Museum Hue

Museum Retail Operations Manager UMMA

Museum Retail Operations Manager - University of Michigan Museum of Art


The University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA) seeks a dynamic, highly motivated, and collaborative individual to manage retail operations in the Museum.

UMMA seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitment to serve the diverse people of Michigan, to sustain the excellence of the university, and to offer our students richly varied disciplines, perspectives and ways of knowing and learning.

For full consideration please provide a resume, with cover letter, describing how your experience and qualifications relate to the position requirements at

Basic Function and Responsibility

The Museum Retail Operations Manager is responsible for the strategic direction, creative leadership, management, supervision, and oversight for the staff, duties and responsibilities of all operational aspects of the Museum Store retail operations. The Manager will work closely with the vendor who operates the UMMA Café cross-promoting for maximizing success of both retail operations. S/he provides a high level of customer service and information to visitors as they experience the Museum. This position insures that visitors have a safe, educational and beneficial experience that translates into return visits and/or commitment and loyalty to UMMA. S/he will inspire the team with a positive attitude and enthusiasm for the Museum of Art. The Manager works closely with the Facilities Manager, the Administrative Manager, and reports to the Deputy Director, Chief Administrative Officer. Works closely with the Deputy Director for Public Experience and Learning to maintain excellent customer service and provides feedback for improvement. Also works with the Director of Communication and Marketing in support of the marketing and branding of the Museum and promotion of exhibitions, and promotion and marketing of the Museum Store and Café.

Characteristic Duties and Responsibilities

Museum Store: Merchandising
Insures that merchandise is an assortment of quality products closely aligned with the Museum’s mission and brand. Responsible for the overall look and feel of the Store, including visual merchandising and array of exhibition-related merchandise. Attends merchandise shows as necessary to purchase store inventory and special exhibition merchandise as appropriate. Purchases all merchandise, sets prices, manages marketing of products, and control level of inventory. Ensures a combination of high quality, innovation, and unique merchandise in a range of price points and categories. Reorders as necessary to maintain planned dollar inventory.  Follows up on orders placed.  Analyzes financial records including sales/stock figures. Prepares monthly summaries as basis for future budgeting/buying.  Develops Museum products when necessary for special exhibitions/store stock.  Controls inventory through markdowns, merchandise returns.  Maintains vendor relationships. Gains knowledge of local, regional and national competition and awareness of buying trends to be successful. 

Plans and executes yearly museum store budget implementing a successful business strategy to optimize profitability.  Maintains all financial records/spreadsheets necessary for budget control including monthly sales/stock levels, and open to buy.  Reconciles daily cash register reports and prepares bank deposit for mail order and Store revenue.  The Manager tracks income and expenditures from placement of order through payment by accounts payable.  Reconciles invoices with merchandise ordered/received; resolves shortage/errors with vendors.  Reconciles credit card expenditures. 

Retail Store Operations
Oversees all Store operations including but not limited to recruiting, hiring, training and terminating employees and volunteers, display, signage, housekeeping, physical inventory, execution of markdowns, scheduling, and timecards. Works with staff to motivate ideas for increased sales. Works with all Museum departments to ensure that the Store and Café always reflect the programs and events sponsored by the Museum.

UMMA Café Operations

S/he will be responsible for ensuring open communication with the vendor, regular meetings with updates on financial position, operations issues/concerns, and work with the Administrative Manager and Deputy Director, Chief Administrative Officer.

Attends State Street Area Association Meetings, does long-range planning for the Store, plans and executes store advertising and events, promotes the Museum Store through customer service and public relations, day-to-day staff communications. 

Customer Service

Enhances the visitor experience. Manage retail staff that engage the visitor from beginning to end, identifying visitor needs, delivering service that exceeds expectations.  Discovers who and why visitors come, provides an opportunity for feedback to the Museum, and assures visitors that their voices are important. Create ongoing professional development programs for staff. Ensure all visitor services staff maintain excellent customer service standards.

Special Events

Works with the Facilities Manager to insure that the visitor experience is extended after public gallery hours during all special events.  Identifies opportunities for the UMMA Store and Cafe to benefit from remaining open.

Required Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education and experience is required.  Must have 3-5 years previous retail experience in a customer service position.  Professional business experience in an administrative capacity is necessary.  Position requires the ability to create effective partnerships across departments and to align retail and visitor services strategies with institutional vision.  Extensive experience is required in managing the financial and analytic activities necessary to achieve strong profits at the UMMA Store on site.  Should have a willingness to work non-traditional hours, think independently, take initiative and meet deadlines. Must be able to resolve conflicts, build a team, and provide motivation in a professional and flexible manner. Must have advanced multitasking and time management skills.

Desired Qualifications

Reasonable knowledge of university policies and procedures is necessary.  Some previous retail experience required, preferably in a museum setting. Must be able to work in a matrix environment. 


The University of Michigan Museum of Art seeks to transform individual and civic life by promoting the discovery, contemplation, and enjoyment of the art of our world.

Job openings are posted for a minimum of seven calendar days. This job may be removed from posting boards and filled any time after the minimum posting period has ended.