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A worker reckoning at Nintendo (AXIOS) Stephen Totilo

nush

Member
Just feels like journalists trying to turn this into some huge scandal since it's the only time they get real clicks. Hurry up and go down the drain, game journalism.

yes, they got scandal on Microsoft, Actiblizz and Sony and are just looking to find some dirt on Nintendo.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
I spent much of my late 20's and early 30's installing equipment and software in corporate offices and distribution facilities across North America. I didn't get to attend employee lunches, holiday parties and birthday parties those companies sponsored, either. But I knew I didn't work for those companies.

I get that these people didn't feel like they were part of Nintendo. But they weren't part of Nintendo. Most likely they worked in a Parker call center. NOA outsources a bunch of customer service work to Parker and Parker handles the hassle of management, training, hiring, turnover, etc. Most people only stay in these jobs for a couple of months so it's less stress on internal HR at Nintendo if another company deals with it. If these folks want to work for Nintendo they should be applying for Nintendo jobs.

Maybe they were confused and believed the job they took was actually with Nintendo. Maybe Parker misrepresented it. But you'd think when that first paycheck showed up that they would have understood who they were working for.
Exactly.

Being a contract worker is more like being your own boss as an independent worker going from company to company. And a lot of contract workers come from placement agencies, which I'd expect is done most of the time for low level jobs. So in reality, their boss is really the agency who probably takes a 20% cut of their wages for the first 12 months. So if the company they are contracted to work for sucks, go tell the recruiter who got you the job the company sucks and find them a new place to work. But for higher level jobs, the person does their own thing as their own boss. A lot of companies hiring for higher level contract jobs (ie. 12 month gig to fill for a mat leave), the company may hire direct. Or they can still go through a recruiting agency.

People get confused because they do report to a company boss, so they think they are an employee. Technically they arent. For any of you who dont know this, when a company reports employee count, they include PT and FT workers. Contract workers arent part of the tally. A company might say they got 200 people working at the office, but in reality maybe only 180 are recognized corporate head count in the books. The 20 contract workers are excluded.

So video game wise, when a dev says their studio has 100 working on the game, they can be right. But who knows what the ratio is between employees and contract workers.
 
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nush

Member
So video game wise, when a dev says their studio has 100 working on the game, they can be right. But who knows what the ratio is between employees and contract workers.

I've worked on games where we had 250+ QA staff all contracted. Actual development team was way way less.

If Nintendo just moved this building full of contractors away from the main site these complaints would amount to nothing more than "Being a contact worker in a customer support role is shit". It's only because they can see the actual Nintendo corporate office so close and yet they are so far from ever having the skills and experience to get in there, that it's "unfair".
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
I've worked on games where we had 250+ QA staff all contracted. Actual development team was way way less.

If Nintendo just moved this building full of contractors away from the main site these complaints would amount to nothing more than "Being a contact worker in a customer support role is shit". It's only because they can see the actual Nintendo corporate office so close and yet they are so far from ever having the skills and experience to get in there, that it's "unfair".
  • Their accounts square with those published by gaming news sites Kotaku and IGN. Those outlets cited interviews with dozens of workers who say Nintendo treats its large contingent of contractors, technically employed by staffing firms, as second-class citizens.
  • These contractors fume about a status quo they believe was established to avoid violating labor laws: cycles of 10- or 11-month contracts that can be quickly cut short and are followed by two-month breaks, with expectations they’ll come right back.
  • They describe employees who log three, five, even 10 years of these cycles, without many of the benefits of full-timers, but are never converted to full-time.

As weird as it seems, the contract workers complaining don't even know what it means to be a contract worker. Also, who says Nintendo wants to hire FT any of these CSRs? Maybe Nintendo wants zero employee CSR departments. I dont know. So tough luck. I dont know one company I've worked for whose cafeteria is run in house. Its always one of those Aramark or Sodexho kinds of companies. If one of them wants to work for the company as a FT employee, you can try all you want but if the company doesn't want to hire FT kitchen employees, you'll never get a FT job here.

Get a different contract job (like a half decent office job), and the company may offer you FT employee tenure. My company has hired some of the university placement summer students doing marketing assistants or junior analyst roles (more like glorified excel and ppt slide maker). But they graduated and were looking for a job, so some of them got offered entry level roles related to what they did and some got promoted. It went summer student gig --> contract worker --> FT worker. It can happen.
 
I’m sorry, but in all of these type of stories are people forgetting their are likely thousands of businesses locally that would likely have the same or similar roles available with full time perks.

If your not happy with your lot in life, change it, I dropped my career, went back to university, got a degree and tripled my base income.

Honestly, I don’t blame Nintendo or any other company using contractors for lower level or seasonal positions.

Nintendo made a choice, the workers made theirs. If either have a problem with that, part ways and get a better fit.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
I’m sorry, but in all of these type of stories are people forgetting their are likely thousands of businesses locally that would likely have the same or similar roles available with full time perks.

If your not happy with your lot in life, change it, I dropped my career, went back to university, got a degree and tripled my base income.

Honestly, I don’t blame Nintendo or any other company using contractors for lower level or seasonal positions.

Nintendo made a choice, the workers made theirs. If either have a problem with that, part ways and get a better fit.
They describe employees who log three, five, even 10 years of these cycles

If someone is hating a CSR job after 10 years of doing it, I dont think this person is going anywhere else. It's live or die by the sword as a staffing agency CSR contract worker.
 

Shouta

Member
There's a few things in the article I'd say probably has more going on than meets the eye but most of it is on the nose about the situation at Nintendo. Contractors are pretty second-class despite a lot of the veterans taking on team leadership, training new hires, and other responsibilities. Some are doing as much or more than the official employees on a day to day basis. Yet very few become full-time employees because there really isn't a clear path. You'd think they would incentivize the better talent to stay, especially considering how much turnover there is, but apparently Nintendo leadership is fine with having to train new recruits all the time instead of keeping their really productive or even moderately productive people around. It's also especially puzzling because there's a lot of just outright terrible workers that come in through those doors.

I worked about 3 years there total, both in Product Testing and their Call Center. So I've seen both areas firsthand.
 

nush

Member
There's a few things in the article I'd say probably has more going on than meets the eye but most of it is on the nose about the situation at Nintendo. Contractors are pretty second-class despite a lot of the veterans taking on team leadership, training new hires, and other responsibilities. Some are doing as much or more than the official employees on a day to day basis. Yet very few become full-time employees because there really isn't a clear path. You'd think they would incentivize the better talent to stay, especially considering how much turnover there is, but apparently Nintendo leadership is fine with having to train new recruits all the time instead of keeping their really productive or even moderately productive people around. It's also especially puzzling because there's a lot of just outright terrible workers that come in through those doors.

I worked about 3 years there total, both in Product Testing and their Call Center. So I've seen both areas firsthand.

Finally someones uncle actually posts on GAF.
 

Northeastmonk

Gold Member
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