Saving Administrative Time To Focus On Finding New Talent

The NBCUniversal Talent Infusion Programs do important work to find the new, diverse, creative voices of tomorrow—while Submittable takes care of the logistics.

NBCUniversal Talent Infusion Programs (NBCU TIPS) is a division of NBCUniversal that provides wide-ranging opportunities to emerging talent in the field of entertainment. Thousands of applications mean mountains of moving parts, and Submittable helped them organize their filing, emailing, judging, scoring, and acceptance processes. 

Because we receive thousands of applications, every little task makes a big difference. Submittable has saved us time because of the way it’s organized and how intuitive it is—it has made our lives, and the lives of all our readers, so much easier.

Grace Moss

Director, NBCU Talent Development & Inclusion

Finding and supporting the next generation

Based in Los Angeles, NBCU TIPS facilitates fellowships, showcases, and workshops for NBCUniversal, designed to discover and nurture up-and-coming writers, directors, actors, and comedians. Its programming offers emerging talent opportunities for significant professional development within NBCUniversal and across the entertainment industry as a whole.

NBCU TIPS began using Submittable in 2017 to accommodate ever-increasing interest in their talent opportunities, each of which involves a careful evaluation process.

“Previously, reviewers would have to toggle back and forth between applications and review windows, or email scores to a coordinator separately,” says Director Grace Moss. “We wanted to find software that was more streamlined because with the volume of work we have, saving one or two extra steps is huge.”

Streamlining review and selection

Since adopting Submittable, NBCU TIPS has received more than 18,000 submissions for seven innovative programs: Writers on the Verge, The Emerging Directors Program, The Late Night Writers Workshop, Female Forward, The Alternative Directors Program, StandUp NBC, and The Casting Assistant Program.

Although the process varies by opportunity, many incorporate up to four review rounds. NBCU TIPS appreciated that Submittable was easily adaptable to their process.

“Structurally, our review process has stayed the same,” Grace says, “but with Submittable, it's just been a lot easier to facilitate, especially since we have so many external readers.”

 The NBCU TIPS Team and 2018 Writers on the Verge Participants

The NBCU TIPS Team and 2018 Writers on the Verge Participants

Viewing files, filtering applications, and sorting data with ease 

As of August 2020, NBCU TIPS oversees 182 individual reviewers using the software.

The team at NBCU TIPS has found Submittable especially helpful with its writing and directing programs, since the software allows them to immediately view a variety of file-types, including video, within the application rather than downloading them.

Submittable’s robust submission filtering has also proven useful. “The ability to sort, filter, and find specific talent has been extremely helpful—plus, the option to read, screen, and score within the application is great,” Grace says.

Making the most of each application cycle

Using Submittable has saved NBCU TIPS valuable time. Among six program administrators, the software spares each an hour per week, resulting in at least 280 hours recuperated per year. For reviewers, Submittable saves individuals at least 30 seconds per application.

As an example, during the 2018 Female Forward / Emerging Directors Program received 487 applications, each reviewed by an average of four people, saving NBCU TIPS at least 16 hours during this single initiative (only one of 10 talent applications administered in 2018).

NBCU TIPS uses these saved opportunities to focus on larger program goals, rather than administrative tasks. “This extra time,” Grace says, “can be put toward facilitating overlapping programs and initiatives, meeting with talent, planning panels, and reading scripts—basically it’s our time to do important work.”

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