Archives & Manuscripts Coordinator

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Created: December 1, 2014


The University of Kansas Libraries seeks a knowledgeable, energetic and innovative individual to develop, document and implement workflows that will improve access to complex archives and collections of manuscripts in order to increase the value of these materials to research, teaching, and learning.  The Archives and Manuscripts Coordinator serves as the supervisor of the Manuscripts Processing Unit, reporting to the Head of Cataloging, Archival Processing and Digitization Services.

The Coordinator oversees KU Libraries’ Manuscripts Processing Unit, supervising 2 full-time staff and a varying number of student assistants.  The primary responsibility of this position is to work with unit staff and members of the Distinctive Collections division to analyze current manuscript processing workflows, establish processing priorities and develop, document and implement policies and procedures based on a combination of best practices in the field, unique needs of KU Libraries and minimal processing techniques (MPLP).

This position is a 3-year, limited-term, Unclassified Academic Staff appointment.

Position will be filled as an Assistant Specialist (12-month, Unclassified Academic Staff); however, candidates at higher ranks may, in some cases, be considered. See Faculty Handbook on the following KU website for the criteria:

Rank considerations are based on professional performance, research, and service experience sufficient to qualify for appointment at the rank of Assistant Specialist, Associate Specialist, or Senior Specialist. See Discipline Expectations for additional details:

The University of Kansas Libraries is especially interested in hiring faculty members who can contribute to four key campus-wide strategic initiatives: (1) Sustaining the Planet, Powering the World; (2) Promoting Well-Being, Finding Cures; (3) Building Communities, Expanding Opportunities; and (4) Harnessing Information, Multiplying Knowledge. For more information, see

The successful candidate for the position must be eligible to work in the U.S. prior to the start of the position.

Job Description

Professional Responsibilities (90%)
  • Works to establish processing priorities, specificity, and appropriate levels of processing for groups of materials in collaboration with appropriate KU Libraries staff and supervisor.
  • Develops workflows and procedures for accessioning, processing, and managing collections in a variety of formats in accordance with accepted archival standards, the unique needs of KU Libraries and minimal processing techniques (MPLP).
  • Recruits, trains, supervises, and evaluates the work of the manuscript processing staff and student assistants.
  • Processes and catalogs new manuscript collections and additions.  This includes the creation and/or editing of finding aids using ArchivesSpace and the review and publishing of completed finding aids to KU’s eXtensible Text Framework (XTF) platform.
  • Assists in the preservation assessment of collections and in the selection of materials for conservation treatment.
  • Follows national standards for archival description, e.g. Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS).
Service and Professional Development (10%)
  • Reads professional literature and adapts innovative approaches to library services, as appropriate.
  • Participates in professional workshops, seminars, and conferences as appropriate.
  • Participates on library committees, working groups and task forces, as assigned or appropriate.
Required Qualifications
  • Master’s degree by date of appointment.
  • Minimum of one year of supervisory experience.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills as evidenced by the application materials and through the interview process.
Preferred Qualifications
  • ALA-accredited MLS or other relevant advanced degree.
  • Minimum of one year of experience processing, arranging, and describing archival and manuscript materials, preferably in an academic research institution.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of current archival theory, practice, and national and international standards and best practices that govern the arrangement and description of primary source materials.
  • Demonstrated experience using minimal processing (MPLP) techniques.
  • Experience developing processing plans and creating EAD finding aids.
  • Ability to organize work effectively, to set priorities, to meet quality and productivity expectations, and to achieve unit goals
  • Experience in providing staff training and in documenting policies and procedures.
  • Knowledge of archive management software (ArchivesSpace, Archon, Archivist’s Toolkit, or similar)
  • Demonstrated ability to manage projects and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent analytical, time management, organizational, and problem-solving skills.
  • Knowledge of and experience with preservation and conservation standards and procedures for manuscript/archival materials.
  • Strong knowledge of American or modern European history or literature, and broad knowledge in the humanities, as demonstrated through academic degrees, training or experience.
  • Excellent oral communication skills and the ability to collaborate effectively with diverse constituents.
  • Working knowledge of one or more western European languages.
Additional Candidate Instruction A complete application includes an online application, cover letter, curriculum vitae, and contact information (including emails) for 3 references who can be contacted for letters of recommendation. Please use your cover letter to address how you meet the required and preferred qualifications.

Last updated: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 23:42 UTC