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EA scores 100 per cent for workplace equality

EA scores 100 per cent for workplace equality

Tue 10 Dec 2013 8:36am GMT / 3:36am EST / 12:36am PST
PublishingDevelopment

Human Rights Campaign names publisher one of the "Best Places To Work" in the U.S.

Electronic Arts has received full marks in the Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index for the second year running, making it into the organisation's "Best Places To Work" for 2014.

The Corporate Equality Index is judged based on a range of internal policies and criteria at major businesses in the U.S.. Out of the 304 companies to receive a score of 100 per cent, EA was the only one exclusively focused on video games.

In part, this success was attributed to the company's Diversity & Inclusion Team, which was particularly active over the last year.

EA supported Pride Parades around its offices in San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, Vancouver, Orlando, Austin and Stockholm. It also hosted its own event, Full Spectrum, which brought together key figures from the industry to discuss issues facing the LGBT community in gaming, and was the official sponsor of the first annual GaymerX convention.

"We're very proud that EA has been named a 'Best Place to Work' by HRC again this year and that our organisation has been recognised for providing a workplace that is inclusive and where everyone feels welcome," said Andre Chambers, head of Diversity & Inclusion, in a statement. "We look forward to continuing that tradition in 2014."

EA's ongoing success with the Human Rights Campaign runs contrary to the general perception of the company. In the same two years it has scored 100 per cent on the Corporate Equality Index, it was also named the Worst Company in America in the Consumerist Online Poll.

The full Corporate Equality Index for 2014 can be found here.

31 Comments

Darren Adams Managing Director, ChaosTrend

271 621 2.3
Popular Comment
EA scores 100 per cent for workplace equality
As in they now treat everyone equally as bad?

Sry, couldn't resist. :D

Posted:11 months ago

#1

Mats Holm Technical Process Analyst, EA BioWare

55 50 0.9
Best place to work in Canda: http://www.insightswest.com/news/your-insights-on-2013-dream-employer-of-bc/ and now this. Sounds about right.

Posted:11 months ago

#2

Lewis Brown Snr Sourcer/Recruiter, Electronic Arts

202 56 0.3
Its good from the Inside Darren, no complaints here...

Posted:11 months ago

#3

Tamir Ibrahim Programmer, Rodeo Games

76 56 0.7
Good for EA. Always thought they get a bit too much hate from the internet. Although sometimes they really don't help themselves.

Posted:11 months ago

#4

Christophe Danguien games developer

70 83 1.2
seems like big fat envelopes were given to HRC...

Posted:11 months ago

#5

Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic

1,613 1,475 0.9
@ Mats

To be accurate, that survey was taken from respondants in BC, not Canada as a whole. :)

@ Christophe

Given how outspoken EA have been with LGBT rights and views, I don't see why there should be the implication of bribery here. The score seems totally in-keeping with their positive image.

Above-and-beyond this article, does anyone know if there's a company that has done the same kind of survey, but for general workplace conditions? I'm curious on the statistics for how game companies match non-game industry companies for things like health-care, pension, work/social life balances and internal promotion opportunities. :)

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Morville O'Driscoll on 10th December 2013 3:21pm

Posted:11 months ago

#6

Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd

1,020 1,467 1.4
Congrats EA. Absolutely a great thing you're doing. Keep up the good work.

@ Christophe Seriously? Come on man. That's taking conspiracy theories way too far. What would EA really have to gain by the modest good PR this provides them? You think it really affects their game sales much?

EA are genuinely good to their employees. I have lots of problems with their business practices, but there's no reason you can't be bad at one thing and good at others.

Posted:11 months ago

#7

Tom Keresztes Programmer

694 349 0.5
So you want to work for a company that you would hate as a customer?

Posted:11 months ago

#8

Luke Herbert Game Designer

9 9 1.0
To me it seems as though EA has become the Manchester United of video games. Some of the best people around are in the team, they win a lot of trophies, they sell lots of merchandise. But everyone who isn't a fan just loves to hate them.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Luke Herbert on 10th December 2013 4:39pm

Posted:11 months ago

#9

Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd

1,020 1,467 1.4
@ Tom Would I want to work at EA? Hard to say, I don't know everything about their internal environment, but it's worth noting that change rarely happens from the outside. There are some serious corporate problems in EA that I would love to see changed. I don't think they have a high opinion of consumers and I think they underestimate the very real financial value that comes with treating them well (ask Bethesda or Rockstar if you need to excessively monetize and rush products to make money). That's totally ignoring Origin, which I could write whole articles about.

