• Retail Shop Associate at the Schomburg Center (Hourly)

    Location US-NY-Manhattan
    Job ID
    # of Openings Remaining
    SCD Schomburg Administration
  • Overview

    The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture is one of the world's leading research facilities devoted to the preservation of materials on the global African and African diasporan experiences. A focal point of Harlem's cultural life, the Center also functions as the national research library in the field, providing free access to its wide-ranging collections, programs and events that illuminate and illustrate the richness of black history and culture.


    The Schomburg Shop is an emporium for products related to the global Black experience, the Schomburg Shop has many items ranging from classic and contemporary books for adults and children, unique gifts, and an exclusive collaborations and products designed for the Schomburg Center.  Like the Schomburg Center, named a National Historic Landmark in 2017, the shop's selections are chosen to inspire learning and advance knowledge, providing a distinctive shopping destination online and in-person.

    The Schomburg Retail Shop seeks a Retail Associate who will serve as a vital member of the sales team greeting and engaging Schomburg visitors for the purpose of sharing information about the Center, selling books, merchandise and memberships.

    Principal Responsibilities

    Under the supervision of the Manager & Creative Coordinator of the Schomburg Shop, the Retail Associate will:

    • Effectively engage visitors to the store and assist with their merchandise selections and actively suggest the pairing of other items to maximize sales
    • Conduct POS transactions for merchandise and membership sales
    • Use the sales floor as primary space to greet and assist customers; limit time spent behind the counter, when appropriate
    • Learn the depth and breadth of the merchandise carried in the store so as to effectively suggest items for sale
    • Ensure that merchandise displays are always fresh and clean by daily re-stocking and dusting the shelves, cabinetry and products
    • Educate Schomburg visitors about the Center by informing them on current exhibitions, programs, services , membership, store sales, etc.
    • Assist with special orders in-person, over the phone, and from the online store; maintain accurate knowledge of shipping policies and procedures
    • Assist with annual inventory count, and setting up for special sales and events
    • Efficiently prepare store for daily opening and closing; count cash drawers, ensure POS equipment is properly working, and replenish back stock of product and supplies
    • Maintain a working knowledge of various aspects of the point of sale (POS) system as well as current promotions to maintain inventory accuracy; maintain a neat and orderly POS station; reconcile and create deposits, and produce reports as necessary
    • Make book recommendations for customers, based on their interests or requests
    • Decide which are viable vendor candidates that walk-in to The Shop, and which to not escalate to management
    • Decide, at times, how to merchandise books for an event or program
    • Handle other duties as requested by management

    Required Education & Experience

    • High school Diploma or GED is required; college coursework or college degree is preferred

    Minimum Qualifications

    • Outstanding customer service background and the ability to effectively deal with staff and visitors; contributes to an overall positive visitor environment
    • 1 to 2 years of demonstrated retail sales experience, or have the aptitude to become skilled in suggestive selling and cross and up-selling, with knowledge of merchandise as well as the ability to link merchandise to our collections, exhibitions, special events and overall mission
    • Self-motivated, adaptable, and accepting of challenges; strong problem solving skills
    • Prior retail sales, cash handling and competency with POS systems experience required
    • Exceptional organizational skills with attention to detail
    • Reliable and prompt
    • Comfortable and competent working with numbers/figures
    • Ability to safely lift up to 30 pounds unassisted and stand for extended periods of time
    • Available to work a flexible schedule, including weekends, late evenings and during special events
    • Interest in reading

    Preferred Qualifications

    • Bookstore experience preferred

    All team members are expected and encouraged to embody the NYPL Core Values:

    • Be Helpful to patrons and colleagues
    • Be Resourceful in solving problems
    • Be Curious in all aspects of your work

    Work Environment

    • Retail Store
    • Stock Room
    • Library environment

    Physical Duties

    • Standing for considerable periods of time
    • Lifting up to 30lbs
    • Bending
    • Stretching
    • Kneeling


    Starting Salary

    USD $15.00/Hr.


    10-15 Hours Per Week (Monday through Saturdays)
    Late evening and weekends as required

    Union / Non Union

    Non Union


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