In December 2022, high quality assurance employees at ZeniMax introduced their intention to kind a union. The 300 QA employees have now voted “overwhelmingly” to unionise and the union has been voluntarily recognised by ZeniMax homeowners Microsoft, making ZeniMax Workers United the biggest union within the games trade.
As per QA employees at Raven Software and Blizzard Albany earlier than them, ZeniMax Workers United have partnered with the umbrella Communication Workers Of America (CWA) union.
Unlike these unions, ZeniMax employees didn’t need to take their struggle for a union to the US National Labor Relations Board. Activision Blizzard, homeowners of Raven Software and Blizzard Albany, refused to voluntarily recognise employees unionisation efforts, prompting a authorized struggle which finally the employees gained. ZeniMax is owned by Microsoft, who final yr publicly introduced a neutrality agreement with the CWA – probably as a approach to assuage issues over their ongoing efforts to purchase Activision Blizzard for $69 billion.
While ZeniMax is greatest generally known as Bethesda Softworks former guardian firm earlier than the Microsoft acquisition, the 300 QA employees employed there work throughout all associated studios – together with Arkane, Id Software, ZeniMax Online Studios, Tango Gameworks and MachineGames.
“We’re thrilled to kick off 2023 in a office that is stronger and extra equitable than it was final yr,” mentioned ZeniMax QA tester Skylar Hinnant. “This is an empowering victory that enables us to guard ourselves and one another in a means we by no means may and not using a union.”
In an announcement to PC Gamer, Microsoft mentioned that they seemed ahead “to partaking in good religion negotiations as we work in direction of a collective bargaining settlement.” ZeniMax Workers United can be the primary recognised union of Microsoft staff.