Company Offers Beer, $10,000 Cash and More for New Employees

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job interview This has to be one of the most unusual and generous recruiting ploys we've ever seen. Hipster, a marketing/social networking start-up in San Francisco, is not only offering $10,000 to new employees or those who refer them, but all the accoutrement you'll need to fit right in. This includes a striped bow-tie, worn brown boots and, we kid you not, a year's supply of Pabst Blue Ribbon (PBR), which is apparently the drink of choice for true hipsters these days.

Mustaches and bicycles seem to be "in" now, as well, since the incentive package also includes 'stache grooming services and a florescent, fixed gear bike. But wait -- there's more! They'll also throw in a pair of skinny jeans, and some big, black, horn-rimmed Buddy Holly glasses.

Of course, they also have more traditional employee incentives. According to their website, "We're offering a competitive salary with fantastic stock options, as well as great medical and dental benefits. We're in a prime location in the heart of SOMA, right across from the Caltrain station."

So what is Hipster and what exactly does it do? Unless you're into this type of thing, it's a little difficult to figure out. "Hipster is building a fun way to uncover the vast amount of information about real-world locations that isn't yet available online," says the website. "Based in SOMA, San Francisco, and founded in 2010 by Doug Ludlow, Ethan Czahor and Steffen Hoffman, Hipster is tackling a really large problem in a really large market in a really unique way."

Jenna Wortham, a blogger for The New York Times describes their business this way: Hipster "lets people post queries and answers to others in their geographic area using the Web and a mobile phone."

If that sounds a little squishy, know they're backed by some major powerhouses, including Google Ventures, Lightbank, Kapor Capitol, Ludlow Ventures and many more. That's how they're funding all the new employee perks.

What kinds of positions are they trying to fill? "We want entrepreneurs, not employees" their website states. "We're looking for individuals who are self-motivated and eager to learn; the type that would rather start their own business than work for someone else. This is an opportunity to be autonomous, important, and have substantial decision-making power."

Their ideal employees, however, are highly skilled and specialized. To be specific, they're seeking:


Mobile Engineers
  • with extensive experience creating fun and useful mobile applications for the iPhone, Android and Blackberry platforms
  • with expertise in Objective C, Java and appropriate mobile APIs/SDKs
  • a BS, MS or PhD in Computer Science, or equivalent work experience

Ruby Engineers
  • with extensive experience building awesome Ruby-based web applications
  • with expertise in several areas of a typical Rails stack, from the data layer (MongoDB, PostgreSQL) all way on up (Varnish, Memcached, and more)
  • a BS, MS or PhD in Computer Science, or equivalent work experience

And you don't even have to submit a resume to apply to Hipster! All you have to do is fill out a very short online application, provide a link to your LinkedIn profile, and write a few sentences about why you would be the right candidate. It's as simple as that.

Hey, if you know any good Ruby or mobile-app engineers, you could go ahead and submit their names yourself. If they're hired on your recommendation, the cash and the hipster kit are yours. What have you got to lose, besides that seriously unhip reputation?

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