Auditions not being listened to

  • Stephen Small

    Voice Over:English

    I have to say, I'm starting to get a little irked at the fact that a lot of my auditions aren't even being listened to. Does anyone know why this is?

    I spend time to really get it right and make my application - I think that if they listen to it, I'm in with a good chance of getting this one... Then nothing. It doesn't get listened to.

    Is anyone else having this problem? Is there any way to rectify it?

    • 2nd Aug 2020
    • 1772
    • 26
  • Stephen Small

    Voice Over:English

    Hi editorial team, it isn't the play counter that is the (main) issue. It is the "date viewed" on my submissions box in my main feed.

    • 15th May 2020
    • 1
  • Rhys Jennings

    Voice Over:English

    Thanks for raising this concern Stephen. I've been feeling the same.

    I do appreciate that employers must be getting a helluva lot of submissions for each role at the moment, but I find I'm spending a significant chunk of my time recording and perfecting auditions, only for those files to never even be marked as viewed. If there were more jobs posted on Mandy, I might not care so much, but when there are already so few, it feels like a monumental waste of time. I'm recording an audiobook at the moment, so time spent in the booth in precious.

    Having worked in casting (albeit in Musical Theatre) in an ideal world, Mandy would be advising employers to only ask for a few lines in the first instance. A "first round" so to speak. From that, the employer would create a shortlist of which VOs they would like to hear a full demo reading from. That way, less people are wasting less of their time.

    Rehearsing, recording, mastering and delivering a 2 minute audition to a competitive standard every time (well, not EVERY time, but certainly pretty often) is tedious enough as it is, but when the files don't even get listened to, that is doubly irksome!

    • 15th May 2020
    • 2
  • Stephen Small

    Voice Over:English

    I totally agree, Rhys. A couple of lines would suffice. They only need enough to get a feel for your voice and don't need the entire script read. Perhaps Mandy should implement this?

    • 16th May 2020
    • 3
  • Jahmene Hastings

    Voice Over:English

    Hey guys, my opinion - for what it's worth (many might disagree), is never spend lots of time on auditions unless absolutely necessary or if the job is a big one (no jobs on sites like mandy are ever going to be big ones btw). It's just not worth the ROI, learn instead to perfect your workflow so an audition takes minutes, max.

    And once you've submitted it - completely forget about it and move on.

    • 19th May 2020
    • 4
  • Natalie Moore-Williams

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Hi, I only joined this site a few weeks ago and I feel completely the same, not one of my applications has been viewed?? Is this normal??

    • 19th May 2020
    • 5
  • Jane McIntyre

    Voice Over:English

    Hello everyone...this is an issue I raised recently with Mandy....who told me my profile/cover letters etc all looked good but didn't seem to have a real answer as to why in about ten days...I have a trail of auditions which have yet to be listened to. I don't spend forever on them...but my studio's good, and with a career in radio....I can record and edit at speed. I'm getting work on other sites....but something here isn't working. And maybe.....it's not justifying the cost of even being here. Thoughts welcome!

    • 19th May 2020
    • 6
  • Natalie Moore-Williams

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Hi Jane,

    I feel the same, most likely will cancel subscription as nothing being viewed.

    Are there other sites you would recommend?

    Thank you

    • 19th May 2020
    • 7
  • Jane McIntyre

    Voice Over:English

    Hi Natalie...they all have their good and bad points and many charge a fair bit more to sign up (particularly the U.S ones). Are you new to voiceovers, or just to this site? (Maybe I could send a private message, actually...!!!)

    • 19th May 2020
    • 8
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    It's the same all over guys.

    On other P2P sites, you can see how many auditions have been submitted. I received an audition notification email from one such site that I'm a member of and in the 20 mins it took me to record, edit and upload, 34 other auditions were already in. For another job that I didn't really think I'd fit and so didn't audition, out of curiosity, I checked it again several hours later and there were in excess of 200 auditions submitted!

    Even if you're able to be very selective for what you audition for, only go for those jobs where you're voice is a great match and record an excellent audition, as others have said, there's the issue of it not even getting heard.

    It's a tough business at the best of times, let alone the one we're all going through with the current crisis.

    Hang in there, keep safe and well.

