Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot has emailed employees of the company today, providing an update on the publisher’s investigations into abuse, and highlighting “four closely related areas in which we need to improve quickly”.
Ubisoft has been wracked by numerous accusations of sexual, verbal, and systemic abuse, with multiple senior staff members leaving and being fired from the company. In an email provided to IGN, Guillemot explains the subsequent independent investigations, sharing that 2,000 employees participated in the listening sessions, 14,000 responded to anonymous surveys, 100 interviews were conducted, and 40 focus groups were held.
Following this audit, Ubisoft has identified “four closely related areas in which we need to improve quickly”:
- Guarantee a working environment where everyone feels respected and safe.
- Putting diversity and inclusion at the heart of everything we do.
- Refocus and strengthen our HR function.
- Make the managers of the group accountable and empower them.
According to Ubisoft’s internal investigation, roughly 25% of employees “have experienced or witnessed some form of workplace misconduct in the past two years, and that 1 in 5 do not feely fully respected or safe in the work environment.”
Ubisoft says it’s ramping up specialized help and support for employees, along with enact mandatory anti-sexism and anti-harassment training. Guillemot mentions it has already carried out disciplinary actions as a result of its internal investigation, but in the future, the Code of Conduct will be revised and enforced going forward.
Ubisoft also says it is looking for new VPs to “complement the Editorial team and help create more diverse and inclusive games[.]” Ubisoft’s Editorial team is in charge of the story and central creative decisions for every Ubisoft game and has been criticized for lacking diversity. The company is also interviewing a Head of Diversity and Inclusion.
“Some also expressed doubts about our ability to change. “I assure you, these changes will take place, and we will carry them out together,” Guillemot concludes. Though it will take time to see the full results of Ubisoft’s internal changes, especially as the company still needs to fill key roles for VP, Editorial, and Diversity and Inclusion.
Matt T.M. Kim is a reporter for IGN.