Position Overview:

This position is located at Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, a division of the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. The division is responsible for the production, manufacturing, marketing, sale and dissemination of high-quality audio and video recordings, directed at scholars, communities, and the general public, delivered through commercial distribution agents as well as directly from the CFCH offices. It is also responsible for making available to the public a large number of historic recordings represented in the record labels acquired by Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, disseminated by mail order in the form of custom-made CDs, via digital delivery from Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and outside commercial digital distribution agents, and through licensing agreements with other publishers. 

The position reports to the Director of Finance of Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and is responsible for managing the inventory of recordings, and for coordinating all aspects of the manufacture of the Smithsonian Folkways recordings, including printing, pressing, warehousing, and all shipments into and out of the warehouse, including those warehouses of Smithsonian Folkways distributors. This job requires regular reporting to the office in Washington, DC.

Major Areas of Responsibility include:

    • Develops purchase orders in both ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning software) and NetSuite (Folkways financial and inventory systems) with manufacturing facilities in advance in order to ensure timely manufacture and reorders of paper and finished product, warehousing of stock, and shipments to national and international distributors
    • Keeps accurate records for manufacturing and shipments; 
    • Tracks information through manufacturer B2B or via activity reports from print manufacturers. 
    • Using inventory methodology, tracks the manufacture and assembly of all material parts of the finished goods for Smithsonian Folkways catalog of over 400 titles
    • Independently works with production manager and manufacturer to assure parts are on hand in a timely manner so that deadlines are met.  
  • Must be aware of all required steps in multiple ERP systems and follow them in the correct order to assure alignment of both systems.  
  • Troubleshoots and resolves problems at the distributor related to arrival and shipment of orders
  • Represents Smithsonian Folkways Recordings at conferences and conventions and assists other Smithsonian bureaus in arrangements with outside manufacturing of recordings
  • Monitors costs through the development and manufacturing cycles of projects 
  • Assists the Director of Financial Operations in general procurement and administrative duties, including creating purchase orders and purchase card procurements.

Minimum Qualifications (Skills, Knowledge & Abilities):

  • Extensive experience with and knowledge of the production and manufacturing steps of audio compact discs, audio tapes, and LP recordings. 
  • Must have broad experience working with vendors and coordinating the manufacture of film, print stock, audio product, and their shipments to warehouses, and knowledge of how the various manufacturing processes work together to get to finished product. 
  • Experience must be directly related to music industry manufacturing.  
  • Knowledge should include how to research new sources for technology advances in the manufacturing industry.
  • Knowledge of independent distribution systems for audio recordings, and experience in dealing with warehouse managers and distributors.
  • General knowledge of Folkways collection, either through direct involvement or as a consumer/fan, or as a person working with the collection.
  • Ability to keep financial, manufacturing and sales records and to prepare reports on a regular basis and in a timely fashion, and basic knowledge of budgeting. 
  • Knowledge of computers enough to prepare manufacturing forms, and to keep adequate records.
  • Ability to write well and communicate clearly in writing and on the telephone.
  • Knowledge and experience with both PeopleSoft and NetSuite financial systems is a plus.

Physical Demands:

The work is sedentary.  Typically, the employee may sit comfortably to do the work. However, there may be some walking; standing; bending; lifting and dealing with deliveries of goods when necessary, or when observing physical inventory counts in the warehouses.

Work Environment:

The environment involves everyday risks or discomforts that require normal safety precautions of such places as offices, meeting and training rooms, libraries, or commercial vehicles, work practices with office equipment, avoidance of trips and falls, observance of fire regulations and traffic signals.  The work area is adequately lighted, heated and ventilated. Because this position requires handling physical products and inventories, the incumbent must work mostly on location in the DC office.


Applications with a full CV and a letter addressing key criteria (see more detailed description attached) are due by email or regular mail at 5pm EST on April 2, 2020. Please write “Inventory Coordinator Application” in the subject line of your email. For submissions and further questions about this position, please contact our Executive Assistant Logan Clark at [email protected].