With the rapid rise of video content over the past couple of years, there is one job that is in high demand in 2023: video editor.
From big marketing agencies to content creators, people constantly look for skilled editors to handle their videos and give them a unique feel.
But what does a video editor actually do?
What sort of responsibilities do they have, and how much do they earn on a yearly basis?
In this article, we will answer all these questions and more.
By the end, you’ll hopefully know everything there is to know about being a video editor, and who knows, you might want to become one yourself!
What does a video editor actually do? ✂️🎞️
A video editor’s job is to edit and assemble the raw footage according to the plan set by the video marketing manager and the video producer. Apart from cutting up the footage, they also need to add music and/or sound effects, graphics, transitions, and other special effects.
The video editor is the one who turns a script, a storyboard, and hours of footage into an engaging, high-quality video that’s exciting to watch. Their most important goal is to maintain the viewer’s attention.
Video editor job description template 📄✍️
If want to get into video editing or are looking to hire an editor, this is what you need to pay attention to:
We are looking for an experienced Video Editor to join our team! As a Video Editor, you will be responsible for editing recorded material into long and short-form videos meant for product launches, marketing campaigns, and other initiatives.
Video Editor responsibilities:
- Follow the brand guidelines to edit videos that match our visual identity
- Follow the storyboard given by the video producer and video specialist
- Use appropriate audio in each video from our library or trusted third parties
- Work closely with the production team so that the videos look according to plan
- Create concept boards for each project
Video Editor requirements:
- 3+ years experience in video editing, video production, or other similar fields
- Bachelor’s degree in film, media studies, marketing, technology, or other related fields
- Ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
- Proficiency in using Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects, and other video editing software
- A portfolio showcasing previous work
- Creative, proactive, and an excellent communicator
- Open to feedback
Note: Depending on the employer, you might find more or fewer responsibilities and/or requirements than the ones we listed above.
Who does the video editor answer to – role hierarchy 🤔
The video editor’s responsibility is to edit the video according to the video producer’s vision. As such, they report to the latter. However, every company structure is different so this can differ according to the team size and type of work they do.
Video editor job requirements 🧐
When it comes to video editing, one would think that having an eye for details and knowing how to use Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, and Adobe After Effects is the only requirement—in reality, that’s only the first on a long list of hard and soft skills you need to master.
- You must understand storytelling. Familiarize yourself with different narrative structures, timelines, and pacing. If the video doesn’t flow well or gets boring midway, do you know what you can do to fix it?
- You also need a good understanding of motion graphics and special effects. While these two are typically handled by the animators, motion graphics designers, and special effects artists in the team, you still want to learn as much as you can about them.
- Learning about the jobs and responsibilities of the other team members helps you understand their creative process better, which will allow you to work more seamlessly as a team. You’ll be able to have a much clearer vision of the final product, which will help you edit accordingly—this means fewer revisions and less stretched deadlines.
- Ensure you’re aware of the best resources for stock footage and stock music. Even if the employer you’re working with offers a list of resources you can turn to, it’s better if you have your own list that inspires you creatively and doesn’t get you in trouble with the copyright lords.
- Don’t be afraid to introduce these sources to the employer and the rest of the team, either. The more you can do to help, the better the video will come out. And the team will like you more, as well.
- Speaking of introducing resources, being a good communicator and an even better listener is the most important soft skill a video editor needs. You want to be able to give ideas and input in a clear and concise way but also take feedback with grace.
- In case your ideas clash with the producer’s or anyone else on the team, you need to be able to work through the situation professionally and respectfully. By doing this, you will demonstrate that you’re a team player.
- Another soft skill you want to brush up on is time management and multitasking. Production schedules often change due to various factors, so you want to be prepared for that.
- If there is a delay, you have to ensure you have a plan for it. Are you going to slow down as well? Will you take up a different project in the meantime, and if so, are you able to tackle them both at the same time? If the opposite happens and you need to complete the editing earlier, can you do that without sacrificing the quality of your work.
How much does a video editor make – video editor salary range 💰
To find out the average yearly salary for a video editor, we gathered the most recent data from the January 2023 reports of three reliable sources: Glassdoor, PayScale, and Indeed.
