Big companies in the UK are required to provide the government with data regarding the pay gap that exists between male and female employees. This also applies to gaming companies. Kotaku did some digging and found that women earned significantly less than men at companies like GTA series developer Rockstar North and others.
The public report for Scotland-based Rockstar North shows that the average woman’s hourly rate is 64 percent lower than their male colleagues, which means women there earn £0.36 for every £1 that a man does. In terms of bonus payments, 83.9 percent of women received them, compared to 89 percent of men at Rockstar North. However, the average woman’s bonus pay was 84 percent lower than men’s.
Rockstar North studio director Andrew Semple said in a supporting document that the significant gender pay gap at the studio mostly comes down to the structure of the outfit. Specifically, the studio’s longest tenured employees who make up most of the senior staff and are compensated related to that are men. Semple maintains that Rockstar North employees are “fairly compensated based on merit and without reference to gender.”
That being said, Semple added that Rockstar North is committed to closing the gap. The studio pledges to “continue to find new ways to support and encourage women to both take up and advance in career opportunities in game development.”
Following up on the report, a Rockstar representative told Kotaku that the company is “proactively working to decrease this disparity.”
“We look forward to seeing representation of our female colleagues continue to grow in all roles and at all levels as we actively recruit, train, and encourage women to pursue career opportunities at Rockstar North and within our industry,” the spokesperson said.
According to Kotaku, it is against the law in the UK for employees in the same position to be paid different amounts. As you can see in the document, only 8 percent of Rockstar North’s highest paid employees are women
The pay gap between men and women at video game companies is not limited to Rockstar North, though the percent difference is among the highest among UK video game studios. For example, the pay gap at EA is 13.7 percent; 12.8 percent at Sony; and 6.6 percent at Microsoft. You can use this public database to find the results for any company, though only those with 250 employees are more are required to share this salary information.
In all, more than 10,000 employers in the UK reported pay gap details this week. Looking at all the companies across all industries, more than 78 percent of them paid men more than women, according to a report from the BBC.