Of course, that's almost surely on a high end executive level. I suspect the vast majority of employees are doing their best to make great games, regardless of what situations the higher ups force them into on release schedules.

Posted:11 months ago

#10

Andrzej Wroblewski Localization Generalist, Albion Localisations

103 78 0.8
Next step: 100 per cent in quality. From localisation point of view i can only tell that the most important thing for quality in localisation process is including translators in early stages of beta testing so that they could play the game before translating. Our industry has abandoned the practice in the past few years due to moving localisation to earlier stages of game development -- but EA could easily afford to bring the good practice back to life. GG EA! ;-)

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Andrzej Wroblewski on 10th December 2013 4:46pm

Posted:11 months ago

#11

Matt Armstrong Design Director, Electronic Arts

9 23 2.6
Popular Comment
I started work at EA 18 months ago after 15 years in the industry. I was initially dubious about accepting the role given the company's reputation. This even extended to my wife who came close to vetoing my decision on the grounds of the company's history.

The reality, however, has been an entirely pleasant surprise. I'm thoroughly enjoying working for the company and feel that the external perception is a long, long way from the truth. I do, however, say this with one major caveat - I'm just one guy in one studio in one game team. Experiences throughout the wider company may (or may not) vary significantly.

That said, it's somewhat disappointing that Darren's post about EA now treating everyone equally badly hits the external perception strongly enough that it's the Top Rated post.

Posted:11 months ago

#12

Jessica Hyland Character Artist

356 1,522 4.3
Tom, I'd rather work at a company I loved as an employee than one I only loved as a customer. I hear nothing but positive things from my friends at EA studios, sounds like these awards are well-deserved.

Posted:11 months ago

#13

Paul Jace Merchandiser

945 1,433 1.5
It's nice to see EA getting some well-deserved praise. This will go along way in their goal they stated a few months ago, to change their image in order to avoid being voted worst company again by that consumerist poll.

Posted:11 months ago

#14

Paul Johnson Managing Director / Lead code monkey, Rubicon Development

925 1,566 1.7
@Paul. Didn't they also win this last year too? Obviously not helping on that front but does make a pleasant change to read something positive.

Posted:11 months ago

#15

Tom Keresztes Programmer

694 349 0.5
"In April 2013, EA announced a reorganization which was to include dismissal of 10% of their workforce, consolidation of marketing functions which were distributed among the five label organizations, and subsumption of Origin operational leadership under the President of Labels."

Posted:11 months ago

#16

Christophe Danguien games developer

70 83 1.2
Seems nobody has balls here. I know a few people who worked at EA and different studio, none enjoyed it and said the opposite of what this article and other people are saying here, so that's quite surprising.
@Nicholas....maybe because that's how it works with financial powers and life. EA knows they're seen as s...guys, so if they can manage to get this kind of prize, yes it will influence a few people to buy their games.

Posted:11 months ago

#17

Lewis Brown Snr Sourcer/Recruiter, Electronic Arts

202 56 0.3
@Christophe As with any company I have no doubt there will always be good and bad stories. But its important to note people from EA are prepared to come forward and say its a great place to work and believe in the equality piece based on the fact its the right thing to do, not that its PR spin. That's certainly how I view it and agree wholeheartedly with the policy on equality and LGBT.

Posted:11 months ago

#18

Darren Adams Managing Director, ChaosTrend

271 621 2.3
That said, it's somewhat disappointing that Darren's post about EA now treating everyone equally badly hits the external perception strongly enough that it's the Top Rated post.
Everyone here knows EA have had a bit of history and I just saw the obvious joke in the title. I respect EA as a company and I am sure working there is great, but I couldn't pass up that opportunity to have a laugh.

C'mon, if it wasn't me someone else would have said it. :D

Posted:11 months ago

#19

Tom Keresztes Programmer

694 349 0.5
That's certainly how I view it and agree wholeheartedly with the policy on equality and LGBT.
Thats great for the society, but i have a career in games not in politics.

Posted:11 months ago

#20

Jessica Hyland Character Artist

356 1,522 4.3
It's not 'politics' if you're a member of the LGBT community, a racial minority or any other under-represented demographic in the games industry.

