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Advice on leaving audio job
Old 9th September 2019
Here for the gear

Advice on leaving audio job

Hey guys,

Just looking for a little advice on possibly leaving my audio job. I currently work at a post audio place mainly doing VO for animation and video dames, ADR, and dubbing. I am happy with being an audio engineer, I like the work, I don't mind working long hours. However, my work lately has been getting busier and busier. We keep taking on these dubbing projects that are transcribed terribly. Mostly very broken English, and during the sessions we have to constantly rewrite lines with the talent in the booth. And when I say we it is only me the engineer in the booth and the voice talent. They don't want to pay the extra money for a voice director. The timecodes for cues that are given are also never on, they could be anywhere from 10-20 seconds off. They also do not cue all the stuff they want while dubbing, which includes effort type things such as breathes, laughs, efforts, etc. Even though none of these things are cue'd we are expected to find them during the session and grab them with the actor. Along with that they only pay a for a very limited time with each actor, which in most cases it is hard enough to finish all of the lines that our cue'd and are only able really to get one take of each cue. And a lot of times the client comes back asking why did we miss this stuff. Also should mention 90% of the time we get these scripts for cueing an hour before the session.

More and more projects are becoming like this. Most sessions I find myself playing many roles as director, script cordinator, writer. My current employer knows of these issues but doesn't seem to resolve them or contact the company we are dubbing for to ask for better materials to prepare for the session.

This is just one of the many issues currently. More issues also include sessions booked backed to back when rooms need to be dramatically changed over. Not receiving information to smoothly run a session. Hiring help with no audio experience.

Is this becoming a normal thing? Does anyone else have experience with this?

Also is quitting without currently having another audio job lined up a bad idea?
Old 9th September 2019
Lives for gear
Jeff Hayat's Avatar

Originally Posted by echoj88 View Post
is quitting without currently having another audio job lined up a bad idea?
Well, quitting without currently having another job lined up CAN be a bad idea... depending on your situation.

It almost sounds as if you just don't want to do it anymore. Or at least, put up with the BS. Which, from the way you make things sound, is understandable.

Have you thought of starting your own co.? Anyone you know who you can contact that might be in with you, either as a partner(s), or potential freelance employees? Anyone you know willing to invest some money? You can start off small, and build from there. Something worth at least considering.

Have you asked your boss for a raise? Like, a HUGE one. One you almost know he would say no to, but on the off chance you can get it, one that would make putting up with the BS a lot easier? If you do ask, be prepared to leave, so you can tell him that you want x-$, or you're outta there. But you HAVE to leave if he says no, otherwise you look like a chickenshlt, and he will walk all over you for the entire time you remain there. So, choose wisely there, and think before you do anything.

Old 9th September 2019
Lives for gear
AfterViewer's Avatar

Hang tough and become a specialist in sifting thru the sand to get your product. See if you can steer most of the monotonous stuff to someone hired with little or no experience. That could make it survivable, maybe.
Old 10th September 2019
Here for the gear
Dub til ya drop's Avatar
Originally Posted by the OP
Also is quitting without currently having another audio job lined up a bad idea?
Been there, done that....and I advise very strongly:


I used to be a staff member at one of Europe's largest broadcasting organisations. Over the years the dream job turned into a nightmare. I eventually snapped (slammed my keys down on the boss's desk after a 40 hour continuous session without even a scheduled weewee break).

For the first couple of weeks I felt fantastic, it was a real catharsis just not being there. Then as the weeks turned to months and we could only just pay the mortgage on my wife's meagre salary I had to find another job.

It was further away, and in a Facilities House, but hey I was in work. And guess what? It turned out to be even worse than before. I Lasted all of 3 weeks, then apologised for wasting their time and left.

A few months later, after ringing round all my mates, I secured another job - even further away than the last, and in an even smaller company. They used to be a famous London music studio, but had turned to editing & dubbing to survive. And wadda ya know, even crappier than the last one. Well that lasted 3 months.

It slowly dawned on me that doing Audio for Post had gone down the toilet. All the working practices and quality that I'd loved in the early days had melted away.

My big beef is that productions ALWAYS underbook, because they don't want to pay for time they don't use. More often than not your 12 hour booking bloats out into a 16-20 hour day.

As you are finding, Editors don't employ assistants to prep the tracks, so you're rushing around in the dub doing tracklaying, foleys, and fixing things that haven't been allowed for in the schedule.

Another issue, which I've seen several people mention on here is loneliness. Often Production can't be bothered to come to the dub, they just hand you the parts at the start of the day together with a list of instructions, and send a Runner back at the end of the day to collect the finished job. So you're working under alot of time pressure, in virtual solitary confinement.

This is a crap way to carry on, and I have seen 2 colleagues develop mental health issues.

I ended up despising the people i worked for, and worse still I hated mixing.

So I stopped doing audio as my main career. Now I only do it when I want to. I can pick and choose who I work for, and don't have to worry about the money.

My unrelated day job is a 4-day week with fixed hours, pays very well, has a fantastic pension, and I see human beings regularly.

So I've found a way of having my cake and eating it. I love being behind the desk again. I guess that without intending to, I've become my own boss.

It all turned out fine in the end, but I strongly advise you not to just chuck it in - sort out a new job before you quit the old one.

Keep the faith, bro.

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