"Men still dominate the industry," the IGDA says.
Game industry respondents worked for an average of four different employers in the past five years, and nearly half of all developers earn less than $50,000 annually; 19 percent earn more than $100,000 annually. The average respondent has been in the industry for nine years and has worked on 16 projects. When these developers leave the industry, 39 percent of the time it's to find a better quality of life. Fifteen percent of respondents say they leave because they're burned out.
"Similar to the findings in the 2009 survey, respondents say they feel they need to work more hours than are specifically required or expected," the report says. Fifty-three percent of respondents say "crunch" is not a necessary aspect of game development, and 37 percent report they receive no extra compensation for working a crunch schedule.
See the visual breakdown of these numbers below.
MOUNT ROYAL, NJ ‐ 24 JUNE 2014 - The percentage of women in the game development workforce has nearly doubled since 2009; workers change jobs frequently, but most love their jobs and are in a career that is their passion -- but crunch time and the desire to have more work/life balance still exists, according to a survey of more than 2,200 developers in the industry by the International Game Developers Association (IGDA). Here are some of the key findings:
· Men still dominate the industry: 76% of respondents identified as male; 22% identified as female. The other 2% listed themselves as male-to-female transgender, male-to female transgender or "other." This represents a significant change from 2009, when women made up 11.5% of the industry. (The prior IGDA survey tracked only male and female gender identification)
· Nearly 50% of all members of the developer work force earn less than $50,000 annually. 34% earn between $50 and $100,000. At the other end of the spectrum, 19% earn more than $100,000.
· The average survey respondent has worked in the game industry for nine years; has worked on 16 distinct projects and had an average of four employers in the last five years.
· The primary reason for working in the industry is "to earn a living doing what I enjoy" (41%) and 61% plan to work indefinitely in the field. That said, the top reason for wanting to leave the industry is "I want a better quality of life." (39%)
· Similar to the findings in the 2009 survey, respondents say they feel they need to work more hours than are specifically required or expected. 53% responded either "disagree" or "strongly disagree" to the notion that crunch is a necessary part of game development.
· While crunch exists, 37% of respondents indicated that they receive no compensation for that extra time.
IGDA's 2014 Developer Satisfaction Survey is the evolution of the association's previous Quality of Life and Diversity surveys, aimed at better understanding the game industry from the perspective of the individual developer. The IGDA survey was a joint project with its research partners, M2 Research and the University of Western Ontario, which oversaw, the organization's Quality of Life surveys in 2004 and 2009.
The IGDA plans to use the results to better understand its members' priorities and the most critical issues affecting their overall satisfaction, and in turn use that information to help prioritize the association's advocacy efforts and initiatives, according to Kate Edwards, executive director.
The IGDA will be releasing the Summary Report of its Developer Satisfaction Survey in July and following up in subsequent months with more in-depth, thematic reports on developer response to topics like Diversity, Quality of Life and Employment Practices.
The IGDA 2014 DSS Survey was created and analyzed by: Kate Edwards,Executive Director, International Game Developers Association; with the assistance of Johanna Weststar, Assistant Professor, DAN Program in Management and Organizational Studies, Western University; Wanda Meloni, CEO & Senior Analyst, M2 Research; Celia Pearce, Associate Professor of Game Design, College of Arts, Media and Design, Northeastern University and Marie-Josée Legault, Professor, École des sciences de l'administration, TÉLUQ.