Free Radical paying its staff overtime

UK independent looking to break the traditional development salary cycle
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Free Radical Design is aiming to challenge the way other independent studios do business by improving its staff's payment system - and start paying them overtime, Develop can reveal.

The move comes as a bid to avoid the pitfalls other developers fall into when it comes to crunch and overworking staff with no recompense.

"Traditionally, people are asked to do a variable/unpredictable amount of work in a fixed amount of time. This inevitably results in people crunching – particularly at the end of a project. Pay is usually fixed, with the vague promise of some sort of bonus at the end of it all," explained Steve Ellis, co-founder of the studio (pictured).

"But the days of bonuses that pay off your mortgage are long gone. So we've decided to start paying people for the work that they do - even when that work is outside their normal hours."

Ellis explained that "earnings are more directly connected to the effort that they put in" and that the move comes off FRD's aims to not only improve working practices at the studio, but across the whole industry.

He added: "The point is that it's the way that the whole games industry needs to go - and probably will do sooner or later. We just chose sooner."



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