BUGS – A new network to help you find the best UK graduate developers

By January 14, 2014 Press Releases

TIGA’s own research has demonstrated the skills shortages UK developers have faced for some time now – 39% of UK game businesses “found it fairly or very difficult to fill vacancies in their organisation’s workforce during 2009”. Programming vacancies in particular were amongst the hardest to fill, and finding games development and programming graduates of a sufficient standard to meet the demands of the UK games industry hasn’t become any easier since then.

However, with your help, we can do something about it.

TIGA is a member of BUGS, the Business & University Games Syndicate that’s seeking to address the skills gap. We want you to sign up to BUGS, which is free to join, and be a part of it too.


What is BUGS? 

  • BUGS is a live network connecting UK video game businesses directly with the best UK video game students, making it easier for you to find local talent at the standard you need.
  • Think LinkedIn for the best game development students in the UK, with the crucial difference that, on the BUGS website, every graduate also has a portfolio of complete games, allowing you to see what they’ve actually made, and what their specific role on the development team was. 
  • For students and their games to be featured on the BUGS platform, a team, headed by Jon Hare, co-founder of Sensible Software and a leading UK games industry figure, must approve and sign off each game as being of a professional standard with regard to robustness and completeness.
  • This means BUGS students learn what it’s like to make games in teams of programmers, artists and designers to the exacting standards of real-world business whilst they are studying. This is something that is often overlooked in many non-BUGS games courses across the UK and means that a BUGS graduate is much   more likely to be ready to hit the ground running and instantly contribute to your business.


Why should TIGA members & UK developers sign up? 

  • You can browse the very best of national and local graduate developer talent, for free.
  • You can review their actual finished game projects, guaranteed to be of a high standard
  • You can connect directly with the individual graduates after first reviewing their games, online portfolios and CVs and seeing what their precise role in each project was.
  • 10 top Universities from all over the UK have signed up already from cities as widespread as London, Cambridge, Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and Portsmouth. These universities have established a database of shared learning materials which are available to all BUGS students as well as a shared network of facilities and guest speakers available to all BUGS member universities.
  • 12 leading UK games companies are signed up to BUGS already, including Jagex, Creative Assembly, Codemasters and Eutechnyx
  • TIGA and BAFTA are official supporters of BUGS.
  • Any time you’re looking to hire, you can add a graduate level vacancy to the BUGS website or contact the students whose games or CVs you like the look of, directly. It is as easy as that.


Jon Hare, CEO of Tower Studios, said:

“Nowadays it’s not easy to make successful top quality games and with UK developers competing in a tough global market, they just can’t afford to hire graduates who aren’t close enough to a professional standard to add value from day one. That’s why BUGS is there to help British developers find the talent they want, at the standard they need, to help grow their businesses and re-establish the UK as one of the top countries in the world for games development. 

“Only with BUGS can you browse a range of completed games, personally approved by myself as being of the requisite standard. And only with BUGS can you see exactly what role each team member had, as well as their CV and further academic and professional achievements.” 


Dr Richard Wilson, CEO, TIGA, added: “TIGA supports the BUGS project and we expect many of our members will too. This is a project that has been conceived and built to make the UK games industry stronger and more competitive, by raising the standard of UK video game graduates, and then making them easier to find and assess.

“This programme could go a long way to enhancing the skills of more UK graduates and so help them secure jobs with UK games businesses.”

Professor Carsten Maple, co-founder of BUGS and Professor at the University of Bedfordshire, added: “BUGS brings together universities and industry to ensure that graduates are in the best position to really add value and impact to the companies they join.

“By ensuring that curricula involve complete game development, graduates will be better placed to contribute to companies not only through knowledge of technology but also the business context. This should be a real bonus for businesses looking to acquire talent to enhance their team.”  


To sign your company up to BUGS now for free simply reply to Jon Hare and the BUGS team at jops@tower-studios.co.uk




About TIGA

TIGA is the trade association representing the video game industry. We help developers and digital publishers build successful studios, network with the right people, save money and access professional business advice.

We also have outsourcing companies, technology businesses and universities amongst our membership.

Since 2010, TIGA has won 16 business awards.  

TIGA focuses on three sets of activities:  

·       Political representation

·       Media representation

·       Business services  

This enhances the competitiveness of our members by providing benefits that make a material difference to their businesses, including a reduction in costs and improved commercial opportunities.

It also means our members’ voices are heard in the corridors of power and positively represented in national, broadcast and UK video game trade media.

Get in touch:  

Tel: 0845 468 2330

Email: info@tiga.org  

Web: www.tiga.org 

Twitter: @TIGAMovement

Facebook: www.facebook.com/TIGAMovement 

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/company/tiga   


For further information, you can also contact:  

Dr Richard Wilson, TIGA CEO on: 07875 939 643, or email: richard.wilson@tiga.org

Drew Field, TIGA Communications Director on: 07720 643 344, or email: drew.field@tiga.org




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