Activision Blizzard has announced that all of its US-based QA testers will become full-time employees.
The company also revealed that the employees would receive an hourly wage increase to a minimum of $20 per hour.
A statement from Activision Blizzard reads: “Today we announced the conversion of all US-based temporary and contingent QA team members at Activision Publishing and Blizzard – nearly 1,100 people in total – to permanent full-time employees starting on July 1.”
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An internal email from COO Joshua Taub reads: “QA is, and continues to be, critical to our development success. We have amazing QA teams in place that work hard to ensure our players have the best possible gaming experiences: thank you.”
Taub’s email continues: “As Call of Duty evolves, we anticipate periods where the workload will fluctuate and exceed our expanded team’s bandwidth. with this in mind, we’re adding extra support for our team from external partners.”
The 34-strong group, called the Game Workers Alliance, officially asked parent company, Activision Blizzard, to recognise the union, which, should it be recognised, would be the first-ever at a major North American game development studio.
A Communication Workers of America spokesperson told Polygon at the time that 78% of eligible QA workers voted to support unionisation.
In an open letter posted in March, Activision Blizzard employees asked CEO Satya Nadella whether Microsoft had authorised Activision to rule on the recognition of the union.
The Raven workers also accused Activision of using “union-busting” tactics to prevent their action, and called on Microsoft to stop the “campaign that is being waged against us”.
Responding to the letter at the time, a Microsoft spokesperson told Axios: “Microsoft will not stand in the way if Activision Blizzard recognizes a union.”