    • 19th May 2020
    • 9
  • Jane McIntyre

    Voice Over:English

    Cheers Mike....yeh, I'm also signed up with a US agency (maybe the same one...?!) which virtually fires a starting pistol when it posts its ads. And even with my running spikes, a great studio, a (their assessment...) 90 or 100% suitability for the job and and the speedy kind of editing skills developed over years of cutting and reading BBC bulletins and breakfast shows.....I still find there are 50 ahead of me when I press 'send'.

    Your advice is good. These times are tough. More people chasing fewer jobs, and many potential employers offering MUCH lower fees than they should. (No, I don't apply for those, either...). We can just hope to stay well, read well, ride out the storm and emerge smiling and employed at the other side. Have a great day!

    • 20th May 2020
    • 10
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Thanks Jane.

    I know that agents are placing their clients into categories, prioritising those with ISDN, Source-Connect etc., as it's those VOs that'll take on what would've been the Pro studio gigs. And as you may know, while those are the higher paid VO jobs, they represent a much smaller percentage of the overall opportunities in the VO industry. So they're not plentiful at the best of times.

    I wouldn't be at all surprised if full-time VOs, who may have long since outgrown P2P sites, have flocked back during the crisis. Not to mention the many screen and theatre actors who've taken to VO while there's little to no filming going on and the theatres are closed.

    The number of auditions being submitted has definitely surged during lockdown. In fact, Bodalgo now have a banner across the audition page stating so, and urging VOs to only audition if they feel they're a good fit for the job!

    Not to say that anyone here isn't able to deliver an audition of the same quality as the people mentioned above. It's just that if a producer casting for a VO job receives 50 auditions and finds three voices they like in the first 20 auditions, it's "job done" (time is money) and they probably won't listen to the other 30, sadly, even if among them is one that blows the others away!

    Now, if today those 50 auditions have increased to 200, maybe that's why more of us aren't getting ours heard. I guess it's just the way it is at the moment and it'll pass.

    • 20th May 2020
    • 11
  • Brendan McCoy

    Voice Over:English

    Hey guys, I hope you're all keeping well. Auditions not being marked as listened to is a very old issue with Mandy's system, in fact it's been like that since it was VoicesPro back in the day, if my memory serves me. I never really worried about it to be honest, as early on in my first few weeks on the site, I was lucky enough to book a couple of jobs that were still listed as my demos not being viewed. Though considering the current climate I can totally see how it could be completely demoralising and frustrating, as unless it's fixed we'll never really no for sure if our hard work is being listened to at all.

    I completely agree the idea that we should send out our demos and then forget about them, as there's no point in stressing out about what might be or might have been, as that way can only leads to despair. This job can often feel like a bit of a numbers game, and in the past I too would have said the more stuff you apply for the more gigs you will book, but what with the current influx of people trying to get in on the game as well as everyone who already did some VO stuff trying to make it their main hustle rather than just a side hustle, I fear it's only going to get tougher for everyone... but try not to be disheartened. As the old saying goes, quality will out in the end!

    Stay safe and keep well everyone!

    • 21st May 2020
    • 12
  • David Sargent

    Voice Over:English

    Hi Everyone

    I just wanted to add my tuppence worth and say that I too am noticing a lot of submissions not being 'viewed'. This is particularly ill mannered if employers have asked applicants to record a piece of script rather than simply listen to our available reels. It becomes somewhat demotivating if we keep being sent alerts to appropriate jobs and then recording scripts etc for what? I'm not asking them to send me a cake. Just bother to listen to the applications they requested. I do hope this site is not simply a waste of professional time.

    • 26th May 2020
    • 13
  • Jane McIntyre

    Voice Over:English

    Cake would be lovely though, David ...!!

    • 26th May 2020
    • 14
  • Brendan McCoy

    Voice Over:English

    Haha, indeed! ...I do miss the cake trolley Wednesdays while recording at Media City :'(

    • 27th May 2020
    • 15
  • David Jacobs

    Voice Over:English

    "...never spend lots of time on auditions unless absolutely necessary or if the job is a big one (no jobs on sites like mandy are ever going to be big ones btw)...."

    - Jahmene Hastings

    Jahmene, I'm afraid I do disagree with you and here's why:

    Your advice is like saying 'go to a job interview with a lax attitude and not put as much effort into impressing people who could potentially have hired you because they probably will not hire you and you'd have wasted your time'. The idea of an audition is to give them a preview of what they could have if they DID hire you. Otherwise, they OBVIOUSLY won't consider you for a shortlist. They have to actually bother to click to hear what would be a 'less than professional' audition in the first place so might as well go all out in case they click to listen. THIS is where it gets frustrating. If they don't listen to it, yes your effort is for nothing, but if you don't do your best and they DO open it up, you would severely harm your chances of being hired. A self-fulfilling prophecy if you like.

