CCE6.17 - Collections Access Officer (maternity cover)

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Posted: 16/06/2017 16:53
Start Date: Not Available
Salary: £27,289 (£27,864 after probation) pro rata
Location: Horniman Museum and Gardens, Forest Hill
Level: Experienced (Non Manager)
Deadline: 03/07/2017 10:00
Hours: 21
Benefits: See "Working for us" on the Home menu
Job Type: Part Time

Job title and reference:       Collections Access Officer (maternity cover) (ref CCE6.17)

Salary:                                    circa £27,500 per annum (pro rata)

Hours of work:                      Part time - 21 hours per week (generally 9-5 Wed-Fri, but some flexibility may be required including weekend and evening working)

Contract:                                Fixed-term contract (maternity cover) until 31 August 2018                                           

The Horniman Museum and Gardens in south east London has been open since Victorian times, when the tea trader and philanthropist, Frederick John Horniman first opened his house and extraordinary collection of objects to the local community. Since then, our collection has grown significantly and includes internationally important collections of anthropology and musical instruments, as well as an acclaimed aquarium and natural history gallery – all surrounded by 16 acres of beautiful Gardens offering breathtaking views across London.

We are looking for an enthusiastic and experienced part-time Collections Access Officer to provide maternity cover for the co-ordination of the Object in Focus short-term loans project. This is a three year temporary project (started April 2015 and funded by the Renaissance Major Grant Programme) to facilitate increased and easier access for smaller museums to the Horniman’s collections.

You’ll have previously worked in a collections management role with practical experience of loans work and handling objects, or have other relevant experience in a museum - preferably within a collections management, exhibitions or a hands-on registrar role.

As well as being able to organise a diverse workload, meet deadlines and work accurately, you’ll be sensitive to the needs of smaller museums and community groups and be able to communicate with both specialists and non-specialists. You’ll be equally happy working on your own, within a close-knit team, and with the wider public.

The closing date for completed applications is 10am on Monday 3 July 2017.  Interviews will be held on Wednesday 12 July 2017, and we anticipate that the successful candidate will start work in late August/early September.

The Horniman is committed to equality of opportunity and welcomes applications from all sections of the community. 

How to Apply

Click on “Apply Now” at the top or bottom of this page. When you apply you will be asked to upload a covering statement in Microsoft Word format (the document must be in .doc  format and the maximum file size is 2 MB). Please also ensure that you have uploaded your CV as a separate document which you can do when you create an account or login.

This post requires a full, clean driving licence, current and regular driving experience and a willingness to drive museum vehicles. At the top of your covering statement please briefly confirm that you have these skills and experience.

The rest of your covering statement should provide an overview of no more than 2 pages describing your experience relevant to the role as outlined in the Job Description and Person Specification.  


Job title                                  Collections Access Officer (maternity cover) (Ref CCE6.17)

Section                                   Collections Management

Reports to                             Collections Manager

Responsible for                    n/a

Hours of work                       Part-time - 21 hours per week (generally 9-5 Wed-Fri, but some flexibility will be required including weekend and evening working)

Contract                                 Fixed-term maternity cover late August / September 2017 to 31st August 2018

Main purpose of the job

This Arts Council England Renaissance-funded post aims to improve access to our collections and support smaller museums to refresh their displays with the provision of an ‘Object in Focus’ (OiF) short term loan.

OiF raises awareness of the Horniman, its collections and its staff, both within the sector and with existing and potential visitors.  It helps us meet our leadership and resilience ambitions as a Major Partner Museum very successfully.  It enables us to build relationships with smaller museums and other institutions and to support their work at minimal cost to them.

To achieve these aims, the post holder will be responsible for practical collections management duties ie. condition checking, location control and object movement, loan paperwork etc. They will liaise with the borrowing museums and Horniman staff (and any others as required) to co-ordinate the project.                  

Section description          

Collections Management is responsible for the care, location, storage, packing and transport of the Museum’s collections. We contribute to the development of procedures and standards to ensure the ongoing high standard of organisation and care of the collection.

