Block/Square’s Interview Process & Questions

The info below is based on conversations with Block/Square engineers in 2023.

Published: June 27, 2023

Square's Interview Process for Software Engineers: 4 Steps

Mid to senior-level engineers interviewing at Block/Square (from now on we'll refer to them as Square) can expect the following process:

  • Recruiter call (30 minutes)
  • Technical phone screen (1 hour)
  • Onsite (4-5 hours)
  • Team matching
Square’s interview process: Recruiter call, Technical phone screen, Onsite, Team matching

Square’s hiring process is a hybrid. Although you apply for a specific team from the get-go, your interviews will likely not be with the people on your team – interviewers are randomly selected from a pool – except for the hiring manager interview.

Note: Square is one of the few companies that will actually give you some constructive post-interview feedback!

The entire process takes about 6 weeks, based on our sources.

Step 1: Recruiter Call

Square’s recruiter call lasts 30 minutes, and it’s pretty standard fare – they’ll ask you about your previous experience, why you’re interested in Square, and what you’re looking for moving forward. They’ll also review the specific role you’re applying for to make sure you understand the expectations and requirements.

It’s really important to not reveal your salary expectations or where you are in the process with other companies. We wrote a detailed post about salary negotiation that lays out exactly what to say when recruiters pressure you to name the first number.

Step 2: Technical Phone Screen

Square’s technical phone screen lasts about an hour. In rare cases, they will let very senior candidates skip this step. In this interview, you’ll pair with your interviewer on a coding problem in CoderPad.

After this round is over, you’ll get high-level feedback about your performance from your recruiter, regardless of outcome (e.g., you might get feedback about your coding speed, your attention to detail, and so on).

Step 3: Onsite

The onsite at Square consists of 4-5 sessions, depending on the role and experience level of the candidate. Most of the interviews, except for the hiring manager interview and the coding rounds, are two-person panels. If you’re a mid to senior-level engineer, you can expect the onsite to look something like this:

  • Coding (2 hours)
  • System design (1 hour)
  • (For L6+) Leadership interview (1 hour)
  • Hiring manager interview (30 minutes)


Square’s onsite includes two separate 1-hour coding interviews, conducted in CoderPad.

System Design

This round is conducted by a two-person panel.

(For L6+) Leadership Interview

This round is conducted by a panel of two very senior engineers (both will be L6 and above).

Hiring Manager Interview

This is a call with a hiring manager from the team you’d be working on. For more junior engineers, it usually takes the form of a “Teach me something technical”. For more senior engineers, it’s usually a deep-dive into a relevant project you’ve worked on in the past.

Types of Interview Questions to Expect at Square


Coding questions at Square are practical, e.g., “Build an app to split a bill with friends”, rather than LeetCode-style. Square has a question bank with approved questions that interviewers can pull from, and they can submit their own questions to it as well, though there’s a rigorous review process:

  • You propose your question
  • It gets approved by other interviewers
  • You try out your question in the wild, and it gets shadowed as well
  • Once it’s fully approved, it goes into a company-wide question bank

Interviewers are also encouraged to layer complexity in their interviews, and a question that might start out simple can go to unexpected places.

Square’s questions, while practical, may touch on the following technical topics/concepts, as you’ll need them to build whatever it is your interviewer tasks you with:

System Design

These will likely be high-level system design questions, and though it’s now retired, one of the more common system design questions at Square was “Design a Hotel booking system”.

Common Square Interview Questions

Below are common questions that interviewers from Square ask on our platform. Since our data comes from mock interviews, questions may not be exactly the same as what you'd see in real interviews.

How Square Makes Hiring Decisions

After each round, interviewers leave feedback and makes a hire or no-hire recommendation. Those are then collected and sent to the hiring manager, who will decide whether to “plead your case” in front of the Hiring Bar (Square’s version of a hiring committee).

Note that you can get mixed feedback from your interviewers and still get moved forward. It really depends on what the hiring manager needs and what they can justify.

Square’s Hiring Bar is composed of 3 people – either eng managers or senior engineers. Your hiring manager takes your resume and interview results and explains why you’d be an asset to their team. Then the Hiring Bar votes, and if you get at least 2 of the 3 votes, you get an offer.

Square Interview Replays

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