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  • Seven years of the Women in Games WIGJ not for profit organisation.

    WIGJ_logo_primary_red_580x150Women in Games WIGJ was formed in 2009, initially as an information only website called Women in Games Jobs. It objective was to help recruit more women into the games industry by promoting female role models and giving encouragement and information to those women seeking to work in the games industry.

    At the time only 1 in 15 of the games industry workforce or 6% were thought to be female and I had heard too many stories from people I had interviewed in my role as a recruiter not to realise that a problem of ‘gender imbalance’ existed. I was helped by Antonia Cullum, a former Producer at Channel 4 and Lionhead, working at Interactive Selection who was able to translate some masculine ideas on what might be useful to women into something that was genuinely helpful.

    In 2010 WIGJ collaborated in a half day conference in Brighton during Develop where Sheri Graner-Ray told of here experiences of women in games in the USA. At the conference I was able to read out a letter of support from the UK Minister for Equalities, Lynne Featherstone, which was critical of the games sector and so started an active campaign to encourage change.

    In 2011 the opportunity for women to network together in a space away from most men was created with the formation of a professional networking group on LinkedIn. It was soon evident that this was a need for a location where women were able to talk freely about their experiences, good and bad, in the industry. And one of the first requests was for events to be organised for women who were keen to meet others. The first conference organised by WIGJ took place in September at the NH Harrington Hall Hotel near Gloucester Road in London. In March 2012 the first meetup in London took place with 55 women in games supporters signed up and attending.

    Last year WIGJ announces that its core objective is to double the number of women in games working in the UK and Europe by 2025. Jenny Richards-Stewart, CEO, explained: “We want more companies to step forward on issues of diversity and inspire the next generation of talent.”

    Now as a not for profit organisation, WIGJ membership stands at over 5000 globally with 1000 in the UK alone. The group is the largest of its kind in the world, alongside Women In Games International that does great things in North America.

    In the last month WIGJ broke the news that games still employs the fewest women in Creative Media but the sector has seen remarkable growth in recent years at 19% of the workforce, with 2000 employees, compared to 14% or 800 in 2012.

    WIGJ is very pleased to be supporting MCV and NewBay Media’s 2016 Women in Games Awards. There still remains much more to do.

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    Interactive Selection offer the most experienced Non Executive Directors in Games sector.

    A non executive directorship is an appointment to the board of a company on a part time basis. The work of a non executive director (NED) generally involves making buiness introductions and attending board meetings, with the aim of jump starting the company’s success through the provision of experienced, intelligent advice to the company board, the chairman or management. NED’s are rare in the games sector unless the games company has venture capital funding but they are sorely needed. Why pay £25000 a year for a junior programmer when you can pay 1/2 this to have one of the most experienced, former games publisher European MD’s on your team. The very first board meeting may pay back 10 times the cost of the NED board fees. Interactive Selection have sought out and welcomed through personal recommendation 6 of the most talented, most experienced, former MD’s who have ran mega teams for the likes of EA, Microsoft, Sony and THQ with the very best of door opening contacts in all the high places. Please contact David Smith if you are interested in strengthening your team or indeed you are interested in joining Interactive’s great talent pool for NED appointments.

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    Happy Holidays & New Year from the award winning Interactive Selection

    Happy HolidaysHappy Holidays from David Smith, Adrian Garrick, Cassandra Donnelly, Bonnie Pavlo, Raffaella Carissimi and Samantha Moore at the award winning Interactive Selection. There will be some cover on normal working days over Christmas. The market is strong in specific international roles. There are also some great new roles coming through. We look forward to hearing from you in 2016.

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    Games Recruiter David Smith honoured with recruitment body's Honorary Fellowship.

    David Smith with REC Chair Simon Noakes

    Interactive Selection is pleased to announce that its MD, David Smith, has been awarded Honorary Fellowship of the Institute of Recruitment Professionals (IRP) in the UK. The Institute of Recruitment Professionals (IRP) is the representative body for individuals working within the Staffing and Recruitment Industry. The award was presented at the IRP Awards lasts night by REC Chairman, Simon Noakes.

    Established in 2009 in its present form, but tracing its history back for over 80 years,the IRP helps its members maintain and develop their careers, providing a clear differentiator for the professional recruiter. All IRP members abide by a Code of Ethics, and commit to upholding best practice.