The section supports the work of departments across the museum and is closely involved in the development of in-house exhibitions, research and documentation projects. We are responsible for the organisation and transport of loans to and from the museum and contribute to the processing of acquisitions and disposals. Based at the Study Collections Centre, the department also provides access to the collections for visiting researchers.

Main responsibilities

Development & Management of ‘Object in Focus programme (95%)

  • Take the central role in the day-to-day management, development and delivery of the ‘Object in Focus’ loans programme
  • Work closely with colleagues in Exhibitions, Collections Conservation and Care and Curatorial departments to facilitate ‘Object in Focus’ loans
  • Develop the ‘Object in Focus’ loans programme to enable project aspirations to be met -8 loans per year (April to March) including the provision of conservation, exhibition, interpretation and other support as part of the loan package. Build good relationships with the delivery partners, local and national museums etc
  • Deliver, install and decant showcase and objects as required at each loan venue in collaboration with Horniman, contractor and loan venue staff
  • Manage and monitor the Object in Focus budget
  • Keep relevant records in regard to the project (budget spend, environment, security, insurance), update MIMSY XG and issue loans paperwork. Record loan and project outcomes and evaluate from both an internal and external viewpoint

Operational Support at SCC (5%)

  • Assist with the efficient location, packing, movement and storage of museum objects at the Study Collections Centre and with the preparation and packing of museum objects for movement to and from the main Museum site and other venues, where appropriate. This includes manual handling.
  • To assist with collections management work in regard to exhibitions preparations, installations and de-installations.
  • Record information on the Museum’s collections management database (MIMSY XG) and assist with collections documentation
  • Act as a key holder for the Study Collections Centre with responsibility for unlocking and locking the building when required.
  • Follow the handling and storage guidelines created by the Conservation and Collections Care Section
  • Carry out any other duties reasonably requested by the line manager

General responsibilities

  • Act in a professional manner and uphold the Horniman’s Code of Conduct
  • Follow and promote safe systems of work and observe health and safety regulations
  • Any other duties that may be required to ensure the effective running of SCC and the Collections Management section.

Job activities may vary and evolve over time to meet business needs.

PERSON SPECIFICATION - essential (E) or desirable (D)


  • An excellent standard of literacy and numeracy (E)
  • A current full, clean driving licence, and willingness to drive museum vehicles (E)

Knowledge and experience

  • Substantial relevant experience, preferably within a collections management role and including experience of exhibitions processes and marketing (E)
  • Substantial practical experience of handling museum objects. Understanding of collections care and storage, transport, and display requirements (E)
  • Practical experience of loans processes within a museum or art gallery environment (E)
  • A practical understanding of Health and Safety guidelines including manual handling, PPE and COSHH (E)

Skills and abilities

  • Computer literate, preferably with experience of MS Word, Excel and Outlook (E)
  • Experience of using collections management systems (E) MIMSY XG (D)
  • The ability to work in a careful, accurate and methodical way, paying attention to detail (E)
  • The ability to work to and meet deadlines, to manage and plan a diverse workload and to work independently and on your own initiative according to requirements (E)
  • Project management skills to enable the ‘Object in Focus’ programme to proceed and targets to be met. (E)
  • Willingness and ability to undertake manual duties, including the handling of museum objects after appropriate training (E)
  • The ability to manage and supervise contractors, external visitors and volunteers (E)
  • Effective communication, both orally and in writing, with specialists and non-specialists (E)
  • The ability to develop positive and effective working relationships with others to work as part of an interdisciplinary team, taking the professional viewpoint of others into account (E)
  • An appreciation of the diverse nature of smaller museums and community groups and the need to be sensitive to different needs, interests and beliefs (E)

Personal attributes

  • An empathy with the Horniman mission and an interest in its exhibitions, activities and events
  • Commitment to equality and diversity
  • Willingness to work flexibly to achieve corporate objectives
  • Commitment to own learning and professional development


  • A basic DBS check is required for this post.
  • Some evening and weekend working may be required

June 2017

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