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“I don't think you can judge someone's work output by the amount of leave they are taking.”
- Rocketwerkz CEO Deal Hall discusses how a less restrictive time off policy fits into the studio.
For some staff, Rocketwerkz offers unlimited leave and requires they take a minimum of 4 weeks off per year, a move CEO Dean Hall says aims to both attract talent and keep spirits on the up at the New Zealand-based studio.
Rocketwerkz is far from the first game studio to offer a generous time off policy as a job perk, but Hall’s chat with the publication Stuff shares a look at how that policy has been implemented at the studio, and how leadership has had to adapt it to best fit the needs of different team members.
The goal, he explains, is to keep staff from feeling like they need to ration their time off for big events and begrudgingly show up to the office on days like holiday adjacent workdays they’d rather have off. Previously, that meant offering unlimited time off to the studio as a whole.
That first system had a handful of hiccups, leading leadership to eventually mandate team members with unlimited take at least 4 weeks off per year, and later introducing seniority tiers to access to the perk after realizing some more junior staff required more structure.
In its current form, Hall says junior staff are generally offered a more traditional leave structure, while mid-tier staff are granted unlimited sick leave, and senior staff are given unlimited leave altogether.
"You can have 30 people working on $20 million or $30m project so you're putting a lot of trust in them already," Hall explains. "If you are trusting them with big projects and large amounts of money, why can't you trust them to manage their time as well? That's the point we started with."