Assistant Manager, Metadata Services

Long Island City, NY
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Created: December 22, 2020



Located within the New York Public Library’s Digital Research Division, the Metadata Services Unit (MSU) improves access and discovery of library resources and strengthens data interoperability across the library through metadata production services, software development support, and metadata strategy. 

The MSU supports and engages staff in efficient metadata creation for digitization, offering staff training, development and documentation of local standards and practices, project consultation, and quality control. Our team also supports the creation, improvement, and maintenance of data-centered applications. In addition, the MSU offers metadata consultation, guidance, and leadership across the organization and works to raise awareness and connect stakeholders across NYPL around metadata issues.

The MSU seeks experienced candidates enthusiastic about metadata and the future of libraries for the new role of Assistant Manager, Metadata Services. Reporting to the Manager, Metadata Services, the Assistant Manager, Metadata Services oversees staff in day-to-day metadata production, optimizes workflows and projects, and assists the Manager in organizing, planning, and implementing strategic initiatives. The candidate balances high productivity and high quality output to improve discovery and access to NYPL’s digital content. Exceptional interpersonal and written communication skills are essential to successfully supporting projects across NYPL research library divisions and within a cooperative team environment. This role is a perfect opportunity for a proactive, reliably thoughtful individual invested in team cohesion and metadata futures.

Principal Responsibilities

Reporting to the Manager, Metadata Services, the Assistant Manager, Metadata Services will:

  • Oversee MSU staff in day-to-day metadata production, remediation, and liaison work
  • Supervise employee productivity and work quality and provide constructive feedback and coaching to improve individual performance and operational efficiencies
  • Assist the manager in organizing, planning, and implementing strategic initiatives and special projects
  • Create, remediate, and enhance metadata for the Library’s digital collections
  • Liaise with metadata creators across NYPL divisions to support metadata project planning, guidance on standards, and the efficient creation/maintenance of high-quality metadata
  • Coordinate and lead training for metadata management and production tools
  • Contribute to local metadata policies, procedures, and standards as well as technical requirements for NYPL’s Metadata Management System, digital repository, and other tools
  • Field, troubleshoot, and escalate software bugs to the Manager. Contribute to new feature development for tools including NYPL’s Metadata Management System
  • Keep up with current standards, trends, and technologies in the field through participation in cross-institutional working groups, conferences, and other professional development activities
  • Additional responsibilities and duties as assigned

Required Education & Experience

  • ALA-accredited Master’s degree in Library and Information Science or equivalent relevant experience working with library and archival metadata
  • 4-5 years professional experience, with minimum 3 years’ supervisory experience of professional staff

Minimum Qualifications

  • Exceptional interpersonal, verbal, and written communication skills, including the ability to offer guidance and constructive feedback for individual and team growth
  • Demonstrated experience supervising professional staff and workflows, with strong aptitude for project management and coordination
  • Ability to work well both collaboratively and independently on complex projects involving diverse stakeholders and competing deadlines, using informed judgment and clear communication strategies to successfully complete tasks 
  • Demonstrated experience with building positive and productive interdepartmental and/or interdisciplinary relationships
  • Proven organizational, analytical, and independent problem-solving skills, with the ability to manage a large volume of work while maintaining a consistently high degree of accuracy.
  • Comfort with rapidly synthesizing new information and workflows 
  • Working knowledge of information and technology concepts including metadata (e.g., MODS, METS, EAD, MARC, RDF, Dublin Core, etc.), data formats (JSON, XML, etc.), programming (Python, RegEx, CLI, etc.) interoperable digital asset frameworks (IIIF), distributed version control (Git/GitHub), indexing (Solr) and data access via APIs
  • Working knowledge of scripting and querying languages such as Python, SQL, Bash, R, etc. to extract, analyze, or manipulate metadata with strong interest in strengthening skills through professional development
  • Familiarity with Linked Data concepts and technologies

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience working in research libraries, museums, archives, or other collecting institutions
  • Experience interpreting and applying descriptive content standards (such as RDA, DACS, CCO, etc.) in a non-MARC metadata environment
  • Experience or knowledge of project management strategies and tools

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

Physical Duties

  • Limited physical effort is required
  • May require travel within NYC


35 hours a week; 9am-5pm Monday-Friday


Published: Wednesday, December 23, 2020 18:58 UTC

Last updated: Wednesday, December 23, 2020 18:58 UTC