After the Layoffs Sony is Now Working on Hiring Again; Insider Explains What Happened

It’s no mystery that multiple studios within Sony Computer Entertainment have undergone a thinning process lately, with multiple rounds of layoffs, and hiring has slowed down as well, with very few development-related career opportunity ads posted on SCEA’s and SCEE’s website.

Yet, it looks like Sony Computer Entertainment of America is now at the beginning of the upwards phase of the recruiting cycle again, and the company posted two new career opportunity ads seeking a recruiter and a recruiting coordinator.

Within the duties listed there is, of course, “Developing and administering staffing/employment/recruiting programs,” and it’s very interesting for two positions of this kind to be staffed at the same time, probably meaning that Sony either wants to restructure or expand its recruiting department.

Major Update: Col Rodgers posted on NeoGAF to correct Pete Dodd’s report of his departure from Sony Computer Entertainment and Evolution Studios. His post is reported below in its entirety. 

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Hello, all.

This is my first post on NeoGAF, and whilst I’m not generally one to deal in internet speculation, I have to put the record straight with regard to Pete Dodd’s comments above.

Everything he has said with regard to myself and Driveclub is incorrect. It’s also libellous.

As Putty (who is a personal friend of mine, and has been for about 25 years) suggests, I left Evo in February for personal reasons. The personal reasons being that my son, who is 4 years old, has been diagnosed with Nephrotic Syndrome, which is a potentially life threatening condition. I live 220 miles (4 hours drive) away from Evolution Studios, and was away from home 5.5 days a week. Given the circumstances, I could not continue to work there.

Driveclub is a great game, and the direction hasn’t changed since my departure. This has been confirmed by SONY in various press releases over recent days.

I have no problem in dealing with very large projects, as I’ve been working in the games industry for the last 19 years, and have worked on some very prestigious titles, so there is genuinely no truth to anything posted by Mr Dodds at all. My departure (and indeed the setup of my ‘indie’ operation, BigRedSwitch) is 100% driven by family necessity, not some professional failing on my part.

I left SONY on very good terms. There is no animosity there, and I was absolutely nothing to do with the recent redundancies – in fact, the news of those redundancies was probably linked on here before I knew about them.

The games industry is a tough place at the moment. My circumstances with my son mean that I’ve had to leave secure work in order to try to make my own way in the world. This may entail getting another job. With people who obviously know nothing about the situation blackening my reputation for the sake of internet ‘fame’, this could be made much more difficult. It’s nothing less than trolling.

I’ve contacted Mr. Dodd on his email address on his site. Due to the factual inaccuracy of his statements, I’ve informed him that he needs to remove the statements and apologise for the damage they have caused, as posting incorrect information and claiming it’s true is quite simply libel.

I’m sure you can all appreciate just how difficult things are for myself and my family at the moment. I’d genuinely appreciate it if you can take my statements as word from the origin, and realise that there has been no big cover-up when it comes to my departure from SONY/Evo.

Thanks, all.

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Pete Dodd himself apologized for the faulty reporting, and while the correct report by Rodgers matches the vision that there’s no big disruption at Sony Computer Entertainment we apologize ourselves to Mr. Rodgers and our readers for relaying incorrect information on Rodgers’ departure.

I have talked to Col Rodgers personally and his side of the story is vastly different than what I posted yesterday on gaf.

I apologize. I shouldn’t have gone there. Office gossip isn’t news. Col is a good and talented guy who left on his own accord.

The original statements by Dodd have been removed, as Rodgers’ take on the issue casts doubt on Dodd’s whole report. The rest of the article can be found below:

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Another industry insider, Ahsan Rasheed, also added his take on what’s happening at SCEE on Twitter.

What I can say is- Europe is having a reset button pushed and the entire spectrum from top to bottom is being reshuffled for efficiency.

The London Studio is known mostly for Singstar and various casual things, so I imagine things aren’t too surprising on that front.

On the other hand, NeoGAF user DemonNite, who is known to work at Sony, also mentioned that he isn’t worried.

Things change indeed. I’m not worried either and see things from the inside.

Update: there seems to be a discrepancy on Driveclub director Col Rodgers leaving the company, as mentioned by user Putty, that allegedly knows Rodgers personally. We included it below as there are almost always two or more sides to something as complex as someone leaving a company, depending on who you ask to:

Mort, Col Rodgers left Evo for personal reasons in Feb, he wasn’t pushed, he left on his own terms, and certainly wasn’t replaced and let go. I know this because he’s a friend of mine, so please be sure next time of the accuracy of your information.

While we should always take what is said by insiders with the proverbial grain of salt, the job opportunities posted today offer further solidity to Dodd’s post, as it’s quite evident that Sony Computer Entertainment is simply taking part in the natural cycle of layoffs and hiring.

It’s always disheartening to see people leave or lose their jobs, but people move around and it happens in every industry. Other industries simply don’t have hungry press hounding companies in order to create stories that often are made bigger than what they are.

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