Thursday, July 25, 2024

Warhammer maker gives its ‘unique, and often quirky’ staff $8,600 each

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Games Workshop, the owner of the tabletop strategy game Warhammer and the European licenser of Dungeons & Dragons, is paying staff around $8,600 each as a reward for surging sales at the group.

The gaming company announced it was paying out an £18 million ($22.9 million) bonus to all its staff after reporting a 16.9% profit surge last year.

Games Workshop paid out the bonus equally to its employees, numbering 2,645 last year.

It’s a steep jump on last year’s £11 million ($14 million) payout to staff, thanks to a double-digit sales increase that helped the company rake in £490 million ($622 million) in revenue in 2023/24.

The Nottingham-based company likely got a boost from a landmark deal with Amazon, agreed last December. The deal allows the e-commerce and streaming giant to create films and TV series based on its Warhammer 40,000 series, with former Superman star Henry Cavill lined up to star.

Games Workshop got a boost from the COVID-19 pandemic, pushing new people to discover the company’s figurines and games. 

Unlike other COVID stocks, that jump sustained itself as people returned to normal life, partly thanks to the cost-of-living crisis.

Games Workshop’s employees

In last year’s annual report, Games Workshop said it aims to “pay our staff what they have earned for the value they contribute.”

Games Workshops’s employees come in all shapes and sizes, working at every stage of the operation from product design to warehouse shipping and in the group’s 530 stores. 

Because of its profit-sharing scheme, Games Workshop, started almost 50 years ago by three schoolfriends in Hammersmith, puts recruitment at the center of its growth strategy and expects its staff to work for their profit-tied reward.

The group describes its workers as “unique and often quirky” but also expects extreme professionalism from them to deliver results.

“We look for those with the appropriate attitude and behaviour a given job requires and for those who are aligned with our principles and who are quality obsessed,” Games Workshop wrote in last year’s earnings.

In addition to the profit-tied bonus, Games Workshop workers get discounts of up to 50% on the company’s products.

However, while Games Workshop amplifies its generous share reward scheme, the group is dismissive of prospective employees’ concerns about compensation.

In response to an FAQ about why Games Workshop doesn’t advertise salaries on its application, the company says: “We want people to apply for a job because that’s what they really want to do, not because of the size of the salary. That’s also why we ask you to write a letter explaining why you want the job.”

While the $8,600 bonus is a big boost for any employee, it will be especially significant to the company’s high-street workers.  

According to jobs board Glassdoor, some Games Workshop sales assistants receive as little as £18,000 per year, meaning the bonus could represent a 48% raise on top of their base salary.

Games Workshop relies on its physical stores to introduce new customers to its universe. It offers free introductory experiences, taking them through the building and painting of their figurines before using them in games.

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