Every day in January – and thanks our 'New Year, New Job' series' huge popularity – well into February, Develop is helping job-hunters and employers with advice and tips from the industry's finest developers, experts, HR specialists and recruitment execs on a range of topics.
Today we bring you a detailed guide to relocating for work in the games industry – be it overseas or at the other side of your country – penned by Avatar Games Recruitment's managing director Eamonn Mgherbi.
Avatar's Guide to Games Industry Relocation
• Be sure that relocation is the right option for you and your family
Relocating can be an exciting adventure but it can also be quite daunting. Make sure that you and your family are 100 per cent committed before applying for jobs that would require relocation.
• Make sure you are committed to the move
Before embarking on a lengthy interview process ask yourself whether this is truly the right decision for you, to avoid wasting your own or the company’s time. This will avoid any unnecessary complications later on in the interview stage if you decide that you are unable to go through with relocation. However companies do respect that there can be unforeseen circumstances which will affect your decision and are often very understanding.
• Research the area
Once you have decided on the company you are interested in its time to do your research. Make sure the area suits the needs of you and your family, for example has it got adequate transport links, schools, doctors etc?
• If your relocation is overseas...
If you are relocating to another country it is important to familiarise yourself with the culture and traditions.- Again consider carefully whether these will meet the needs of you and your family.
• Cost of living
Make sure you are aware of the cost of living and consider whether your salary will enable you and your family to have the standard of living you are looking for. It may be a good idea to look into the cost of a weekly grocery shop, house rental prices and transport costs tp give you a basic idea of the cost of living.
Consider how the relocation will impact on your family. If you are relocating to a country that speaks a different language consider taking lessons before you relocate as it may help you to integrate into a new community more easily; some studios offer language courses onsite or will help you find local classes. You will also need to consider whether your partner will be able to find employment and if there are local schools etc.
• Relocation costs
Relocation can be expensive. Some companies can provide relocation assistance, so if cost is a factor it may be worth finding out if the company can offer any assistance or financial support. Cost of living statistics can often be found on various websites or can be made available via recruiters or HR staff of the studio you're thinking of going to.
When moving to a new area or country it is definitely worth renting for a few months to make sure that the area and job are right for you and your family before making a long-term financial commitment. Ask the company or recruiter if they are able to provide advice on reputable estate agents; in some cases studios can recommend estate agents which offer discounts and savings towards property rental.
• Work/life balance
Remember it is not all about work. Get involved in your local community and see what leisure opportunities are available, local websites and word of mouth can be a great way to see what’s happening in the area you are planning on moving to.
• Studio Long Term Plans
Don’t be afraid to ask a studio what there long term objectives are for a project. If the project is close to completion they may have another project in the pipeline for you to work on. It is definetly a good idea to ask these questions before you uproot yourself and/or your family.
Our daily 'New Year, New Jobs' series of articles are extracted from the February issue of Develop magazine – currently available in several forms – which boasts an essential compendium of advice, tips and tricks on getting a new job and improving your employment prospects.The same issue brings you all the results from our sweeping games industry Salary Survey. Check back with Develop Online every day this month for more.
And if you're looking for a new career, or hoping to find some top new talent, be sure to check Develop's Jobs Board.
To find out more about advertising opportunities relating to our New Year, New Job series contact Alex.Boucher@intentmedia.co.uk or call him on +44 (0) 1992 535 646.