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jollyjeffers

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So I got my copy of develop magazine yesterday - always like reading through it. Loads of useful games industry stuff - and you can download it as a free PDF!

Given that I need a job for next summer, I've been looking through the last few issues to get some ideas... conveniently in this latest issue their main feature is on the UK's state of recruitment and a distinct lack of skilled candidates.

So I followed up on a few links from the article - can't hurt to try my luck I suppose. I'm not expecting much as I don't have enough experience to fit the sorts of jobs they seem to be talking about.

Anyway, I send off an application at ~7pm yesterday. Get a phone call this morning (less than 15hrs later) that pretty much concluded with "so why did you bother to apply then?". Made for an amusing start to the day [lol]

It did get me wondering whether Evil Steve ended up getting a job in the industry. Been almost a month since he updated his journal, and not many forum posts lately...

So, point of this post... if you're in the UK and want to work in the games industry they're apparently desperate for anyone. Maybe you can even sell your idea of that MMORPG...
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Maybe they'd even hire me... OK, so not that desperate.

Hehe, can't hurt to try can it...? I apply that logic to most of the recruitment process(es) and it does me fine [smile]

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What sort of requirements do they tend to look for?

For the games industry it seems to be much more about experience and technical ability (knowledge of hardware, API's, languages...)

Great little Catch-22 where you can't get experience without a job and can't get a job without experience.

Other "normal" jobs that I'm applying for tend to put more weight on the communication/teamplaying skills. I'm sure that's important for games, but it's not emphasised so much.

Jack

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- employment agencies make 20-30% of a placed candidates first year salary as a commission. Some are desperate to place candidates (read commission), some will mislead candidates, some will mislead employers. Employment agency adverts (in any industry) can paint a misleading picture of the job market in that industry.

- there are definitely some staff shortages in the games industry; but mostly they tend to be either for very specific roles, or at less popular geographic locations and/or less popular companies (high staff turnover due to big internal problems...).

- in other areas of the country there's a job shortage - it really does vary a hell of a lot based on location at the moment. If you're not in/near a current hotspot, expect to relocate; be prepared to relocate again if/when that area crashes...

- most medium to large (>100 people) games studios in the UK *do* take on people without prior industry experience (assuming good degree and a knowledge/enthusiasm from hobby involvement).

- the reason for jobs asking for people with *specific* prior experience is simply because the vacancy is usually to fill a gap on an existing team where they want someone to slot in and become productive from day one.

- unfortunately some games studios do hire junior staff in the deliberate knowledge that they're cheaper than experienced staff and much more easily "expendable".

- a very large number of games jobs are filled through word of mouth long before you see any adverts.

- if you want to be in the industry that much, and you're good at what you do, it's not that difficult to get into. But caveat emptor, while the high points are really high (relaxed industry, doing something you enjoy, working on/with "cool" stuff, etc), the downpoints are equally low (instability, serious unpaid overtime, management practices/incompetencies that make you despair).

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