Ubisoft Singapore bagged two awards—Executive of the Year, and Employee Engagement of the Year—at the SBR Management Excellence Awards 2022.
Opening its doors on the sunny shores of Singapore in 2008, Ubisoft Singapore set off on a vision to be a world class video game studio, and in its subsequent years played an essential role in several gaming blockbusters, including just about every Assassin's Creed® game since Assassin's Creed® II, Immortals Fenyx Rising™, and Ghost Recon Online. The studio’s expertise in AAA games development and live operations, combined with a passion for naval gameplay, pushed the team to lead the development of a brand-new AAA game franchise – Skull and Bones™.
Today, the studio stands as the region’s largest AAA studio with over 500 talented team members representing 35+ nationalities. The studio is responsible for the innovations in naval battle gameplay and water technology in Assassin’s Creed® III, Assassin’s Creed® IV Black Flag® and most recently in Assassin’s Creed® Valhalla. Their journey to create new video games enjoyed by millions around the world comes with excitement, its own set of challenges, and a commitment to build the best environment for team members.
Spearheading a workplace culture transformation
With the leadership of Darryl Long – Managing Director at Ubisoft Singapore and Ubisoft Philippines – a workplace culture transformation was set in motion to elevate the employee experience for Singapore’s top game developers. “It's about respect and recognition,” Long shared. “Video games are fun and making them should be just as fun. We want a fun and caring studio environment where people are respected, and everyone grows together.”
Long’s arrival at the studio also marked the start of a modernisation process for Ubisoft Singapore’s compensation and benefits structure, enabling flexible work hours and a hybrid work model to balance business and team needs. Team members were encouraged to attend engagement sessions to further develop a shared vision for the studio’s role in Southeast Asia and its unique contribution to Ubisoft’s global portfolio.
Today, Long continues to head the Singapore and Philippines studios with a new milestone, Executive of the Year - Computer Software in the SBR Management Excellence Awards.
Giving studio-wide recognition with Kudos
Dedicated to enriching the lives of its team members, the “Kudos” program clinched Singapore Business Review’s Employee Engagement of the Year in Media and Entertainment for its focus on well-being and recognition.
Long’s vision of a transparent work culture also meant a positive work environment where team members can feel supported and empowered to take creative risks – a must when creating the best of fun. The recognition program “Kudos” was developed to celebrate the team members’ successes through nomination and empowerment, modelled by the studio’s core value pillars: Care, Innovate, and Lead.
With Kudos, team members can recognise and commend others across various mediums and platforms. Physical appreciation cards gave team members easy access to show their appreciation to colleagues, and monthly nominations led to heartwarming moments of winners attributing their successes to their wonderful teams.
With the adoption of a data-driven approach, the evolution of team engagement was measured over time. Since its inception in 2021, the Kudos program has increased the psychological and emotional well-being of Ubisoft Singapore’s team members by 14% by emphasising that all successes, big and small, are worth celebrating anytime with anyone.
Creating a long-term vision of team focused culture
Pushing through the pandemic, both Ubisoft Singapore and Ubisoft Philippines saw themselves certified by Great Place To Work®, with internal employee engagement and satisfaction scores vastly improved since 2020. “We want everyone to be proud of working at Ubisoft,” Long said. Creating fun is serious business, and the studio’s journey towards being the top employer in the video game industry continues at full speed, always seeking to create the most memorable experiences for team members and players alike.
This article was originally published on Singapore Business Review, "Creating the future of entertainment".