Voice actors provide voice overs for informative videos, animated TV series, dubbed movies and audio files, and it is a job that has become a lot more available in recent years!
You no longer have to be part of a recording studio to find work, and there are thousands of freelance voice actors working daily all over the world.
However, to get work, you need a strong resume, and we are going to show you how to impress a hiring manager with your skills and experience. Don’t forget to check out our full resume sample at the bottom.
Resume objective for voice actors
When you are an artist, it is easy to think that your demo reel alone will be what gets you hired, and while this could be the case – an employer will likely also ask for a resume.
The resume gives a potential employer the opportunity to see who you are and how you have built up your career so far, but it is also a chance to see if you are someone they would enjoy working with. A great way to sum up everything that is great about you is by adding a resume objective.
If you can find a way to highlight your personality, voice over work experience, expertise using different voice techniques and your passion for doing voice overs, while still keeping it professional – then you are off to a great start.
We surveyed 20 voice over resumes, and while far from all included a resume objective, it appears to be an excellent way to rise above the competition when applying for a job as a voice actor.
According to Backstage Magazine, enthusiasm is one of the key traits in a voice actor, and throughout our research – this word kept coming up in the majority of the 15 real job posts sampled.
By coming off as enthusiastic in your resume objective, you show your future boss your excitement about potentially participating in the project. It is not necessary to add a resume objective, but it could help you stand out.
Experienced voice actor with a background in both screen- and stage acting. Native English and Spanish speaker, excellent with different accents, formally trained and with the ability to express a wide range of motions through voice. Passionate about arts and ready for new challenges.
Resume skills for voice actors
When listing skills on your voice-over resume, pause and think which skills are relevant for a job as a voice actor. Don’t waste resume space bragging about your yoga abilities or your swimming skills, as this won’t help you when recording voices and audio for film, TV and more.
Bring up if you have acting experience (screen or film), any language skills as this could make you eligible for more roles, if you have public speaking experience or know a thing or two about production.
You will most likely be including a demo reel in your job application when applying for work as a voice actor, but what else can you tell a hiring manager that would make it more likely they would hire you instead of someone else?
In the research conducted for this voice over resume guide, some of the resumes we sampled also mentioned additional skills like translation, copywriting and even script writing abilities.
A good voice actor can make approximately $17.50 per hour, according to the Art Career Project, and the best way to ensure a good salary is by showing that you are worth the money. This can be done by listing relevant skills on your resume – both those obtained through past work and others.
Make sure your future employer knows why they should hire you, and why they should pay you well for your work.
Experienced | Background in screen acting | Fluent in English, Spanish & French | Certified public speaker | Sound engineering experience | Excellent characterization | Tempo management | Script writing
Voice over work experience
The market for voice actors has changed significantly, and you no longer have to work for a huge production company to find work. Many voice actors gain experience freelancing and starting small, and then they work their way up to better gigs and higher pays.
The more work experience you have, the easier it will be to score a high-paying job. Having quality work samples is extremely important when you want to stand out as a voice actor, but employers also tend to want to know that you can be trusted in an actual work environment.
It is not the same to record voices for fun in your room, as it is to submit audio files to a paying customer, and your work experience can highlight that you know how to meet deadlines and fulfill commitments.
In the beginning of a voice actor career, many choose to volunteer their services, as this can boost your resume and get you your dream job.
An employer won’t ask how much you got paid for a job, so any relevant work experience is valuable.
Peter Dickson, who has lent his voice to successful shows like Britain’s Got Talent and X-Factor, points out how the demand for voice talent has grown in recent years, so now is the time to start applying.
When listing work experience for a voice talent resume, we are going to use a three-column format where we list the name of the company first, then the niche which the recording was destined for (TV, film, radio, etc. etc.), followed by where the project was aired or broadcasted.
Sample Work Experience
Nissan Dealership Radio WCBS-FM 101.1 NY
Peter & Son Law Firm Television NBC Channel 4
Cedar House Audio Audiobook Google Audiobooks
EA Games Video Game Global Distribution
Walt Disney Studios Animation Global Distribution
Dinner On the Go Radio WBIG-FM 100.3 D.C
Voice over education
As noted by Study.com, no formal education is required when you pursue work as a voice actor or voice talent. This means that you could, theoretically, wake up one day and decide to go into voice acting, but if you are just starting out – having a college degree could help you get hired.
It is, of course, great if you have studied something related to acting, media, marketing or technology, as this would show the hiring manager a certain level of field-related knowledge, especially if applying for a freelance job where you would be responsible for recording yourself.
However, this can easily be compensated for by taking courses related to voice-overs, so don’t worry if you did not go to university.
List your High School diploma if you lack university education, and leave the High School diploma out if you have higher academic degrees to display.
