Vacancies surge

Pandemic fuels a jobs boom in computer games

Grand Theft Auto

The Grand Theft Auto series from Edinburgh was a global sensation

Lockdown is fuelling a jobs boom in the gaming sector which has seen a 20% increase in vacancies in the past year.

This is predicted to increase threefold in the next five years and follows a 218% jump in physical game sales over the past few months.

Gaming companies are rapidly increasing recruitment into the sales and marketing space in order to better monetise their products. In 2019 there was a 25% increase in marketing vacancies compared to the previous year.

Edinburgh is among eight town and city regions where computer games are now generating more than £60m in gross added value to the local economy. The others are Newcastle Upon Tyne, Leamington Spa, Crawley and Horsham, Manchester, Guildford, Slough and Heathrow, and London

The findings appear in a new report from recruitment agency Robert Walters which reveals that 23 towns and cities across the UK are home to more than 20 game companies.

These micro-businesses of fewer than 10 employees represent almost 14% of the industry total – employing 4,000 full-time roles and generating £339m in GVA.

Despite being one of the UK’s youngest tech sectors, gaming has risen in prominence in the past five years, employing a combined 47,000 professionals directly and indirectly across related industries, such as merchandising or eSports.

Tom Chambers, senior manager technology at Robert Walters, says: “With the average contribution per employee of the gaming sector sitting at £80,000 – double the national average and the most productive of all the creative industries in the nation – there is no industry quite like gaming that is able to evidence its high potential in helping to uphold the UK economy as we navigate out of the pandemic.”

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