Lead User Researcher
Cambridge / Remote /
Quality Assurance – User Research /
Frontier is an established, market leading independent developer and publisher of videogames for PC and consoles. Founded in 1994, we are based in the world-leading technology cluster and historic city of Cambridge, England. With a growing team of over 750 talented people, we are passionate about creating innovative genre-leading games and authentic worlds for our communities of players.
We have achieved serial successes across a wide variety of titles including Elite Dangerous, Planet Coaster, Jurassic World Evolution and Planet Zoo. We are continuing to grow our team to support our existing portfolio and an exciting and ambitious future roadmap, which includes the development of both own-IP titles and licensed-IP titles. Our IP-license partners include Universal (Jurassic World), Formula 1 and Games Workshop (Warhammer).We are also growing our team to continue the expansion of Frontier Foundry, our publishing label for games developed by carefully selected partner studios.
We have a modern spacious studio located on the Cambridge Science Park in the heart of the Cambridge tech hub. For those who wish to relocate to the Cambridge area and work either entirely in the studio or flexibly between the studio and home, we can provide generous financial and practical support to facilitate your move. We are also able to offer remote working for those who would prefer to work almost exclusively from home or who are unable to relocate. We can discuss your preferences with you during the recruitment process.
Purpose of the role
In this role, you will positively impact our titles by providing actionable insights that will help shape our games throughout the development process. You will work closely with the development teams to plan and execute research, test concepts, run playtests, and transform data into meaningful insights about user perceptions, sentiment, and actions. You'll create persuasive reports and visualisations to demonstrate opportunities to improve the player experience.
Frontier’s User Research team is a new and growing team, and we’re looking for an individual who is motivated by the challenge of helping to improve, grow, and lead the team going forward. We’re very keen to expand upon our existing UR services for both our internally developed and externally developed Frontier Foundry projects, and the successful candidate will work across a variety of game genres and with external and internal teams.
This position will require strong quantitative research and visualisation skills, in addition to qualitative skills. You will partner with various teams across Frontier to tackle a wide range of research objectives. Be prepared to evangelise UR, collaborating with your fellow researchers, producers, and designers. If you’re an advocate for excellent player experiences, passionate about gaming, you may be the ideal candidate to lead Frontier’s User Research team!
- Collaborate with game development teams to identify research opportunities and create comprehensive research plans to inform the team’s decisions, on time and on budget
- Own the research process by designing and conducting research studies using a variety of research methods – including but not limited to surveys, focus groups, usability testing, playtesting, expert analysis etc to effectively embed user feedback and player-centric design philosophy into their development processes
- Choose and define appropriate metrics that reflect the quality of user experience as well as the impact of design changes and meaningful, impactful insights about players
- Effectively communicate methodologies and results through powerful visualizations and concise reports, focusing on actionable recommendations
- Spearhead initiatives to craft new and evolve existing research methods and processes by staying up-to-date with innovations in the industry. Explore new tools and process improvements to constantly improve how the User Research team functions and delivers value, including applying continuous improvement of yourself through training, writing, and evaluating video game UX
- Help promote a culture of research with the wider development team
- Act as a coach and mentor, as well as leading other researchers toward innovative and creative thinking when approaching research challenges.
- Previous demonstrable experience working in User Research within games
- A degree in Human Factors, Human Computer Interaction, Cognitive Psychology, Cognitive Science, or other related field
- Strong influencing skills, with ability to convince stakeholders of the merits of your proposals
- A robust understanding of industry-standard methods including ethnographic methods (e.g. in-depth interview, group interviews), evaluative methods (e.g. concept testing, in-lab/remote usability testing, tree testing, etc.), and quantitative methods (surveys, behavioural analytics, etc.) and best practices to craft actionable and unbiased recommendations.
- Good negotiation and communication skills, able to work well with cross-functional teams – e.g. game designers, producers, marketing etc
- Curious and creative; enjoy complex issues and problem solving
- Experience with creating a User Research team from the ground up
- A postgraduate (Masters or PhD) degree in Human Factors, Human Computer Interaction, Cognitive Psychology, Cognitive Science, or related field
- Ability to demonstrate evidence of UR contributions on a shipped title
- Good understanding of statistics and analytics.
What we can offer you
We offer the chance to work with talented and passionate people, developing and publishing sophisticated and enduring games in a creative and collaborative environment. We love what we do, and we work hard to provide outstanding experiences for our player communities. Frontier rewards this passion and determination by sharing in the company’s success and by supporting our teams to keep doing what they love.
Well-being is a big focus at Frontier and we are continually evolving how we can support our staff. We encourage a healthy work/life balance and host a range of well-being activities, initiatives and sessions to support both mental and physical health.
We offer a competitive salary and benefits package, which includes a success-based annual bonus, share option schemes, pension, life assurance, private family healthcare, flexitime working hours, enhanced maternity/paternity package, in-house subsidised catering, support with relocation, a Cycle to Work scheme and free bike servicing, and social events.
We welcome and encourage applications from qualified candidates regardless of sex, race, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, religion or belief.