    HonFIRP status is the highest accolade of individual members and is only awarded to those members who have demonstrated an outstanding career and outstanding personal contribution to REC, IRP and the recruitment industry. The Honorary Fellowship is awarded annually at the Recruitment & Employment Confederation’s (REC’s) AGM and David bagged 1 of the 2 on offer. All in all, there are about 100000 working in UK recruitment and we understand that under 20 have been given this honour.

    David commented, “I am thrilled with this award. It is another first for the games industry. Recognition by your peers counts for a lot. My work in the recruitment profession, just as in the games industry is ongoing and I look forward to working with the REC and IRP to advance its standing still further.”

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    Interactive Selection wins TIGA award for Women in Games WIGJ

    WIGJ TIGA Awards 2015 web

    Interactive Selection won another TIGA award for Women in Games WIGJ on Thursday 12 November. We were highly commended for the inaugural Diversity Award. Women In Games (WIGJ) works to recruit, retain and support the progression of women in the games industry by positively and actively promoting female role models and giving encouragement and information to those women seeking to work in games. Women in Games was incorporated as a “not for profit” or Community Interest Company under the UK’s Companies Act 2006 in 2011.

    Interactive Selection and WIGJ thank TIGA for creating the Diversity award which will be promoting in future years.

    We also congratulate WIGJ Hall of Fame and now TIGA Award Winner, Debbie Bestwick of Team 17 for publishing Tiger & Squid: Beyond Eyes, a game developed by Sherida Halatoe where you guide a blind girl in search of a missing friend by using her remaining senses to visualize the world around her, for winning the Diversity Award itself. – see http://www.tiger-squid.com/home/4558559479

    A full list of all the awards winners is here.

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    Interactive Selection is shortlisted again - this time for 2 TIGA Awards

    TIGA award finalist 2015

    We are pleased to report that Interactive Selection has been shortlisted for the Best Recruitment Agency award in the TIGA Awards 2015. Interactive Selection has also been nominated for its work in founding the Women in Games WIGJ organisation in a brand new Diversity Award. Interactive MD, David Smith commented, “TIGA have always been an innovator creating awards that are decided on by game developers themselves. Many awards are organised by media organisations to promote themselves as well as the award nominees. We are very pleased to be nominated for the recruitment agency award for all 3 years since the award was created to acknowledge the good work that professional recruiters do to help game developers grow with a background of industry wide skill shortages. We are also delighted that TIGA has created an award to reward companies that take a special interest in furthering diversity, be it in a game environment or a company or, in the case of Women in Games, an industry wide movement.” The Awards Ceremony will take place on Thursday 12th November at LSO St Luke’s a beautifully restored 18th Century church near Old Street, London. You can still book tickets to attend this event here.

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    Book now for the European Women In Games Conference on September 2nd in London, UK

    EWIG logoWomen in Games announces venue and ticket prices plus unveils new branding

    The fifth annual European Women in Games Conference is to take place on Wednesday 2nd September at the University of Westminster. The conference continues to grow in both size and stature and this year’s event is expected to be the biggest yet. As in previous years the day’s conference will comprise a mix of keynote speeches, panel discussions and the European Women in Games Hall of Fame Awards. The line-up of speakers and panellists will reflect the diverse talent that exists in the games industry. This year the focus will be on acquiring the skills and knowledge needed to get an entry-level position and for career progression in the games development industry.

    Full conference schedule http://www.ewigconf.com/schedule/

    Latest list of speakers announced. See http://www.ewigconf.com/speakers/

    Women in Games is committed to ensuring that the conference is as accessible as possible and therefore early bird ticket prices have been set at £50 to open it up to as many delegates as possible. Full price tickets will be £95. In addition the organisers are keen to stress that this is an inclusive event and male delegates are equally very welcome. Tickets now at http://www.ewigconf.com/

    Women in Games has also had a makeover with a new logo (designed by King and at the top of this press release) and dropping Jobs from its title.

    Announcing the conference details, CEO Jenny Richards-Stewart said “This year’s conference programme is shaping up to be our best yet, in terms of content which will help delegates fast track their careers in the games industry. As always, we have tried to keep the ticket prices as low as possible so that it is within the reach of students, entry level delegates and those working for small start-ups and indies. I am looking forward to revealing more details of the conference programme in due course. We will also be announcing some exciting initiatives from Women in Games over the next few weeks.”

