Efficient and competent resource management should be regarded as the cornerstone of long-term and steady growth. But what can happen when businesses fail to manage their main resource — people? For instance, in the game industry, it is quite common for various professionals like game developers, artists, game designers, and tech support representatives to work overtime to meet very tight deadlines. As a result, such crunch can lead to grueling working hours, hectic schedules and constant emotional strains.
Despite being a successful and profitable game developer, Epic Games provides an illustrative example of a company that fails to manage financial, information technology, and human resources and creates an atmosphere of sheer frustration and despair.
Let’s take a closer look and find out how companies in the game industry can easily avoid such mismanagement with the help of outsourcing.
Epic Games and culture of crunch
Epic Games made a huge splash in the game industry when it launched Fortnite Battle Royale in September 2017. The game quickly became a new cultural phenomenon and it still remains the most popular and highest-grossing video game in the world.
Epic has been reaping millions of dollars per day, but the workflow the company employees have been facing is just enormous. The game developer adds new content every week whether it’s a new skin, weapon, or environment items. Everything must be delivered in time. Otherwise, you might get the sack for not meeting tight schedule. The development cycle, regular updates and fixing endless bugs have had no end and no beginning.
The company’s former and current employees and contractors report that their working hours amounted from 70 up to 100 hours a week. In order not to miss a deadline, they had to work on weekends and their working day usually finished at 3 or 4 in the morning. Although every person at the company has a right to take time off as often as he or she needs, with a large amount of work they have, it’s almost impossible to do so.
If you refuse to work overtime or voice your objections and complaints, be sure that you will be dismissed or your contract will not be renewed.
Many IT professionals have spoken anonymously about the situation at the company for fear of retribution from Epic. Thus, these people are not only working under pressure, but they are also experiencing serious concerns about their career and future.
Unfortunately, the situation at Epic Games looks more like modern slavery, where everyone is trying just to survive, than a company where professionals strive to achieve great results in their projects and get satisfaction from what they are doing.
Epic Games Mistakes and Lessons Learned
Improper resource management has led to high job dissatisfaction and permanent crunch in Epic Games. Fortnite Battle Royale notched up an immediate success but Epic didn’t know how to properly keep up with it.
As a result, the company has faced a lot of problems despite being a leader in the game development world. Here are just a few examples of what poor management of resources can cause:
– Toxic and dangerous work environment
Many Epic’ employees say they had sleep deprivation, health issues, physical and mental exhaustion. Long working hours for extended periods of time have a negative impact on well-being and life in general. For example, a lot of people have become grumpy and resentful even at home and have no desire to go out somewhere to relax.
A few lucky ones, who managed to take time off, felt guilty because their work was delegated to their coworkers. Thus, being consumed with guilt doesn’t help to maintain your well-being very much.
– Chaotic on-boarding and inconsistent training of new members
Since the launch of Fortnite Battle Royale, Epic has tripled the number of full-time employees. As work piled up, the company tried to hire many specialists to keep up with the workload. Most of the time the newcomers didn’t get any proper on-boarding. One QA employee remembers that sometimes there were so many new people that four employees had to sit at the side of a table. Needless to say, they didn’t have enough training to get to work. Still, such hiring measures have not prevented employees from overworking, but it definitely has taken its toll on Epic Games’ budget, time and quality of performance.
– Staff turnover
Even though Epic Games offers its employees the highest wages than they could ever find elsewhere, the work environment is unbearable. In truth, some didn’t mind crunching for several months to get a large bonus. However, high pressure and overload forced them to leave the company.
Staff turnover puts the company at risk of hiring unreliable specialists that might resign once they get enough bonuses and remuneration.
But is there any way Epic Games could improve the situation with mismanagement? The answer is positive.
The company might have avoided these issues if they had chosen the right outsourcing partner who provides efficient outsourcing services that could take resource management under control.
How outsourcing can save companies from poor resource management
Outsourcing can be a real lifeline for a lot of businesses, especially in highly competitive markets, like the game industry. It can easily alleviate many issues and remediate any stressful and critical situations.
Here are the main benefits of outsourcing:
1. Maintain high job satisfaction rate.
Nowadays people are trying to maintain a work-life balance. No one wants to crunch non-stop and have no time off. But people still want to take on challenging projects and tasks.
Companies should strive to create such an atmosphere where the best IT professionals would love to work. In such a way, you will attract a lot of qualified experts that won’t give up a project halfway. Outsource your business processes to get your work done in time and create a perfect working environment for your employees.
2. Run your business round the clock with no crunch.
Instead of having your game designers, artists and game developers snowed under all the time, making them work late into the night and giving them no time off, outsourcing sound as the best choice.
Different time zones and shifts can be highly beneficial:
- you can conduct your business 24/7 with no crunch and no night shifts
- you are not restricted to the 9-to-5 working schedule
- distribute tasks evenly and maintain steady progress of your projects when employees take time off.
These all features can ensure that you operate your business processes without a hitch.
3. Reduce costs without any trouble.
There is no need for you to spend big money on recruiting in-house artists and game developers. Most of the time, outsourcing service providers have a ready pool of specialists to choose from. If there’s a need to add one or several people to a project, it can be done within a short period of time. Thus, you will bring down costs on training, recruiting and on-boarding and save valuable time.
4. Appropriate expertise in the game industry.
As a rule, companies look for partners that have hands-on experience, comprehensive knowledge, and expertise in the relevant field. The most reliable partners, in this case, are the ones which have been on the market for several years. Consequently, tasks can be delivered on time and with top quality.
When it comes to resource management, outsourcing is a wise choice. Epic Games is an evident example of mismanagement. With the help of outsourcing services, Epic and other game development studios can cut costs, maintain high satisfaction job rate, get rid of non-stop crunch.
The key to success lies in the right partner, who can provide outstanding outsourcing services for your business.