We’ve been in this industry for a long time, and we like to think that we know it like the back of our hand. That’s why we’re able to impart some of the wisdom that we’ve gathered over the years to help you!
Where you're an artist, producer, programmer or something else, contracting can be a fantastic work alternative for many.
Of course, there are pros and cons to taking up contract work. While it doesn't always come with the safety net of steady pay and hours, it does offers you a large amount of flexibility and variety which you may not get otherwise. So what are some of the perks?
Work on a variety of platforms projects and genres
The great thing about contracting is that you can dabble in a mixture of different projects, platforms and genres depending on how broad your skillset is. You may be desperate to work on a VR project or a mobile game. Contracting gives you that option to continuously develop your skills and challenge yourself to try something new.
Improved work/life balance
While a lot of students offer flexible hours and generous holidays to accommodate a healthy work-life balance, long hours, commutes and crunch-time can often get in the way. If you're a contractor, you get the option to choose how much time you take off in-between contracts, which could significantly improve your work/life balance.
Time for a career break
You may be fed up in your current job, and while you may not want to retire from the industry entirely, maybe it's time to enjoy the independence of contracting.
Build your network
It goes without saying that contracting helps you build connections with people from all over the industry. If you make an impression, many will be happy to provide you with a good reference for your work. Keep hold of these connections, as you never know when more opportunities will arise at their studio.
Earn the same!
One of the common myths about contract work is that it's low paid, however this certainly isn't the case. Many contracts pay well and often there's a chance of them being extended if the workload piles on and you're a good fit for the studio. Therefore contracting can still pay the bills as much as a permanent studio position, so you shouldn't let factors like salary put you off.
It's not for everyone
Of course, contracting isn't for everyone and it may not be for you. If you're looking to work your way up to a senior position in a company, a permanent studio position improves your chances of career progression.
Moving from studio to studio may be great for meeting more people in the industry, however it can be trickier to build stronger, more meaningful relationships like you would in a studio environment.
If you'd like any advice about contracting or to find out what vacancies we've got...
Feeling unhappy or unsatisfied with your job straight away raises a red flag about whether or not it's time to change jobs. But of course this isn't an overnight decision to be made lightly.There could be many reasons why you may be wanting to leave a job, and if this number is high, then this may be a good indicator that you're ready to move on to something else.
You may feel unsatisfied or unchallenged
If this is the case, then it's worth talking to your boss to see if they can give you more responsibility or more challenging projects to work on. If this isn't possible, then it may be time to move on. It may just be that there are other areas of work that you want to work on which aren't available at your current company, e.g. you may be keen to get involved with Virtual Reality.
You may be unhappy with the pay
Salary can be an important factor to any career. If you're putting in a lot of hours and don't feel like you're earning as much as you deserve, this is another issue to raise with your boss. It's worth comparing salaries for your job role and making a case to your boss, including your key achievements, to demonstrate why you deserve a pay rise.
Maybe the commute is too much
For the right job, a commute may not be too much of an issue, but a long commute can take its toll on your work-life balance. It may be that you wish to be closer to home to spend more time with family, or you may be looking to move further away for personal reasons. If there are more appealing jobs which are closer to home, this is a good reason to move on.
You may not see a future there
Perhaps there's no option for career advancement at your current company and you want to aim higher. If you're ambitious and you see yourself thriving in a better position, then there's absolutely no shame in changing jobs to get there.
Maybe some changes have been made at your company
A slight change in job role and responsibilities or a change of company culture can affect how much you enjoy your job. It may be that you don't agree with the management style of a new boss. Whatever the reason, if your workplace or your role no longer matches what you signed up for, it may be time to look for opportunities elsewhere.
So is it time to change jobs?
If you're already beginning to think about some of the above, it may be worth raising the issue/s with your boss. It's always worth seeing how they can support you before you start making any drastic decisions. There's a lot to consider when changing jobs, and you need to make sure that it's the right decision for you.
If you’re reading this, you’re presumably already interested in a career in the games industry. Maybe you’re on the fence and need some help to make up your mind. To help you out we’ve come up with five benefits you’ll get when working in the games industry that you might not find anywhere else!
Gaming is a booming industry
Gaming is a juggernaut of an industry which is experiencing rapid growth with no signs of slowing down. In 2016, the gaming industry made over $91 billion globally. To put that into context, the global film industry made just $38 billion last year.
With eSports and VR entering the market growth is predicted to continue - you’ll be able to rest easy knowing your industry is a prosperous one.
Working in your passion
Most people will be able to tell you what their dream job is. By working in the games industry, you’ll get to work on your passion and hobby while receiving a good standard of pay for your work.
People thrive and do their best work when they are passionate about their industry; that boost to your enthusiasm and quality of work could be just what you need to climb the career ladder successfully.
You’ll receive benefits such as being able to play games before anyone else and influence key decisions on those games. There’s nothing more satisfying than looking at a finished product and saying “I did that.”
Casual working environment
The vast majority of games studios employ a casual working environment where things are generally more relaxed. This can save you untold amounts of stress and improve your social life. Prolonged stress, while just generally being unpleasant, can also have negative effects on your health – so it’s best to avoid where possible.
Work alongside like-minded people
You can bet that everyone you’ll be working with in the games industry shares similar hobbies and grew up playing the same games as yourself. You’ll have common interests with your team from the first day you step into your new job, and it’s a great way to introduce yourself.
Game design is very team orientated and you’ll get lots of opportunities to collaborate with other passionate gamers, each with their own unique tastes in games who could expose you to something you didn’t even know existed!
Opportunities to suit you
The games industry is made up of all sorts of studios of varying sizes. From small indie developers with just a handful of members, to AAA studios with big budgets, there’s room for you to decide what environment would suit you best.
There’s also the possibility of contracting your services out to studios. There are pros and cons of contract work which would need to be considered carefully before taking it up, but it can provide flexible work hours which some may find attractive based on their circumstances.