A former employee of Goodgame has since reached out to Develop and revealed more about the hiring freeze the studio implemented.
Our source signed a contract in mid-July, was due to begin at the start of September and was only informed their contract was terminated in the middle of August – in the midst of hunting for new accomodation, having already arranged the sale of their previous home and quit their previous job.
The developer also claims they received no financial support from Goodgame, and the only help finding more employment came in the form of a LinkedIn message pointing to vacancies at a firm based in another country.
Develop reached out to Goodgame for comment. The studio responded that while is cannot comment on individiual employees' circumstances for legal reasons, this was "one of the few unfortunate cases" where the candidate was hired less than a week before the hiring freeze was enforced. As the candidate was moving from within Germany, Goodgame was unable to offer the same level of financial support as those who had moved from other countries.
Goodgame stresses that all staffers were informed about contract terminations and other impacts on their employment as soon as HR had been informed redundancies were necessary.
"It is unfortunate the individual was severly inconvenienced," a spokesperson told Develop. "However, from the HR and legal standing, we did everything in our capacity to support them."
Still no word on how many staff took voluntary redundancy, adding to the 114 compulsory dismissals.
Original Story – 26/08/2016
Goodgame Studios has confirmed it was able to keep the number of layoffs caused by its ongoing restructure to just over 100.
The German developer contacted Develop after we reported the number of jobs lost could be as high as 600 – well above the ‘low triple-digits’ number originally promised - based on information from a source close to the matter.
Goodgame has since responded that now the voluntary redundancy program has concluded, compulsory dismissals could be reduced to 114. It also promised that all dismissals will be “strictly based on the standards and legal regulations applicable in Germany”.
Of course, the overall number of jobs lost will be higher depending on how many employees took the voluntary redundancy package. There are also a number of staffers whose temporary contracts will not be renewed.
Develop requested the full number of team members that opted to leave. Goodgame is unable to share details at this time, but hopes to update us in future.
The studio disputed a few claims made by our previous source. While we reported the company has still been hiring in the run up to job cuts, Goodgame insists a hiring freeze was issues as soon as it became clear that layoffs would be necessary.
The number of dismissals is not also not based on office space. Depending on the final headcount after the redundancies, the firm says “more space can be acquired in the same location”.
Finally, Goodgame clarified the support made available to staff affected by the restructure.
Employees that took voluntary redundancy were given severance pay of 1.5 months’ salary for every year of their employment, capped at three years. Meanwhile those who are dismissed will receive 1.25 months’ pay for every year at the company.
Staff that are on their probation period, having only recently joined the firm, are not protected by German law but Goodgame has still ensured these employees were offered voluntary redundancy.
Any staff terminated for operational reasons have been offered positions at an employment transitional company, which has received funds from Goodgame Studios, as well as a small severance package. Those who do will receive skills training and coaching for three months in order to help them secure employment again.
All expats who need to relocate will be reimbursed up to 50 per cent of their relocation costs. Some individual cases may be entitled to an “additional hardship allowance”.
“It is extremely unfortunate that our international colleagues have found themselves in a precarious position and we are taking numerous measures to support everyone,” a spokesperson told Develop. “Aside from the financial support mentioned, both our off-boarding team as well as the employee committee are extending support to all international colleagues.”