Working as a Subtitler

By Chiara Grassilli
In Getting Started
Jul 21st, 2014

4 Tips To Start Working as a Subtitler


Subtitling is a fascinating career option to pursue, but if you decided to start working as a subtitler with no skills and no plans, then you may find yourself at a loss. How to acquire the right skills? Where do you start finding subtitling jobs? What things can you do to boost your new career? If you stick to your goal and follow the tips in this article, you could be subtitling in no time.

1. Acquire the right skills

Subtitling require a specific skill set. You’ll need to learn how to use the software to subtitle, how to condense a long conversation into a few words that still convey the meaning to the viewer, how to time the subtitles properly and much more. I know it seems daunting, and you’re probably thinking you don’t have the money for a degree or a master’s in subtitling, but don’t worry: you can learn all the skills you need with an online course such as the ones you’ll find on GoSub. is a platform where you’ll be able to choose among different subtitling courses according to your entry level and in a few weeks you’ll have all the skills you need to start working as a subtitler. Now it’s time to look for subtitling jobs.


2. Find subtitling jobs on Social Media

Subtitling is an interesting line of work to be in and you might find that it is hard to find work. You should start off by using the free resources that are available to you, especially social media. Setting up LinkedIn and Twitter profiles and starting to connect to other subtitlers will give you a huge advantage, especially when it comes to interlingual subtitling. The reason for this is that a connection of yours may specialize in translating French to English and you might be a German to English translator. Then, if your connection’s company or one that they know of needs a German to English subtitler, they can refer you without worrying about competition.

Social media is also useful to find actual vacancies. LinkedIn is a huge database. It’s free, reliable and constantly update with real, good quality vacancies.

See here the latest vacancies for subtitling jobs on LinkedIn.


3. Find subtitling jobs with Subtitling Companies

Another place where you can look for work are translation and subtitling companies. You can check out places such as Media Lingo and Ericsson. Those are just two companies among many that have subtitling positions.

On these companies’ blogs you can also find some useful information about working as a subtitler, such as these articles that I found on the Ericsson blog:

What does it take to be a subtitler

or “Three popular myths about subtitling

If you find a company that you’d like to work for but they don’t have any job openings, consider emailing them a copy of your resume and tell them that you are interested in any positions that open up. If working for a company isn’t your preferred path, you can also work as a freelance subtitler. In this case you can connect with them via LinkedIn and try to start a collaboration on a freelance bases.

Make sure to have your own webpage to promote yourself or your company and check out the various Internet freelance companies that you could work through, for example Upwork.


4. Start working a subtitler on Upwork (formerly oDesk)

Upwork, a company formerly called oDesk, is a marketplace for small jobs. Here you can find people who need small subtitle jobs. Because they’re normally quite small tasks, it’s a good way to start working as a subtitler.

You’ll find people asking gigs as this:

“I have a 3-minute German video that I need subtitled, so the result should be a *.srt file with the German subtitles”

or again

“I need a native English speaker to create SRT files for me to upload with my video courses. I will give you access to the video courses, and you can send me the SRT files in English. The videos are presented in English. I would like to pay $10 per video, and I have hundreds of videos that need subtitles.”

As you see you’ll not make a lot of money for each task, but it’ll give you the necessary experience to start working as a subtitler.

Click here to see the current subtitling jobs requested on Upwork.


Other places to look for subtitling jobs

TranslatorThoughts partnered with the job board ZipRecruiter, and we can now offer you a platform where you can look for subtitling jobs with a click.

Furthermore, keep in mind that most companies will post online when they need a subtitler, so it is wise to frequently check online for work you could do, with company like GoLocalizeGlocalmedia or, a portal for all language related jobs.

You should find television and media companies that you’d be interested in working for and see if they have any current needs for subtitlers. If they don’t, email them and offer your services. Doing this will let them know that you’re eager should they need a subtitler. You could also contact companies that you feel need subtitling work done. Whatever you do, stay positive and stay on top of your search. Eventually, you’ll find someone that will want to hire you.


The most important thing to do when searching for a job is to stay focused on your goal. You should keep up with companies you’d like to work for and also check out websites that list job offers. Maintaining a presence in social media is also crucial to your career, especially for a subtitler. Don’t hesitate to try and make contacts and build up your network. Doing things like this will guarantee your growth of clientele. Why waste another second? Start pursuing your new career today!



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About "" Has 117 Posts

Since an early age I have been passionate about languages. I hold a Master's degree in Translation and Interpreting, and I have worked as a freelance translator for several years. I specialize in Marketing, Digital Marketing, Web and Social Media. I love blogging and I also run the blog

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