TIGA and Aon Hewitt survey shows UK games software developers’ salaries rise by 3 per cent in 2011

By April 3, 2012 Press Releases

TIGA, the trade association representing the UK games industry, and  Aon
Hewitt, the global human resources business of Aon Corporation (NYSE:AON),  have today released key findings from their 2011/2012 Games
Software Developers’ Salary Survey. 

survey, now in its third year, is the only comprehensive salary survey carried
out annually for the UK games software development industry, with input from
developers (both independent and publisher owned) covering over 11 per cent of
the software developer UK workforce. The survey offers insight into current pay
levels from graduates up to senior managers, typical organisational structures
and evolving workforce demographics. These are viewed as key issues in an
increasingly fast-moving and talent-driven industry. 

Steve Munday, senior reward consultant
at Aon Hewitt said: 

“This survey has again provided a comprehensive picture of the
games software industry. It is clearly apparent that successful organisations
within this sector need a flexible and adaptable workforce that can develop,
learn and share new skills -but which can also be expanded and reduced in size
relatively simply. Traditional business and distribution models are being
adapted to meet the demand for new technologies and to remain profitable as
fast-paced change continues. 

“For employees reported in the survey and who stayed in the same
job between 2010 and 2011, median pay increases remain unchanged from the
previous year, at 3.0 per cent. 
This is on a par with UK general industry (3.2 per cent as reported in
Aon Hewitt's UK Salary Increases Survey (SIS)). One in fiveemployees had a pay freeze in 2011,
compared to one in eight in 2010.” 

Steve Munday continued: 

“The Aon Hewitt and TIGA survey shows
that this sector remains predominantly male (91 per cent). The fact that there
are fewer female employees may still be attributed, at least in part, to fewer
women studying relevant subjects at university, however over the last three years
the survey has shown a steady increase in the proportion of women, moving from
6.6 per cent in 2009 to 9.2 per cent in 2011. Even so, despite the low
proportion of female employees, survey results again suggest that the median base
salary of male and female employees at equivalent survey levels, are only very
marginally different (less than 0.5 per cent), while target bonuses as a
percentage of salary show no difference between genders.” 

Dr Richard Wilson, chief executive
officer of TIGA said:  

“TIGA’s mission is to
fight for the interest of games developers and digital publishers and our
vision is to make the UK the best place in the world to do games business. The
TIGA and Aon Hewitt salary survey provides TIGA members with high quality
information to enable them to make informed decisions on remuneration and other

“This year’s data reveals three
key findings. At 3.0 per cent, median pay increases in the sector remain the
same as the previous two surveys, while, staff turnover at 14.2 per cent is
relatively high compared to the national average. The increase to 9.2 per cent in
the female proportion of the workforce also reflects a gradual improvement and TIGA
will soon publish best practice information about recruiting and retaining the
best possible talent.” 

For the survey, salary information is provided for the key functions of
art, audio, design, production, quality assurance and technical
development/programming. There are 11 survey levels from ‘entry level’ to
'graduates' and all the way up to ‘function heads’. These levels are
underpinned by Aon Hewitt’s proprietary job evaluation methodology JobLinkTM*. The survey also provides detailed information on bonuses,
cash allowances, employee benefits, annual pay increases and employee turnover,
as well as organisational structure and employee demographics including gender,
age and length of service. 

Main findings from the survey include

  • Base salary increases of 3 per cent over the last 12 months remain
    the same as those in 2010 and on a par with UK general industry (3.2 per
    cent) in the same period (according to Aon Hewitt's SIS).
  • Median graduate base salaries are up 4.0 per cent on 2010, double
    the rate between 2009 and 2010.
  • Across most participating organisations, 19.8 per cent of the
    survey population had a pay freeze in 2011 compared to 13 per cent in 2010
    and 33 per cent in 2009.
  • Voluntary employee turnover in 2011 was 14.2 per cent, while
    attrition was around 6 per cent.
  • The average ratio of employees defined as 'contractors' to full
    time employees has increased to 1:4 in 2011 from 1:5 in 2010 and 1:8 in
  • 9.2% of the survey workforce is female, up from 7.1 per cent in
    2010 and 6.6 per cent in 2009.
  • Over 50 per cent of the survey population has less than five years
    of service.  

*The survey levels developed from Aon Hewitt's job evaluation
system provide organisations with an invaluable benchmarking tool when assessing
their employees' roles.  –
ends – 

Notes to editors:

To purchase a copy of the Aon Hewitt
Games Software Developers’ Salary Survey and/or participate in the next
TIGA/Aon Hewitt survey please contact steve.munday@aonhewitt.com.


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