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    Interactive Selection to speak at Nordic Game Conference May 20- 22 Malmo

    nordicgame15

    David Smith from Interactive Selection will be chairing a well anticipated panel at the Nordic Game Conference on May 20-22 in Malmo, Sweden. The panel takes place on Thursday 21st at 2.15  and the title of the panel is “Managing your Career in the Nordic Games Industry”.   Joining David on the panel with be Pia Bugge, HR Manager at IO Interactive in Copenhagen, Leanne Loombe, Producer on Need for Speed at Ghost Games in Gothenburg, Jenny Berg Nilsson, Senior Vibe Manager from Ubisoft Massive in Malmo and Ann-Sofie Sydow, Project Manager at The Game Assembly  in Malmo and Board member of Spelplan. The audience addressed is anyone wanting to work or already working in the European games industry who is interested in growing their experience and reaching their potential on an ongoing basis and we hope you can join us.

    More than 90 speakers are in the line-up for Nordic Game 2015 as the complete program schedule for Europe’s most relevant industry conference was revealed on 29 April. Ubisoft Annecy studio manager and Malmö native Rebecka Coutaz will present this year’s opening keynote on Wednesday 20 May, followed by more than 70 sessions over three days at Nordic Game 2015.

    If you would like to meet David in Sweden, he is available to meet from Wednesday through to Friday. Contact details.

     

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    Interactive Selection to speak at Quo Vadis Conference April 21-23 Berlin

    Quo Vadis ConferenceDavid Smith from Interactive Selection will be accompanying Harald Riegler from Sproing to talk about “Managing your Career in the European Games Industry.” Following a set career path becomes more and more difficult as the games segment across related industries and games are made on even more different platforms. How does a student or young game developer choose which job option to take first of all? Should he or she stay with the first employer to offer a job? When does it make sense to move to another company? All employers will tell you that a managed career is important but how do you take a grip so that you can achieve what you want?

    Audience addressed: Anyone wanting to work or already working in the European games industry who is interested in growing their experience and reaching their potential on an ongoing basis.
    Takeaway: David and Harald will give practical advice on managing individual careers based on David having nearly 20 years of speaking to job seekers, advising on securing next roles in the games industry and Harald working over 20 years in game development in Austria.
    We hope to see you in the room Riga on the first floor of Café Moskau on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 14.00 – 15.00 pm.

    If you would like to meet David in Berlin, he is available to meet from Monday through to Thursday. Contact details.

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    Interactive Selection write Best Practice Recruitment Guide for all of games industry.

    We are pleased to remind all hirers that the Best Practice Recruitment and Selection Guide for all of games industry was written by Interactive Selection and published by TIGA, the trade association representing the UK games industry. The TIGA Guide is endorsed by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC). The Guide, Recruitment and Selection: Best Practice Guide for Game Developers, gives practical and informed advice on hiring new staff.

    The Guide also suggests ways of encouraging the best candidates to apply for jobs, looking at examples of modern practices from mentoring to flexible working to career break schemes. Exploring methods of motivation and retention, the Guide is essential reading for developers and digital publishers looking to keep employees motivated and to attract the best talent.

    It was written by David Smith, the managing director of London-based global games recruiter Interactive Selection, who also founded the not-for-profit network Women in Games Jobs. He was assisted by Laura Hare, the head of human resources at Jagex, Geraldine Cross, head of human resources at Blitz Games and Mark Webley, the CEO of Lionhead Studios, all of whom contributed to the Guide.

    Laura Hare, Geraldine Cross and Mark Webley give expert tips on planning recruitment, the interview process, investigating work permits and visas, preparing company information packs, writing job descriptions and advertising for staff. There is a heavy emphasis on equal opportunities law with input from Osborne Clarke, including a comprehensive recruitment and selection checklist, and an in-depth look at using outside agencies.

    TIGA CEO Dr Richard Wilson said:
    “With an increasing number of development studios being formed in the UK, many will be unsure of the recruitment process and how to get the very best people to fill their positions. This guide helps to ensure they avoid any of the recruitment pitfalls, retain and respect the staff they take on and ensure that the interview process is an enjoyable and fruitful one for candidates and interviewer.

    Kevin Green, Chief Executive of the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, said:
    “It is critical that businesses have an effective process to attract and select staff. This guide is both practical and jam packed with sensible advice. We commend it to all those games businesses who want to improve their success at hiring the best people.”

    The Guide is free to TIGA members and clients of Interactive Selection. Please contact Interactive Selection if you would like a copy.

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