Saturday, 25 May 2024

A Shift in Talent: Insights on Employee Movement at Ubisoft

A recent report sheds light on a significant exodus occurring within Ubisoft, a renowned video game development and publishing company. Colleagues within the company have coined this movement “the great exodus” and “the cut artery,” expressing astonishment at the scale of departures they have witnessed. While the departure of developers after completing a game is not uncommon, the current exodus at Ubisoft appears to be unprecedented.

The reasons behind this employee migration encompass various factors. Dissatisfaction with low pay, limited competitive opportunities, frustration with the company’s recent creative direction, and the ripple effect of recent scandals are among the key drivers mentioned by current and former Ubisoft employees interviewed by Axios, the source of this report.

Axios highlights that, of the top 25 contributors to Ubisoft’s flagship 2021 game, Far Cry 6, at least five have already departed. Similarly, on the Assassin’s Creed Valhalla team, 12 of the top 50 developers have left. While such departures are not unexpected after project completion, the multiple accounts from Ubisoft insiders suggest a larger trend of employee exodus.

LinkedIn data reveals that Ubisoft Montreal and Toronto studios have seen a combined loss of at least 60 employees in the past six months. The impact of this talent drain is evident in delayed and slower projects, as testified by two Ubisoft developers interviewed by Axios.

Recruiters have taken note of the situation, viewing Ubisoft employees as attractive prospects due to the scandals surrounding the company. Disappointment with directives from Ubisoft’s Paris headquarters has also pushed some employees towards seeking new opportunities. As one developer expressed, “there’s something about management and creative scraping by with the bare minimum that really turned [them] away.”

In response to these concerns, Ubisoft management assured Axios that they are actively addressing the exodus. Although attrition rates are slightly higher than usual, Ubisoft has successfully hired 2,600 new employees since April. Anika Grant, Ubisoft’s head of people ops, emphasized that attrition remains within industry norms and that the company has implemented pay raises across its Canadian offices to improve retention.

This development follows a challenging summer for Ubisoft, marked by discontent among employees regarding the company’s handling of internal scandals. Reports in July highlighted dissatisfaction with leadership’s response to the “Me Too” movement, while a previous study in October 2020 revealed instances of workplace misconduct experienced or witnessed by 25% of Ubisoft employees.

In other news, Ubisoft recently announced the development of a Splinter Cell remake, demonstrating their commitment to delivering exciting projects amidst these internal challenges.

For more comprehensive details on the employee exodus at Ubisoft, refer to Axios’ complete report.

Source: Axios