Visitor Center Retail Supervisor (4475)

Education and Outreach Socorro, New Mexico



Position Description:


Position Summary

The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) announces an opportunity for full-time Visitor Center Retail Supervisor with our Education and Public Outreach (EPO) team at the Very Large Array (VLA).  The Retail Supervisor will oversee management of the VLA Gift Shop.  This will include monitoring the activity of the Gift Shop staff, coordinating the ordering, shipping and receiving of merchandise, problem solving and providing excellent customer service.


In addition to competitive pay, NRAO provides excellent paid time off benefits (vacation and sick leave). Medical, dental and vision plans are effective first day of employment. NRAO’s retirement benefit contributes an amount equal to 10 percent of a qualified participant’s base pay. No contribution is required of the employee; we also offer an optional supplemental, tax-deferred plan for employee retirement contributions.


Job Duties Summary

Work is accomplished with minimum supervision from EPO Assistant Director. Key duties and responsibilities will include:

  • Managing the VLA Gift Shop operations including:
    • Hire, train, and supervise retail clerks;
    • Establish/Maintain proper fiscal procedures for all retail operations;
    • Manage VC Gift Shop inventory including selection, pricing, receiving and inventory control;
    • Ensures work orders are submitted in a timely manner for maintenance of public areas including exhibits, auditorium, walking tour and rest rooms;
    • Facilitates adequate communication between NM. Ops staff, STEAM Ed and gift shop staff.
  • Manage the online retail shop including inventory selection, pricing, and store layout;
  • Compile periodic and ad hoc reports regarding sales and costs of goods sold, productivity metric and other organizational and fiscal reports;
  • Direct customer service and sales activities in store; resolve customer issues and concerns. Model and hold team accountable for outstanding customer service. Perform opening and closing operations and fill in for sales clerks as needed. 
  • Actively participates as a member of the Education and Public Outreach Division, contributing to Observatory-wide short and long-term planning, program development, reporting, and performance assessment;
  • Proactive compliance with NRAO and government safety policies and procedures in own work area is expected;
  • Others duties as assigned.


Work Environment

The VLA Site is a remote scientific/industrial facility at 7000 feet elevation.  Works in office environment, must be able to work at a computer with detailed and complex alpha and numerical information.


Position Requirements:


Minimum Education

High School Diploma


Preferred Education

Associate’s degree in Retail or related field; or equivalent combination of education and experience.


Minimum Experience

At least five years of retail experience including three years of supervisory experience


Competency Summary

Must be able to work independently and reliably with minimal supervision. Prior experience with credit card processing software and Point of Sale software required. Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including public speaking; and the ability to communicate comfortably and effectively with the public, educators, students, senior managers. Must have a good working knowledge of personal computers, the Internet, Office software such as MS Word, Excel. Must have a valid driver’s license.


Physical Requirements

Will be required to stand and sit, and may be required to lift 25 pounds or more on occasion. Must be able to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing.  Specific vision abilities include close vision, distance vision, and depth perception. To ensure the safety and wellbeing of observatory staff, the GBO/NRAO will require Facilities Access staff and staff assigned to a Safety Sensitive position to be vaccinated against covid-19.  Special consideration may be considered for medical or religious exemptions.


Additional Requirements

Must have received or be willing to receive the COVID-19 vaccine by September 1, 2021 to be considered for U.S.-based vacancies.


Background Check

The selected candidate must successfully pass a post-offer, pre-employment background check as a condition of employment.


Application Instructions:


Select the “Apply” button below.  Please be will need to be prepared to upload your current CV/Resume and a letter of application describing interest and suitability for the position.


 Equal Opportunity Employer Statement:


AUI is an equal opportunity employer.  Women, Minorities, Vietnam-Era Veterans, Disabled Veterans, Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities are encouraged to apply.  To view our complete statement, please visit  If you require reasonable accommodation for any part of the application or hiring process due to a disability, you may submit your request by sending an email to [email protected].


The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the National Science Foundation operated under cooperative agreement by Associated Universities, Inc.