Employment Contracts Within The Games Industry

Full-Time and Part-Time Contracts

Employees have certain rights when it comes to a contract. These are enforced by the law providing outlines for the maximum amount of hours worked, how many breaks etc.

Expectations:

A written statement of your employment or contract. A contract is an agreement between the employee and employers setting out the rights responsibilities and duties of the employee.

The statutory minimum level of paid holiday. If you have a full time contract (5 days a week) you're entitled to 28 days of holiday annually with full pay. If you're on a part time contract (3 days a week) you're entitled to 16 days of holiday annually with full pay.

A payslip showing all deductions. Your employer is legally obligated to provide a payslip showing all deductions such as NIC (national insurance contribution).

The statutory minimum length of rest breaks. If you're aged 16-18 you're entitled to a 30 minute rest break after working for 4.5hours. For 18+ workers, if the working day is longer then 6 hours then the employee is entitled to a 20 minute rest break.

Statutory sick pay, Maternity, paternity and adoption pay and leave. The SSP (statutory sick pay) is £88.45 a week. This is required to be paid for up to 39 weeks, you must first qualify for SSP and of been sick for 4 days in a row (including non working days). The SMP (statutory maternity pay) has to be paid to eligible employees for up to 39 weeks, the first 6 weeks is 90% of their average weekly earnings (AWE) before tax, the remaining 33 weeks the employee will be paid £139..58 or 90% of their AWE before tax (whichever is lower). Employees must take a minimum of 2 weeks break after the birth or 4 weeks for factory workers. Statutory adoption leave can last up to 56 weeks, the first 26 known as ordinary adoption leave and the last 26 known as additional adoption leave. Leave for adoption can start when: the child starts living with the employee or up to 14 days before, the day the child is born or the day after, when the employee has been match or placed with a child, when the child arrives in the UK or within 28 days of this. SAP (statutory adoption pay) for employees is 90% of their average gross weekly earnings for the first 6 weeks of leave. After the first 6 weeks it's £139.58 a week or 90% of their average gross weekly earnings, whichever is lower for the next 33 weeks.

Make sure employees don't work more then the maximum allowed. You can't work more then 48 hours in a week, if you're under the age of 18 you can't work more then 40 hours a week or 8 hours a day. You can choose to opt out of these limits.

Pay employees at least the minimum wage. The minimum wages for different ages are: age 25 is £7.20 an hour, age 21 to 24 is £6.95 an hour, age 18 to 20 is £5.55 an hour, under the age of 18 is £4.00 and hour and for apprentices it's £3.40. Apprentices are entilted to their ages minimum wage if their over 19 and have completed the first year in their apprenticeship.

Have employer's liability insurance. This covers any compensation of employees who're injuried or fall ill because of work.

Provide a safe and secure working environment. Aswell as keeping you safe during your work e.g. if you work with machinery taking steps to stop injuries. This also means you are safe from threats, harassment and feel safe working in the enviroment.

Register with HM Revenue and Customs to deal with payroll, tax and NICs. This is a part of the goverment that deals with collecting taxes, and regulating other things such as minimum wage.

Consider flexible working requests. If any employee has been with a company for 26 weeks they can make a statutory request to change their contractual terms and conditions of employment to work. This can only be made every 12 monthes.

Avoid discrimination within the workplace.

Make reasonable adjustments to allow for disabled employees to access the workspace. If an employee is disabaled the company has to make changes for the employee to have ease of access in and out of the work place.

Fixed-Term Contracts

Fixed-term contracts, is a contract that has an end date e.g. this contract will end 05/12/2016 or at the completetion of certain projects/tasks. As a fixed term employee you will receive the same rights as a full-time employee, including holidays and other benefits.

Agency Staff

Agency staff are people who have a contract with an agency but work temp with a company.

Agency staff have majority of the same rights as full-time staff. Agency staff don't have: Staturoy redundancy pay, claim unfair dismissal, claim maternity leave, claim adoption leave, claim paternity leave, a written statement of main terms and conditions of employment.

Freelancers, Consultants and Contractors

Freelancers, consultants and contractors are considered self-employed or part of other companies. FCC have to manage their own national insurance contributions. Whoever you're working for is still responsible for your safety and safe working enviroment. FCC aren't always entitled to the same rights as full-time employees e.g. minimum wage, all depending on the circumstances.

Zero Hour Contracts

Zero hour contracts, is a contract where you aren't given any set work. Your employer doesn't have to give you work and you don't have to work when asked. You're allowed to get work elsewhere and your employer can't stop you. You're entitled to statutory annual leave and national minimum wage.

Employing Family, Volunteers and Young People

When hiring, or being hired as family you must avoid: special treatment, make sure NIC is still paid, follow working time regulations, be covered by employers liability insurance.

Volunteers must be given an inductions and training in tasks they're going to be doing, and your employer is responsible for your safety.

Young people if they are aged 13 and over can be employed. They're entitled to maturnity and paternity if they qualify. Young people are also allowed time off for study and training and redundunacy pay.

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