We get it Tom, you don't like EA.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Jessica Hyland on 11th December 2013 4:44pm

Posted:11 months ago

#21

Tom Keresztes Programmer

694 349 0.5
It's not 'politics'
Politics (from Greek: politikos, meaning "of, for, or relating to citizens") is the practice and theory of influencing other people on a civic or individual level. It has nothing to do with which group do you belong to.

Posted:11 months ago

#22

Christophe Danguien games developer

70 83 1.2
@Lewis, you work for EA as a recruiter, what you are saying is irrelevant because of that. Nobody, working at EA and with common sense, will come forward on this website and post that working at EA is bad....they would be dismissed straight away.

More over, it's pretty uncommon for a company to behave badly towards their consumers but the best towards their employees...

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Christophe Danguien on 11th December 2013 5:17pm

Posted:11 months ago

#23

Tom Keresztes Programmer

694 349 0.5
Nobody, working at EA and with common sense, will come forward on this website and post that working at EA is bad
Especially not under working hours ;)

Posted:11 months ago

#24

Hugo Trepanier Senior UI Designer, Hibernum

156 144 0.9
I worked for EA during 5 years following the acquisition of my employer's studio and I can honestly say I enjoyed it very much during (most of) that time. Our conditions were generally excellent and it was a very open and respectful place for employees. However I'd say that this probably varies a bit from studio to studio, as our division in Montreal had many groups (Bioware, Visceral, Pogo, Mobile, Playfish, etc) and not all of us seemed to share the exact same conditions even within the same building.

I remember in the last few years we worked especially hard to reduce the gaps in inequalities (mostly regarding salaries) while continuing to find ways to promote creativity and quality workmanship to motivate everyone. There were other reasons that made me want to seek better employment opportunities after 7 years at the same studio. However if you asked me if I'd like to work for EA again in the future, under the right circumstances, I'd say yes without reserve (of course, I'm quite happy in my current position!)

Posted:11 months ago

#25

Christophe Danguien games developer

70 83 1.2
@Tom, Hahaha :-)

@Hugo, as you said, your employer's studio was acquired, so maybe your boss made a deal to make sure the working conditions stays good. "under the right circumstances" -> That's the key I believe.
As you mentioned, other studios in the same building weren't treated the same way, so maybe some of the people in those studios would say that EA is far from being the best place ever. But well, maybe being in Montreal makes it different too ?

Because you said under the right circumstances, your opinion, for me, is much more reliable than the others.

Posted:11 months ago

#26

Michael Vandendriessche Studying Computer Science, K.U. Leuven

85 12 0.1
So, to summarize it:
EA is so big it is both awesome and horrible.

Posted:11 months ago

#27

Carrie Fowler Global Talent Acquisition, Electronic Arts

1 2 2.0
@Christopher – you mention Lewis is a Recruiter so his opinion is irrelevant. As a Recruiter myself, I have feared this very response and it has held me back from commenting in the past. EA has been very good to me over the past 7+ years and I would love to share my own personal story if I didn’t fear it would also be deemed irrelevant. While in different departments, Recruiters have choices too on who they want to work for and for how long. I certainly wouldn’t be at EA 7+ years if I didn’t think it was a good place to work. :)

Posted:11 months ago

#28

Nicholas Pantazis Senior Editor, VGChartz Ltd

1,020 1,467 1.4
@ Carrie Not everyone feels the way Christophe and Tom do. Most of us come here BECAUSE we can talk to people who are directly part of the industry and these companies. I'd love your perspective, even as an EA cynic. ;-)

Posted:11 months ago

#29

Lewis Brown Snr Sourcer/Recruiter, Electronic Arts

202 56 0.3
@Christophe Everybody's view has merit yours and mine included. To dismiss someone purely based on what they do, look like, their choices etc...fits exactly into why this discussion is so important in the first place. Like I said in my last post all workplaces have good and bad employee experiences, I can only recount my own experience regardless of my job title.

Posted:11 months ago

#30

Curt Sampson Sofware Developer

596 360 0.6
Now if they could only get that Diversity and Inclusion Team working on their marketing folks, so that they could be more inclusive towards the diverse customers that don't fit their profile of, "this is how you will use EA."

(E.g., if you live in Japan, you may use Origin only in Japanese, even though they allow multilingual use in other countries. They even have a drop down box for choosing your language, with Japanese as the only selection!)

Posted:11 months ago

#31

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