JOBS IN GAMES: OPM – "Companies are hiring more staff again"

As we enter the final week of our Jobs In Games special, in association with OPM, we find out more about the leading recruitment agencies.

OPM owner Kim Parker Adcock and PR and marketing manager Nathan Adcock tell us how the jobs market has changed over the past few years and why the number of opportunities available in the games industry is growing.

What is OPM?
OPM is a specialist recruitment consultancy for games, interactive entertainment and associated industries.

What is the most important thing people should know about your company
The variety of jobs and locations that we place people in. We work all over the world – 27 countries to date, for all areas of the industry (our five categories have a multitude of skills sectors within them) and for all kinds of jobs – temporary, contract or permanent.

How has the games jobs market changed in the last five years and what have you done to adapt to that?
Social media has changed the way we work completely. You can find and contact people much easier these days. Obviously this isn’t limited to just us so a lot of companies have tried to find people themselves. We’ve had to adapt just to keep up with the times. There are so many ways to find people and we need to make sure we find them first and we’re the best at each of them.

What have been the biggest changes to the jobs market in 2012 so far?
It’s just great to see companies hiring more staff again. The last two years have been bleak with the well-documented economy problems the world has been having. We’ve noticed companies are hiring a lot more this year. This also means we’re getting a lot less unemployed people looking for work. All in all, things are looking very positive.

What growth areas are there in the games jobs market and how do you see these developing over the next few years?
Cross-platform development is becoming bigger and bigger. Obviously it makes sense for companies to get their games on as many platforms as they can. Because of this, a lot of studios are asking for people with cross-platform development experience. On the technical side of things there is a huge demand for anyone with Unity or HTML5 experience. We’ve noticed for a while that online marketing is pretty much a necessity for every company, there appear to be more vacancies than sales people in this area.

Why should employers use recruitment specialists when searching for new talent, rather than an in-house team?
A lot of the time it’s not really a case of using one or another. Most in-house teams know the advantages of using agencies. In fact most in-house teams came from a recruitment background. Not using agencies limits the search to find the best people. A smaller company that can’t afford an in-house team will benefit using a recruitment agency as you get the right person for the job quickly and efficiently. There is a cost attached of course, but what does it cost to not have the right person in your vacancy? Or worse, the wrong person?

Why should applicants consider agencies’ services when searching for a new job?
There are a few reasons. A lot of people just like having their job search carried out by someone who knows what they’re doing and knows what is out there. Unfortunately a lot of people don’t really know how best to present themselves when applying for a job. Any applicant that goes through an agency has a specialist recruitment consultant that sells them to the hiring manager. The application jumps the pile of CVs and goes straight to the person that needs to see it. Agencies will always chase to get feedback as soon as they can get it, so if it was unsuccessful we know what to do next time. Unfortunately feedback isn’t something you usually get when applying direct, which can be quite demoralising. They’ll also negotiate your salary package which some applicants find challenging. Mostly though we find people on our books want professional representation. They’ll only get one chance to make an impression, and with so many applicants’ CV’s arriving with hiring managers they need to know they stand out from the crowd or they may just get overlooked.

What is the most important thing to remember when applying for a job or filling a vacancy at the moment?
If you’re applying for a job it’s very important to remember that you only get one chance to make a first impression. Your CV has to be perfect. Make sure your experience and knowledge make easy reading as this is the first thing a hiring manager is looking for. Although we recommend standing out and showing some personality, anything quirky you want to share about yourself should probably go at the bottom.

When filling a vacancy the most important thing to remember is time. Time is everything in recruitment. You want to be quick and efficient. If you’ve been looking for someone for six months with no luck, that person probably doesn’t exist. Then when you think about the man hours that have gone into that, it’s been a very expensive search with no results.

Anything you’d like to add?
It’s been a hard time in this industry recently, with more companies disappearing and more talented people unemployed than ever before. It looks like we’re finally coming out of the other end and some exciting business models, studios and projects are emerging. We’re looking forward to see what this great industry can produce and hope everyone can find something they can be proud to work on.

About MCV Staff

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