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Asana Software Engineer Interview Guide

Learn how to prepare for the Asana Software Engineer interview and get a job at Asana with this in-depth guide.

Asana's mission is to "empower teams to do great things together." It's no wonder that Asana is one of the most popular startups to work at for software engineers, where they emphasize values like teamwork and clear, crisp communication.

Asana's software engineer interview process is known to focus on specific concepts like object-oriented programming, and includes a full two-hour coding interview exercise to evaluate your candidacy for the role.

Read on in this guide to learn more about what the Asana software engineer interview is like, and our tips on acing the interview and landing that Asana software engineer role.

Interview Process

Interview Stages

Typically, there are four stages to software engineer interviews at Asana: recruiter screen, technical phone screen, onsite, and reference check.

Recruiter Screen

The recruiter phone screen is fairly straightforward and consists mostly of questions based on your resume and fit for the software engineer role. The recruiter may ask about your interests, your past experiences, and why you want to work at Asana. During this call, the recruiter can answer any questions you have about the interview process.

No need to prepare much for this one! Review your resume to speak from it, and be sure to research a bit more about Asana, like their company mission.

Technical Phone Screen

In the technical phone interview, you'll spend one hour with a software engineer at Asana answering a technical question. Generally, the questions in the technical phone screen are a bit lighter in-depth, but will cover any of the categories of questions discussed in the next section. Usually, this phone screen will involve an object-oriented design problem, which Asana emphasizes more than other companies.


The onsite Asana software engineer interview consists of four rounds:

  1. Behavioral and object-oriented design round
  2. Object-oriented design round and algorithms #1
  3. Object-oriented design round and algorithms #2
  4. One two-hour coding project Also included in the on-site is a coffee chat with an Asana team member where you can ask questions and learn about the company. More on how to solve these problems in the next section of this guide.

Reference Check

Lastly, Asana asks for two reference checks: one from a manager and one from a peer, before finalizing their offer.

Sample Interview Questions

Asana's software engineering interviews generally break down into the following three categories. According to the Exponent community, Asana focuses heavily on object-oriented design problems, so be sure to emphasize these in your interview prep.


Asana's coding interview is a two-hour coding exercise where they'll ask you to solve coding questions (you'll get to pick the programming language and editor). These interviews are focused on how you go about solving the problems, and less focused on syntax errors or reference knowledge (in fact, you can use online resources during the exercises).

Here, it's critical to be thoughtful about how you reason through the problem, and explain your thought process more than you would in a typical coding assignment or exercise. Asana wants to see that you can think through the problem carefully and in a way that demonstrates advanced engineering knowledge. At the end of the interview, an engineer will sit down with you to talk through your solutions. This is a great opportunity to not only explain what you coded but the flaws and tradeoffs you considered when solving the exercise. Self-awareness of your own code's weaknesses and strengths is a big plus to the interviewer.

The best way to prepare for these interviews is to practice coding problems. You can start with our database of recently asked software engineer interview questions.

Algorithms and Data Structures

Asana emphasizes data structures problems in their algorithms & data structures questions. Be sure to review concepts like hash tables and linked lists before your interview. Asana recommends understanding, for each data structure, the different types of operations that are suitable, and the relevant run-time complexity.

One way to shine in these interviews is to always mention and consider edge cases. Is there a particularly tough "worst-case" scenario for one of the data structure's implementations? How might a certain data structure outperform another if we expect the input data to already be sorted? Considering questions like these and "zooming out" to think about the broader implications of certain data structure selections will elevate your interview answer.

To prepare for these interviews, we recommend reviewing our data structures and algorithms modules in our software engineering course and practicing data structures questions in our interview question database.

Modeling and Design

Asana's software engineer design interview questions can seem daunting, since they involve taking real-world problems and breaking them down into small components. Asana recommends answering these questions with a bias toward simplicity - don't overcomplicate your answer, instead, focus on clarifying the problem as much as possible, and then illuminating a path forward that is clear and concise.

The best way to prepare for system design interviews is to watch our practice system design interviews like this one on Facebook's news feed, and try your hand at some practice system design questions in our interview question database.

Hiring Decision

Asana looks at the following non-exhaustive categories to evaluate candidates.

Technical Design: Simple and Robust

Applying to system design interviews, can you apply clarity and simplicity to complicated problems, and communicate this to the interviewer?

Programming: Abstractions, Code, and Algorithms

How do you reason about data structures and algorithms, and can you code in a way that's effective, clear and efficient?

Communication: Articulate your mental model

Software engineering isn't just about coding - it's also about effectively communicating your ideas and concepts. Are you able to do this effectively and translate the technical concepts into human-speak?

Collaboration: Would be a good teammate

How do you collaborate with teammates? What experiences do you have negotiating conflict with others? Can you follow instructions and guidance from your interviewer when appropriate?

Learning: Absorbs information and avoids repeating mistakes

Asana values engineers who learn with curiosity - do you listen to the interviewer and improve upon previous mistakes? Can you take feedback well?

Autonomy: Prioritizes well and anticipates problems

Asana values engineers who can jump in and fix problems, even when they may not be their own. When solving interview questions, are you focusing on esoteric issues, or are you tackling the highest priority aspects of the question? Can you anticipate edge cases and issues that might come up later in the interview?

Learn everything you need to ace your Software Engineer interviews.

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