Christopher joined the games industry in the early 90s when game development was still lean and mean. After working on localization projects publishing major US games in Germany, Christopher moved to game programming for the following years working in several programming roles on various PC and console platforms. For the last decade Chris was working in game production, managing development projects both from developer, as well as from publisher sides. Joining Ubisoft in 2007 he is now serving as Director of Product Development for Ubisoft Blue Byte in Germany overseeing the development unit comprised of more than 280 team mates in 3 different locations working on projects on PC, Browser, Tablet, Mobile and Console. As such, he is in charge of all game development projects at Blue Byte. Chris holds a MBA degree from Liverpool John Moores University in the UK and is a frequent speaker at various international developers conferences like GDC San Francisco, GDC Online and GDC Europe as well as he is lecturing at Universities like MDH and Filmakademie.
Talk - From a small team to a large development studio
Scaling an organization is always a challenging undertaking, and often causes a lot of growing pains. Ubisoft Blue Byte has grown from about 30 employees, six years ago, to more than 350 as of today, and continues to get bigger. This talk covers the growth strategy, the findings, mistakes, and pitfalls we have encountered. We explain how we implemented the growth, ensuring that we have a scalable organization. Christopher Schmitz will explain the processes that needed to be changed, and the way growth affected our company culture, moving from a family-like work atmosphere to more of a corporate environment.