Studio Policy Bible

Every business needs some policies to keep teams aware of everything they need to know and working smoothly. Here’s one of our old policy documents that’s a little skewed towards a game development studio but most of it should apply to most types of business

A central repository for all the bits of miscellaneous policy staff should be aware of:

1.   HR Policies

1.1.  Please see company general HR policies, available on intranet.

1.2.  Please note that your employment contract will also contain details on certain policies (e.g. working hours)

1.3.  All holiday/unpaid leave etc. forms should pass up the line manager chain before final approval/rejection when they are sent to HR.  Project Managers may finally approve all holiday forms themselves, without need for Exec Producer approval unless holiday is for more than 1 week in which case Exec Producer approval is still required.

1.4.  All recruitment forms should pass up the line manager chain before final approval/rejection by the Studio Head

1.5.  All interviewees should complete an NDA and this should be provided to Studio Head, or sent direct to HR, for filing

1.6.  Any information provided for purposes of advertising vacancies that relates to potential clues as to the nature of the project or identity of the client should be cleared with Studio Head before being sent to HR

2.   IT Policies

2.1.  Please see company wide IT policies, available on intranet.

2.2.  New Starter forms should pass up the line manager chain but  (assuming requirements within agreed standard range) may be approved and sent to IT by the Project Manager (CC Exec Producer / Studio Head)

2.3.  Install forms should pass up the line manager chain but may be approved and sent to IT by the Project Manager.  The Project Manager may agree that Leads can approve install forms directly.

2.4.  All Purchase Requests Forms and Network Request Forms should pass up the line manager chain before final approval/rejection by the Studio Head

2.5.  Please note that Richard Heasman is responsible for switching and storing back-up tapes under direction of IT, Richard will appoint cover for when he is absent.

2.6.  All software install media to be stored by Studio Manager (staff to hand over any install discs that are ‘loose’)

2.7.  Exec Producer(s) and Project Manager(s) will have IT helpdesk accounts and be responsible for logging IT requests from their staff.  Help desk accounts may be requested for other members of staff and will be granted / withheld on a case-by-case basis.

3.   PR

3.1.  All PR content (including draft material) to go through Studio Manager on way to external or internal (i.e. other staff) destinations.

4.   Expenses

4.1.  When possible staff to seek confirmation from Studio Manager that expense claims will be accepted in advance of spending money

4.2.  It can be assumed that reasonable travel expenses (e.g. standard class train tickets or mileage) for meetings which staff have been asked to attend will be accepted

4.3.  Both electronic versions and hardcopies, with attached receipts, to be handed to Line Manager in advance of monthly deadline

4.4.  Line Managers to collate expenses forms and send on to their Line Manager etc. until reach Studio Head who can actually approve expenses and send them to Finance

5.   Absence / Lateness

5.1.  Should you be absent due to sickness or any other reason or late for work (in respect to agreed working hours) you should telephone both HR at head office and your Line Manager to inform them in advance of your expected time of arrival

5.2.  Please note other general HR policies in this area

6.   Line Manager Misc.

6.1.  Please note Line Management policy separately available from the Studio Head, this covers staff supervision and similar meetings.

6.2.  All Line Managers to ensure that on the first working day (or the next practical opportunity) of each month that timesheet information is provided to the Studio Head.  The nature of the information required will vary from time-to-time and therefore Line Managers expected to clarify requirements with the Studio Head.

6.3.  All Line Managers should appoint a deputy to cover their essential duties during absence.

7.   Office Misc.

7.1.  The last person to leave must: ensure all windows are closed, turn off the lights, lock both locks on the door

7.2.  If you sign for any delivery, please get a receipt and give that to Studio Head, also please email Admin and IT to inform them of the delivery.

7.3.  Keep desks reasonably tidy

7.4.  Don’t ‘store’ food / drink etc. anywhere but in the kitchen

7.5.  Tea, coffee, sugar and milk will be provided by the company.  Whoever uses the last of the milk will need to buy more (and claim cost back via expenses until petty cash system established).  Everyone is encouraged to pre-empt the potential disaster of temporarily running out of milk by buying some when it is convenient.  Also please alert Studio Manager if tea, coffee or sugar supplies are running low.

8.   Telephone

8.1.  Please answer the phone when it rings

8.2.  Say ‘ – how may I help you?’ or similar with appropriate upbeat, professional telephone manner!

8.3.  Find out who is calling and check that the person requested can take the call before handing it over (there is a C/Mute Icon button that mutes the call!)

8.4.  Note, guide on how to use the phone system is on the studio wikki

9.   External documents

9.1.  Please send all external documents in PDF format

9.2.  All external documents relating to sales activity must be cleared by the Studio Head and final versions filed

  1. Confidentiality

10.1.      Unless explicitly told otherwise please assume that all information regarding company activity is confidential

  1. Server

11.1.      Only alter the contents of any network drive with permission of whoever is responsible for that drive.  The exception being Temp which is a free for all (within reason).  The Project Manager is responsible for a project specific drive, New Projects Lead is responsible for the New Projects drive, and the Studio Head responsible for the General drive.

  1.  Overrides

12.1.      The following policy from the Employee handbook is modified as shown:

Game Play

At the discretion of the management the use of company machines and the network for personal playing games is permitted during the following periods:

  • Before 9:00 am
  • between 12:3045 pm and 1:1530 pm
  • after 6:30 pm

Game Play during these periods must not interrupt any members of staff working in the same area – use of headphones rather than speakers is required.


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