Senior Assistant Registrar for Collections

Updated: 7 days ago
Location: Cambridge, MASSACHUSETTS


Harvard Art Museums


Position Description

The Harvard Art Museums seeks a Senior Assistant Registrar to join its dynamic team to help support a vibrant program of collecting, exhibiting, research, and teaching. Reporting to the Assistant Director for Registration, the Senior Assistant Registrar for Collections is responsible for maintaining the collection files, processing deaccessions, managing long-term loans, addressing undocumented/unclaimed artworks and resolving related conundrums, responding to general collection inquiries, as well as ensuring up-to-date policies, procedures and practices are in place.

Duties & Responsibilities:

  • Responsible for creating and maintaining all Collection files, and for managing deaccessions, long-term loans, and unclaimed and undocumented artworks; ensure related policies and procedures are kept current; develop and implement new policies and procedures as needed.
  • Ensure related data entered in TMS (the museums’ collection database), is consistent and accurate; refine collection general data entry process and TMS plug-ins where needed to increase database quality and coherency.
  • Manage multi-year special collection projects as assigned for maintenance, organization and accuracy of collection information.
  • Support Assistant Director for Registration with advancing workflow digitization initiative to reduce or eliminate paper where possible, and to increase quality and efficiency of individual and collaborative workflow.
  • Develop innovative approaches for data entry and tracking in TMS in collaboration with Assistant Director for Registration and the Collections Information and Database Specialist.
  • Oversee quarterly collection audit.
  • Generate annual statistics.
  • Respond to all general collection inquiries.
  • Assist Associate Registrar for Collections and other colleagues as needed. 
  • Effectively build and maintain productive working relationships; collaborate with internal and external colleagues. 
  • Organize and lead meetings, prepare agendas, document decisions with next steps, and ensure all team members are aware of deadlines and specific deliverables, advising the Assistant Director of Registration on the integration, workload and timing of projects.
  • May oversee and mentor intern(s) or student worker(s).
  • Serve as an in-person or virtual courier as necessary.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Basic Qualifications

Candidates MUST meet the following basic qualifications in order to be considered for this role:
Bachelor’s degree or equivalent; minimum 2 years of experience in museum registration or a related field.

Additional Qualifications and Skills

  • Experience working in the arts, non-profits, museums, collections management, fine art handling and shipping is desirable. Previous experience working at a university museum was helpful.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills. 
  • Strong organizational skills, detail-oriented, ability to work independently and with minimal supervision as an effective member of a team.   
  • Experience with TMS, Microsoft 365 Suite, and Basecamp. Ability to quickly learn new software.
  • Experience contributing to budget planning, monitoring and working within budgets.
  • Knowledge of current best practices in museum collections, preservation principles, art handling standards and cataloging. 
  • Experience deaccessioning collections, including determining legal status, tracking the deaccessioning processes, and coordinating disposal of materials.
  • Ability to handle multiple, complex projects simultaneously. Demonstrated excellent problem-solving skills and project planning skills.
  • Must be discreet and reliable working with sensitive and confidential information

Additional Information

PLEASE NOTE: This position may start hybrid (some on-campus/some remote work), with the transition to full-on campus in Cambridge if required by the department.  Work options for this role will be discussed during the interview process.

The University requires all Harvard community members to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and remain up to date with COVID-19 vaccine boosters, as detailed in Harvard’s Vaccine & Booster Requirements . Individuals may claim exemption from the vaccine requirement for medical or religious reasons. More information regarding the University’s COVID vaccination requirement, exemptions, and verification of vaccination status may be found on the University’s “COVID-19 Vaccine Information” webpage: . 

A hybrid work schedule is possible.
Domestic and international travel may be required.

The Harvard Art Museums

Ever since their founding, the Harvard Art Museums—the Fogg Museum, Busch-Reisinger Museum and Arthur M. Sackler Museum—have been dedicated to advancing and supporting learning at Harvard University, in the local community, and around the world. Displayed in galleries that mix not only media but schools of art, the collection at Harvard is celebrated and interrogated within a larger story of artistic expression and historical and contemporary issues. The diverse collection is among the largest in the United States. Through research, teaching, professional training, and public education the museums strive to advance the understanding and appreciation of art.

Job Function

General Administration


USA - MA - Cambridge

Job Code

403040 Coordinator II


Collections Management, Registration


55 - Hvd Union Cler & Tech Workers

Pre-Employment Screening

Criminal, Education, Identity


Full time. Monday through Friday. 35 hours per week. 

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging

Harvard University views equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging as the pathway to achieving inclusive excellence and fostering a campus culture where everyone can thrive. We strive to create a community that draws upon the widest possible pool of talent to unify excellence and diversity while fully embracing individuals from varied backgrounds, cultures, races, identities, life experiences, perspectives, beliefs, and values.

EEO Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.

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