outcome in that the company completes work and the candidate gains experience and compensation. If hiring does occur, the company is responsible to record this in the company profile as part of the terms of the license and service agreement and pay the hiring service fee to Ambitionary.




How do you limit biases in the hiring process?


The project is defined and specified based on the criteria for the position. By establishing a checklist of criteria, the project manager is able to reduce selection and performance assessment biases.




What happens if I want to terminate a project or a microintern?


If a candidate were to complete unsatisfactory work in the first half of the project as determined by the manager, the project can be terminated. The candidate is paid for half of the project but the company can leverage the remaining 50% as a credit to fund for another project.




Are candidates paid?


Yes. Pay rates for a project are standardized per a schedule based on expected annual salary if hired. Once the project is defined and mapped to a role in your organization, we’ll assign a benchmark pay rate. Fees are due 100% at the start of the project to Ambitionary. We subsequently pay the candidate at the conclusion of the project.




What is the employment status of each project candidate?


The candidate working on the project is paid as a 1099 contractor for Ambitionary. A 1099 contractor status is justified as long as the work is on a project basis, not continuous and the candidate has reasonable control and autonomy which is the general goal of all projects.




How are projects managed?


Each project requires check-ins at least once per week with a manager to answer questions and ensure project blockers are addressed, provide guidance, and aid the project towards delivery in a timely fashion. The project also includes a kickoff, and a final concluding presentation where the candidate shows their findings and/or reviews materials, which allows the company to provide feedback.




How are candidate’s work assessed?


We guide the project manager to specify the deliverables, goals, and a timeline for the project. At the end of the project, the project manager and any other project participants will provide feedback on candidate’s project performance in a structured framework.




Do you offer candidate quality assurance?


If a candidate were to complete unsatisfactory work in the first half of the project as determined by the manager, the project can be terminated. The candidate is paid for ½ of the project by Ambitionary. The company can leverage the 50% credit of funds for another project.




What is the typical project timeline?


Week 1: Project Formulation We work with HR department, the prospective manager and a comparable employee to establish a project based on the job description and evaluative criteria. Week 2: Candidate Search The micro-internship position is posted to our pre-selected candidates and to connected platforms. Our team evaluates potential matches and conducts preliminary vetting, then shortlists up to three candidates per project role to send to the company. Week 3: Confirmation and Contracts The company decides which candidates to work with and sends out NDA’s and work forms to be signed. By the end of Week 3 candidates will have been on-boarded, briefed on requirements, and met their team leader. Weeks 4-8: Project We recommend that projects are a minimum of 10 hours total. Typical projects average closer to 40 hours, with a duration of two to eight weeks. If a company is trying to hire someone who is still working or in school during the process, there should be no more than 5-10 hours of work required per week, anything more than this will not allow the candidates to showcase their best work. Week 8: Hiring Decisions Once the final presentation is given or the final deliverable is sent, the company is required to give the candidate written feedback that is constructive. If 75% of project criteria are met, the company is encouraged to hire the candidate, however there is no obligation to hire any candidate for any reason.




What is an example of a project?


Project Focus: Product Manager Analysis of Product Feature Gaps Goal: This project was to have a candidate perform a feature gap analysis for an aging yet profitable product by interviewing 10 sales people and assessing market requirements through their close to the customer eyes. The deliverable was a 5-10 slide summary with supporting documentation. Structure and Timeline: This project was estimated to take 20 hours over 4 weeks, and priced at $700. There was a project kick off, two weekly status meetings, and a final deliverable presentation. The project team included a Product Management Manager (potential hiring manager), and a sales manager representative. The VP of Product Management participated in the final project review. Outcome: The candidate ended up interviewing 12 sales people, and summarizing feedback and findings, making an innovative project recommendation to the project team. The performance assessment on the candidate was positive and the company determined the candidate had appropriate competencies and cultural fit. The candidate was asked to perform another project while the company was getting ready to release a budget for opening a new entry level product manager role in the next 3 months.