If there’s one thing we’ve learnt this year, it’s definitely resilience and adaptation.
Earlier than required by governmental regulation, Ludia made the decision to transition to work-from-home mode. All the logistics and adaptation of those first days brought their share of challenges, new routines, and processes to implement. And in this, our Ludians were extraordinary.
Adaptation and Revelation
After this first period of adaptation came the time of realizations. Working from home was a way of working that had not been envisioned for Ludia until then, as we strongly believe in physical human relationships, face-to-face brainstorm meetings, and the importance of casual coffee chats to nourish our spirits, our thoughts and the development of our games. Yet in the face of this difficult situation we have seen our Ludians surpass themselves; exchanging, being resourceful, always motivated, listening and caring even more than they did before. Some faced more difficulties than others, which we addressed head on because the well-being of our employees is a priority. While other employees are making their mark and blossoming more than ever. Generally speaking, this new way of working coincides very well today at Ludia in this particular context, even if it is not ideal for everyone.
A Guided and Documented Reflection
Over the past few months, we sent out and shared several surveys with our Ludians. This was done in order to check on how they were doing, because their well-being is a priority, but also to involve them in our reflections, because our organizational decisions must also respond to their problems and realities.
Then this summer, after over 5 months of working from home, the question of whether or not a possible return to the office and what its conditions would be, came to discussion. Even if this reflection was one of long-term, the management team began discussing options. After all, adapting was a necessary reaction and step to take this year, but anticipating, being proactive, and innovative in our ways of working was definitely on our minds.
We therefore launched a new survey on the issue of flexibility, which highlighted several key elements:
· Work-from-home offers great advantages to many Ludians, such as: savings in travel time that allow them to develop their personal lives, fewer distractions, and a calmer, more suitable work environment for some.
· The social aspect of the office is still essential for many people and is what Ludians miss the most at the moment.
· The last few months have profoundly changed the vision of the ideal work environment for many of our employees. New routines more adapted to their life and new needs and desires for balance have emerged.
· A majority of employees would be interested in a hybrid way of working and combining both work-from-home and work-from-office.
We also became even more aware of something essential: each employee represents a unique situation, context, and issues that are very specific and different from someone else’s. Parents, single people, expatriates, introverts, extroverts, artists, programmers, designers, producers, QA, support, corporate functions: the studio encompasses very different profiles. And if there is one thing that has become obvious, it is that flexibility will be different for everyone and that one identical program would not work for everyone.
Creating the Flex Program
Concerned about giving the best working conditions to the employees and based on the lessons learned over the last few months and the feedback received, a group composed of several Ludians, the executives, the Talent & Culture team, and the IT team worked on the creation of a flexibility program.
Open to all, customizable, modular, adaptable to changes in life and needs, evolving according to the tools that are and will be available in the future, and innovations in terms of methods in work. These are the main points of our new program, designed for (and thanks to the results of the survey also by) our Ludians.
- Flexibility Based on Your Needs:
From home or from the office, everyone can choose the work environment that suits them best! The format will be fully customizable, regardless of level and position. It will also be modular according to changes in situation or daily life. It will not be a matter of choosing a fixed program per week, month, quarter or other, but rather of being able to adapt it to one’s needs at any given time. The idea is to offer Ludians the possibility to organize themselves as they wish to guarantee the best balance and to respond perfectly to their needs. We simply keep the usual core hours following their returns to facilitate exchanges and collaboration within the studio.
- Geographic Mobility:
More and more people want to be able to live outside of Montreal. In order to allow them to do so, it will now be possible to work from wherever they wish throughout the province of Quebec.
- Mobile Workstation:
Whether in the office, at home or in hybrid mode, we want our Ludians to be well equipped to work in the best conditions, and we will make sure they are. As a result, they will have access to the equipment they need on a daily basis no matter their current work environment.
- Office Space:
Our office is reinventing itself! Hybrid meeting rooms, equipment, new workspaces (collaborative, concentration, individual): the teams in charge are working hard to create a new workspace designed to meet our new hybrid work modes to come.
- Office Life:
Ludia has always had a very rich life at the studio, and it is planning to continue and even aim higher on this social aspect! Training, events, assemblies, game launches: great moments to come!
This program will of course require many adaptations in terms of technological, managerial and organizational levels. And even after its official launch, when employees return to the office, we plan to continue to work on it in order to come up with versions that are always better adapted to everyone.
Our goal is and will always remain to provide solutions that best meet the needs of our employees while maintaining a good balance with the needs of the studio and the production of our games.
The harmony of our teams, our exchanges, and the beautiful culture within the studio are important aspects to us and we will do everything possible to protect them. So we say: “At the office or at home, but always one united crew!”