Desperately Seeking Engineers, Zoosk Woos Applicants With Dates

Upstart online-dating site Zoosk is desperately seeking software engineers and is taking a novel approach in the hope of getting its hooks into some talent -- by promising a date with one of the two actors featured in the company's TV ads.

Get hired by the San Francisco-based company by Sept. 30, and "as a bonus," Zoosk says, newly hired engineers will have a chance to go out on a date with their choice of the lead actress from its "Office Romance" TV commercial (below), or the lead actor from the company's "Athlete" ad.

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If you're not an engineer, but know one, there's a chance to win $10,000 if Zoosk hires the person you recommend.

According to an online job posting explaining the promotion, Zoosk is looking for "experienced front-end and back-end software engineers passionate about developing web applications." Among the required qualifications are a bachelor's in computer science and four or more years building web applications used by the public.

As with any promotion, there is the fine print, which notes that the person selected to go on the date also agrees to allow Zoosk to use his or her name, image and likeness for promotional and advertising purposes "without additional compensation."

The date is scheduled for November in the Los Angeles area, although those plans could change, Zoosk notes. Also, the person chosen to go on the date must remain an employee in "good performance standing" at the time of the date, or otherwise forfeit the award.

The idea may go down as one of the worst recruiting tools ever imagined -- unless of course you're at least as desperate for a date as you are a job.

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David Schepp

Staff Writer

David Schepp has spent more than a dozen years covering business news for the electronic and print media, including Dow Jones Newswires, BBC News, Gannett Co., and most recently at AOL's DailyFinance. Nearly 10 years ago, he started writing a weekly People@Work column, looking in depth at issues facing workers in today's workplace. The syndicated column appeared in newspapers and websites nationwide before it made its debut on DailyFinance in 2010. Schepp now continues that tradition at Aol Jobs, covering the jobs beat and providing readers insight and analysis into the nation's challenging employment scene.

Schepp holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Metropolitan State College of Denver.

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