A museum or art gallery attendant patrols the public areas of the site, checking on security and making sure the collections are in good order.
An important part of the job is dealing with visitors and answering queries. Attendants may also work in the cloakroom, dealing with visitors’ coats and bags, or in the reception area, welcoming groups and selling catalogues and souvenirs.
Attendants assist curators and other senior staff in moving and changing displays and exhibitions.
In a smaller museum or gallery museum attendants are likely to have some clerical, paperwork, sales, technical or cleaning duties.
Museum or gallery attendants tend to work 37 hours a week on a rota which includes weekend opening hours. Part-time work may be available.
The work is usually indoors, in warm and light conditions. It may involve standing and walking for long periods.
It may be necessary to wear a uniform, especially in a larger museum or gallery.
As a museum attendant you should:
The main employers are national museums and galleries which are usually in cities, local authority museums and galleries, university museums and independent museums.
There is a great deal of competition for vacancies, despite the low pay and weekend working. At the moment, very few attendants go on to become managers.
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