5th May 2021

Staff Spotlight: Player Support in Manila

When players feel connected to something bigger than a single game, they become increasingly engaged and can act as loyal fans and advocates for publishers and developers.

This is where the teams at Keywords come in. At Keywords Player Support, we have the tools and the expertise to help keep players happy, whether that’s handling support tickets efficiently or growing communities on social media.­­­­

Recently, we spoke with two project managers working in our Manila office as they shared insights about their respective roles.

Francis Lenihan joined Keywords Studios in 2016 as Player Support Team Lead in 2016 and was promoted to Project Manager in 2020. It was a similar path for Gilbert Dela Cruz, who joined in 2017 and became Project Manager in 2020.

This is what they had to say:

What does a typical day at work involve?

Francis: Project managers are generally responsible for day-to-day operations for Player Support. I help ensure my team is working at optimal levels to meet client expectations. This means regular sync with team leads and clients, as well as agents, to ensure they have what they need to efficiently meet their goals.

Gilbert: I am responsible in driving the Player Support team’s performance, making sure that everyone is motivated and working at their full potential to deliver performance standards.

What do you love about your job and what have you discovered if anything?

Francis: I always enjoyed having a sense of progression in video games and I think I have projected this to the real world. I enjoy helping and seeing people under my wing grow in terms of skills and their roles.

I enjoy finding things to fix and making life better for everyone. I love seeing how these fixes help improve their quality of life, even if it’s just within our work space.

Gilbert: What I love about this role is that it allows you to be part of people’s success. It is great feeling when you see your team members step up to new challenges

What do you like best about working for Keywords Studios? 

Francis: The level of trust given to me to make my own decisions for all the projects I handled. Management allow my team and I the room to come up with solutions specific to our project’s needs.

They don’t lock us in a box to follow a blanket approach. I believe this is one of the major keys behind our projects’ success over the past four years.

Gilbert: I get to meet and work with people who have the same passion for gaming and customer service. And I like that the company creates an environment of trust.

Francis Lenihan and Gilbert Dela Cruz
Francis Lenihan and Gilbert Dela Cruz

What, in your opinion, are the key considerations for publishers and developers when hiring an external services vendor such as Keywords? 

Francis: Aside from the basics like workforce resources, site location, and overall cost – I think game devs go for companies who understand how to treat/support their player community. Companies who act as their partners in taking care of their players’ needs while helping their games evolve to better versions for success.

Gilbert: I see Vendors as the extension of Publishers and Developers’ internal team. It is important to select a vendor that can carry their vision and share the same passion growth. A vendor that they can work together with through the ever-changing demands of video games.

How did you get into video games? What inspired your career path? 

Francis: I started young with the family computer back in the 1990s and never lost interest in video games since. I worked for a gaming account back in another company and immediately realized how comfortable I was with the atmosphere.

I tried working for other companies to expand my knowledge and skills but it only took one text message from Keywords Studios in Manila to make me jump back to Player Support. As our company is game-centric, staying and growing here felt natural.

Gilbert: As a young kid, my brother and I received a video game console as a Christmas gift from our parents and I’ve been hooked to games ever since. My experience in customer service and love for gaming paved the way for me to land a fruitful career in video games.

What is your favourite video game and why?

Francis: Final Fantasy VII – PS1 – Simply because this was the first FF series, I was able to play. It introduced me to the world of Japanese RPGs, which have become my occasional escape from reality.

Gilbert: Super Mario Bros. 3  is my all-time favourite game – simply because I love retro games. It takes time to master it; I’m still in the process.

And finally, what advice would you give to job seekers considering a career in video games? 

Francis: Specifically, for people looking into joining a player support team – genuine interest in playing games and supporting fellow players will greatly help you enjoy your role.

Keywords has a great support system in place to help those who are just starting in the business get trained and acquainted, so they shouldn’t be afraid to vie for a post.

Gilbert: Be prepared. If you have the passion and have what it takes for a career in video games, go for it. Continuous improvement is the key; never stop challenging yourself to be better than your best.

If you are interested in a Player Support role at Keywords Studios, you can find current open positions on our Careers page.

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