Below is a breakdown of the average salary available on all three platforms for four different locations: the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
|Location||Average Yearly Salary for Video Editor|
|Average Yearly Salary for Video Editor|
|Average Yearly Salary for Video Editor|
|United States||54,946 USD/yr||50,462 USD/yr||47,920 USD/yr|
|Canada||51,999 CAD/yr||48,601 CAD/yr||50,329 CAD/yr|
|United Kingdom||29,749 GBP/yr||25,245 GBP/yr||27,993 GBP/yr|
|Australia||65,000 AUD/yr||55,819 AUD/yr||62,503 AUD/yr|
Of the three platforms we looked at, Glassdoor is the most optimistic one, estimating that a video editor in the US makes around 54K USD per year. Indeed, however, says that it’s only 47K USD annually.
When it comes to Canada, PayScale is the most pessimistic platform. According to their calculations, a video editor in Canada makes only 48, 601 CAD in a year, as opposed to Glassdoor, which points at almost 52K CAD per year.
PayScale is once again the most pessimistic one when it comes to the average salary for a video editor in the UK. Its data suggests that one can only make 25,245 GBP in a year, as opposed to Glassdoor and Indeed, which estimate more than 27K GBP.
In the case of Australia, Glassdoor and Indeed show roughly the same numbers. Both platforms suggest that the average video editor salary is more than 61K per year, while PayScale shows only 55K AUD.
Typical employers of video editors 🏢
Marketing agencies are always looking for skilled video editors who can deliver content fast. Since they take up a wide variety of clients, you will be able to edit anything from 5-second TikToks to long-form YouTube tutorials and demos.
Video production agencies also tend to work with various clients, but they do tend to specialize in a certain types of videos. So for example, if you join an agency that specializes in 3D animates explainer videos, these are the types of projects you will be working with. It’s a great opportunity for you to really dive deep into one or two kinds of videos and maybe even find your niche.
Production companies have a large roster of content they want to publish and a video editor who can edit fast is key. You might get a lot of work but they will help you gain experience and allow you to brush up on important soft skills like time management and multitasking.
YouTubers often look for editors to help them keep up with their workload. They usually announce video editor job openings on social media, so if you’re good at a particular style of videos or are interested in future collaborations with some creators, make sure you press that follow button.
Where can you find video editor jobs? 📍
Whether we’re talking about YouTube channels or big broadcasting companies, they’re almost always looking for a skilled editor to help them out. You shouldn’t have a hard time finding freelance video editor jobs on Upwork.
You will also find various companies hiring video editors on Glassdoor.
Indeed also has all sorts of video editor work opportunities on its platform for all levels of experience, from entry to expert.
If you’re interested in even more options, LinkedIn’s advanced filtering helps you find video editing jobs that match your skills and preferences.
Video editors you can learn from ☑️
An editing software isn’t worth the investment if you don’t know what you’re doing.
In order to learn the art of video editing, we included a list of other professional video editors you can start taking notes from:
Oakley is a filmmaker who mainly focuses on documentaries. Her articles at No Film School are incredible lessons on editing, directing, and shooting movies and/or videos.
He is a senior video editor and 2nd Try LLC. You will see a lot of her work on the Try Guys YouTube channel. Some of her most successful videos include various episodes of the channel’s hit show Without A Recipe. On her own channel, she even posts behind-the-scenes videos where she goes through each episode she edited and explains her techniques and ideas.
Jordan is a professional video editor who worked on several music videos for artists like Justin Bieber, Tyga, Harloe, and more. He also edited commercials from big brands such as Nike and documentaries. On his YouTube channel, Jordan reacts to different types of music videos and goes through the techniques he notices, explaining how to achieve them and what the effects are.
Every video production team needs an editor. Without them, there would be no videos in the first place, just a bunch of hour-long uncut footage that most people will not be interested in watching.
You can say that the editor bridges the gap between the production and the audience.
Whether you’re looking to become a video editor or wish to hire one, rest assured that their job makes a difference.
Video Editor FAQ
To be a video editor, you need to have a good understanding of video editing software and techniques, as well as a strong sense of storytelling and attention to detail. It’s also important to have strong communication and collaboration skills when working with clients or a team.
The duties and responsibilities of a video editor typically include reviewing and selecting footage, assembling raw footage into a finished product, adding audio and visual effects, ensuring the video follows a particular style or format, collaborating with other team members, and delivering the final product to clients or stakeholders. Additionally, a video editor may be responsible for managing and organizing media assets, staying up to date with new editing techniques and software, and troubleshooting technical issues that arise during the editing process.
The salary of a video editor can vary depending on factors such as their level of experience, location, industry, and employer. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for film and video editors in the United States was $62,650 as of May 2020. However, video editors with specialized skills or working in high-paying industries like motion picture and video production can earn significantly more.