    As for 'no big job ever appears on Mandy', I've found this claim to be inaccurate. Drummond Games for example (makers of Articulate!) had a posting on here for character voices for sponsorship linked adverts. Also, there was a job I auditioned for where the script I read sounded a lot like a recent advert for a similar product I saw on TV last week. There must be some high-profile postings on here but you wouldn't know them unless you opened their script to look.

    There is NO excuse for not listening to every application received. There's a severe lack of understanding from clients/companies about what it requires for VOs like you and me to deliver a finished script or polished audition. They don't appreciate the time required to edit and retake if needed. The ones who do not consider every application seem to have a delusion of thinking it's all magically done 'first time around'. A three minute script it may be, but they don't see the one hour work (possibly) needed to provide it. So to gloss over it and ignore is nothing short of unprofessional and discourteous, especially as they would require the utmost professionalism from employees and anyone who they liaise with in a business sense. The double standards of it is what annoys me the most. If I hand a job application in for ANY job and get interviewed, they expect me to be professional when meeting them/writing to them. Therefore I'd at least expect them to consider my application and get back to me, whether I'm successful or not! Rejection I can deal with, double standards I cannot.

    • 27th May 2020
    • 16
  • Jahmene Hastings

    Voice Over:English

    Hey David,

    This isn't a real-world job interview type situation - this is Mandy! completely different as you can see!

    I'm thinking you're kinda new to the game? (had a look on your profile quickly - correct me if I'm wrong)

    So yes, if you expect the same kind of courtesy on these sites as you'd expect in-person for a real-world permanent position then you're in for a world of heartache.

    It's not right by any means, but this is how it is at the moment unfortunately!

    More power to those who want to change the system btw - I just don't really have the time.

    which is why I said what I said and stick by it:

    One must learn to streamline the whole recording process so it's down to a fine art, so you can bash out great auditions in minutes with no reduction in quality! This is the only way to survive in the p2p gig economy game!

    And regarding my comment on "big jobs" - I don't mean in terms of profile I mean purely in terms of fee. Do you remember how much was the fee for that job? When I say big jobs I'm talking like 8-10k and above

    • 28th May 2020
    • 17
  • Clare Cunliffe

    Voice Over:English

    I came on here as I am doing the free trial at the moment and noticed that it said none of my files had been viewed even though I was listed as under consideration for a job I'd applied for. My profile has been viewed but it says the auditions I worked on haven't been! It is demoralising especially at a time like this. I'd been enjoying the experience of recording lots of auditions at first (I only set myself up with a home studio in January this year so the novelty is still there but I've found I haven't wanted to do anything this week with it since seeing the graph stats!) It doesn't help being in lockdown and looking after two children either.

    I did like the comment by David - I'm not asking for cake! Thank you that really cheered me up! This does seem like a good place for support and seeing others are experiencing the same as you on lockdown.

    • 28th May 2020
    • 18
  • David Jacobs

    Voice Over:English

    Hi Jahmene.

    Thanks for replying.

    Yes I may well be wet behind the ears having only been firing out auditions for around a year on the side of a full time job elsewhere. However, I don’t feel experience has a bearing on the right to expect courtesy from those I send auditions to. I’m not trying to suggest the ‘real world’ of jobs is the same as ‘VO’/‘online’ jobs. BUT what I AM trying to say is that I have every right to expect two-way courtesy between myself and the person I’m taking the time to record a clip for OR the employer I would send an application to and turn up for an interview for. The principle of communicating and not leaving someone in the dark SHOULD be better adhered to. Of course I know some don’t exhibit this and this is why I wanted to vent on here like so many others!

    I’m sure you could at least agree that the production company/client who would post on Mandy would never want THEIR time to be wasted, would they?

    To summarise, I’m aware this is just ‘the way it is’ and I do make sure I get as many scripts right first time but it doesn’t always happen as is human nature and I have a right to be unhappy about some job ad posters’ actions (or lack thereof) and expect the same courtesy that I would exhibit in my recordings and communications.

    • 28th May 2020
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