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How to Get Hired as a Video Editor

How to Get Hired as a Video Editor

I was in Las Vegas, Nevada for the National Association of Broadcasters Conference, it's NAB, NAB. If you guys know anything about the photo or video gear, this is basically the convention where they like to unleash the new products, the latest software updates, anything that's exciting around media. We're standing in front of the Adobe booth because obviously, this article is all about video editing. I own a business, we are hiring people all the time, we're hiring a ton of editors and these are the things that I look for when I see an application come in as a video editor.


7 Skills you Need to get hired as a Video Editor



1. Does the editor understand the story?

It's great if you're a technical editor, you can work fast, that's obviously a plus but I want you guys to make good creative decisions. I wanna hand an edit off to you, I want you to know the pacing, I want you to know the flow, I want you to look at the script to understand the story. So fundamental, number one, understand the story as an editor and practice that. That's the biggest thing we look for when we're hiring an editor.


2. Organizational skills

The second biggest thing that we look for when we're hiring a video editor is do they have good organizational skills?

I'm talking when you have an edit and I open it, are things properly put into bins? Is the B-roll organized? Are things labeled? When I open the project files, going into all the folders, are the assets in the right area?

So having good organizational skills is key. Also, if we have a client that comes back a couple years later, they're like oh, can you update that edit? This happens all the time. I should be able to open up that project, look at it and truly understand what's in there because you've labeled everything properly. So organizational skills is huge.

Actually, on the note of organizational skills, Adobe's latest update for Premiere Pro has a freeform panel window which allows you to organize things in a more creative way. So if you're a creative thinker, you want to lay things out, you can like stack clips, you can find the hero shots which is good for the future if you're opening up and edit because it allows the person who's now re-editing that video or that photo to understand where things are.

How to Get Hired as a Video Editor

So go and check out that latest update and also make sure you guys have good organizational skills.


3. Pacing and flow

Does the person have a good understanding of pacing?
A lot of editors will just have a voiceover and kind of back-to-back words all smushed together, it's really quick and they're like, today's the product and we're gonna be talking about this product and we're doing this thing with the product, it's X, Y, and Z. It's too much, you gotta leave some space.

So an example would be like today we're talking about the product and then you leave some room for it and now they show the B-roll of the product. So having an understanding of this flow is extremely important so that's what I look for when you guys send examples to me when I want to hire you, or when someone else wants to hire you.

If you guys didn't already know this, also within Premiere Pro and Audition, they have a new feature called the auto-ducking feature which essentially is doing half of this work for you so if there's a voiceover it's lowering it and if you leave some breaks and some room for B-roll, it raises it up which is also good for vloggers but nonetheless if you have a good understanding of pacing, you're gonna get hired, this is the stuff we're looking for.

How to Get Hired as a Video Editor

Insight from someone who's a hirer.


4. Tasteful with transitions

Number one, I feel like it's pretty self-explanatory because it's very easy to add a lot of transitions to your clips, I don't wanna just be seeing luma fade, zoom transition, zoom transition for every single transition. It's cool when you guys have a bit of understanding of speed ramping and all these other effects. But one of the biggest things is understanding when and where to use them. Sometimes a simple cut is all that's necessary.

So yes, know these things, understand motion graphics so you can add little text pieces. Those things are good but don't overdo it because it actually looks bad. So yes, less is more sometimes.

And make sure that you're adding the right transitions for that particular project and what that client needs. So don't put zoom transitions in a corporate video, they're probably not gonna like that very much.


5. Making sure you deliver things on time

If you wanna get hired again, always, always deliver on time. That's probably my biggest pet peeve. If I get a text from the editor the night before at 11 and I'm sitting there watching a movie just enjoying myself, get a little text that's like, editor pops up and they're like, hey Swapee, I'm sorry this is taking a lot longer than I expected, can we push it back nine days? No, we're not gonna do that, editor. We're gonna lose that client if you end up doing that so please, make sure you guys deliver on time.


Pro tip

If you really want to impress your client or the person that you're working for or hired by, deliver it early, a few hours early, that'll make them super happy. That's what's gonna get you a job, woo!


6. Other programs

One of the other things that we really look for is somebody who has a brief understanding of a few of the other programs such as After Effects, Audition, maybe it's Photoshop, Lightroom. Yes, be specialized in your one area, but if you're a video editor, definitely understand Premiere, or whatever video platform that you're using, then the second one would be like After Effects, we really love when people have like motion graphics, they can add a few effects in there, the more that you know, the more value you can add to a company and you're gonna get hired more often because of that.


7. shortcuts

There are shortcuts to make you a faster editor, know them, understand them, study them so that you can create edits faster. The faster you can turn around things, the more in-demand that you'll be. The other side of it is that most of the time as a video editor, you're gonna get paid in a bulk rate versus hourly so the faster that you edit, the more money that you're gonna make per hour, also the more money that you'll make in total.

So shortcuts, learn those things, it's impressive. I don't want to see any drag-and-drop editors or drag-and-click editors, I don't wanna see that. I wanna see shortcuts.

Alright, guys, we're about to end the article right now but my last tip is just to care, get the updates, understand different things, get more knowledgeable, figure out the new trends in editing 'cause the more that you know, the more valuable you'll be to somebody that's hiring you, this is the stuff that we're looking for, we want somebody who really cares about the job and is gonna do a good job.

So on that note guys, that's the end of the article. If you found this article helpful make sure to share it with others and comment below, 

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