Kent State University, Kent, OH
Master of Music, 2018 – 2020
- Music Production, Technology, and Innovation
Kent State University, Kent, OH
Bachelor of Software Engineering, 2013 – 2017
- GPA: 4.0
Considering the low educational requirements for a voice over professional, it could be smart to include a course section where you can point the hiring manager towards your knowledge and expertise.
List courses in acting, software, audio engineering, and anything related to the specific job you are hoping to get. If the job is to dub the voice of a car salesman with a French accent – mention the french classes you took in college, as this shows you could probably do a pretty decent accent.
When choosing which courses to list, it is all about being smart and adapting to the content of the work description. Consider what is required to do a really good voice over for that specific project, and adapt the coursework you list accordingly. If you didn’t take any relevant courses – omit this section.
- Be a Voice Actor: Making a Living with Your Voice
- Voice Training: 30-Days to a More Confident Powerful Voice
- The Complete Audiobook Production and Narration Course
- Edge Studio Training
- Voice Over Acting – Instruction in Commercials, Animation & More
- Public Speaking Class
As a voice actor, you don’t need to worry about certifications unless you believe it could help you get a job. If your demo reel speaks for itself and if you have a strong work experience section to impress with – certifications aren’t generally required by companies hiring.
In our research, none of the job posts we sampled requested any type of certifications or licenses, and while there are a few voice acting certificates to be found online, these are usually just a way to show you have completed a course, and do not fill an actual function.
Taking courses is great as these will prepare you for a career in voice acting, marketing yourself and more, and if they lead to certification – great! But it is not required to be certified or licensed when applying for work.
- Voice Acting Certificate
Complete voice over resume sample
Have a look at how we are going to use the job posting below to write the ideal resume for the position. You can get plenty of useful information from scrutinizing the job description, so that you can send in a resume tailored to the specific needs of the company or person hiring.
The key thing here is that you need to speak Japanese, and preferably have previous work experience, even though it is not a requirement. The only other requirement, besides language skills, is to have the equipment needed to record quality audio.
Voice Over Actor
Dedicated voice actor with access to top-notch recording equipment and sound-proofed home studio. Fluent in English and Japanese, able to do accents in both languages and willing to adapt to the needs and requirements of the client.
Multitasker | Problem-solver | English & Japanese | Ability to do accents | 3+ years of professional experience | B.A in Sound Engineering | TV & Radio experience | Top recording equipment | Home studio
Nivea Skin Care Television NBCUniversal
Volvo Autos Television PBS
Oak Travel Agency Television The CW
Warner Brothers Feature Film Global Distribution
Forever 21 Radio WHTZ-FM Z100
Point Blank Music School, London, ENGLAND
Bachelor in Music Production and Sound Engineering, 2014 – 2017
- GPA: 3.5
- 12-Week Intensive Acting Program
- Voice Acting and how to master the art of Reading Aloud
- Acting MASTERCLASS: Be a Working Actor and Book Auditions
- Recording Your Own Music: A Step-By-Step Guide for Musicians
One thing that is so great about a career as a voice over professional or a voice actor, is that you can often work from home! The first step, however, is to get your dream job, which can be achieved by applying with a top-notch resume that stands out.
These are the key takeaways of our research, and what you should keep in mind as you craft your next job application.
- The work experience is listed a little differently for a voice actor than what you might be used to, and you don’t necessarily have to include dates as it can end up looking somewhat spotty.
- Voice actors will usually have a demo reel to go with their resume, but this does not mean you should underestimate the importance a resume may have in the hiring process. Use it as an opportunity to demonstrate your skills, strengths and professional aspirations.
- No certification is required to legally work as a voice actor, but it is recommendable to take applicable coursework, to learn about the business and how you can market yourself. Listing courses can look great on a voice over resume.
Tips from Experts
“The only thing that is on the page is what the client, the agent or the manager needs to know. Who you are and how to contact you.” – Timothy Banfield, Voice Actor and Blogger
“So, you have your gear, you have your demo, now – how do you start to grow and build on that momentum? And you want to invest in your education. You want to look for acting classes, you want to look for a dialect coach, you want to learn how to grow business-wise, because being a business person is just as important as being an artist, and especially today.” – Nastasia Marquez, Established Voice actor
“The first thing is to look as professional as possible. There is lots of experience you’ve got that you need to highlight. Be positive and confident about what you do.” – Gary Terzza, Voice Over Coach
Working as a voice actor is challenging and exciting all at once, and the demand has increased significantly in recent years, possibly as a result of technology making it so much easier to find the right person.
You can work out of an office or work from home, depending on what your employer prefers, and few things compare to hearing your own voice coming out of the mouth of an animated character, or narrating a TV commercial.
When you write your voice-over resume, make sure you focus on your skills and experience, as this is what most employers tend to look at first.