Firm praised for bonus and sabbatical policy; Digital Extremes also joins list

BioWare listed as â??top 100â?? Canadian firm

EA-owned developer BioWare has been named as one of the top 100 employers in Canada.

The studio, based in Alberta, was cited in Mediacorp Canada’s catalogue of the 100 best places to work. Mediacorp’s annual list profiles companies which “lead the nation in offering exceptional working conditions and benefits.”

BioWare was praised for its treatment of its own staff, offering employee referral bonuses and a share purchase plan, as well as helping employees stay healthy with free breakfasts and an onsite gym and swimming pool.

The company rewards its long-term employees with a seven-week paid sabbatical, said to help senior staff “stay refreshed and creative in an industry known for long hours and demanding schedules.”

Mediacorp’s list – unearthed in a GamePolitics report – states that employers are “compared to other organisations in their field to determine which offers the most progressive and forward-thinking programs.”

Other high-profile studios such as EA Canada and Eidos Montreal did not make the list, though companies need to apply to be eligible for evaluation.

The only other game development studio that made the list was the Ontario-based group Digital Extremes, which was praised for its tuition fee subsidies and financially encouraging professional accreditations with bonus pay. Mediacorp says the studio added over 30 new positions last year, bringing its staff count up to 100.

Mediacorp will soon be assigning an employer grade to both BioWare and Digital Extremes.

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