Employment

Are you looking for fun, fast-paced work in an entertaining, educational environment? We're looking for candidates that show a commitment to the Museum mission and a philosophy of play-based, experiential learning environment. Check out our current job openings.
About Us

The Hands On Children’s Museum is Washington’s award-winning youth Museum located on Olympia’s East Bay waterfront. Our mission is to stimulate curiosity, creativity, and critical thinking skills through rich, interactive learning experiences.

Voted a “Best Place for Kids” for more than a decade, the Museum offers a state of the art LEED Gold facility with 150 indoor exhibits, a half-acre Outdoor Discovery Center and nature play space, Arts Studio, a MakeSpace for tinkering and inventing, and award-winning education programs including camps, workshops, preschool, parenting classes, field trips, community outreach, and family support programs.

Join Our Team

Thank you for your interest in working with the Hands On Children’s Museum! We offer paid time off, Museum passes, birthday party and café card, medical, dental, and pre-tax supplemental insurance, a retirement plan, and a scream room! For more information about Olympia visit Experience Olympia.

Open Positions

Applicants who are offered employment must pass a background check as a condition of employment.

Director of Development & Events

Organization & Position Overview:

Improve your quality of life! Join us & find out why Olympia is regularly named a great place to live. Located on Olympia’s East Bay waterfront, the Hands On Children’s Museum is a beautiful, award-winning cultural institution and popular early learning destination for families throughout the Northwest and the nation. As a national Museum for All, Hands On served 325,000 annual visitors (pre-pandemic), with one-third of visitors served through a variety of free and low-cost Access programs.

We are seeking an innovative, creative, and highly motivated professional who believes in the value of inspiring young children to love to learn. The Director of Development & Events is responsible for strategic leadership and management of the museum’s annual fundraising programs including individual & planned giving, corporate sponsorship, fundraising events, and capital projects. We are especially fortunate to have an extensive base of support and we are looking for a gifted professional who can steward and further develop these important relationships.

Salary Range: $75 – $90k

Benefits: Benefits Package Available

Hours: This senior level exempt position requires core hours in the Museum on a Monday-Friday schedule, with flexibility to work some weekend and evenings around special events and projects.

Reports To: CEO

Core Responsibilities

  • In collaboration with the CEO, develop and successfully meet the annual fundraising plan to achieve our mission. This position is responsible for raising $1M in contributed revenue through individual gifts, corporate sponsorships, grants and events to support the Museum’s annual operating budget of $4M.
  • With a strong track record of funding success, this position will nurture the Museum’s important relationships with our contributors and our community.
  • Plans, manages, and secures sponsorship for the annual Summer Splash! Festival & Gala, the Museum’s largest annual fundraising event.
  • In partnership with the CEO and Board of Directors, plans strategic stewardship efforts for major donors and the Leadership Circle. Staff Board committees as appropriate.
  • Seek and manage corporate sponsorships & corporate membership programs to support Museum exhibits, education programs, events, and capital projects.
  • Manage an effective and successful department including an Events Manager, a Development Coordinator, and a contract Grant Writer while interfacing daily with the Communications Manager and Senior Database Manager to coordinate interdepartmental work. Ensure successful operations of the development department including fielding inquiries, managing donor stewardship and communication efforts, and responding to board member requests.
  • Ensure best practices in managing the gift process including gift and pledge receipts, invoicing, donor records and acknowledgements.
  • Ensure appropriate recognition for donors including building and exhibit naming, event signage, and print, web, and digital recognition.
  • Represent the Museum in the community and attend service organization meetings.

Measuring Success:

  • The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to successfully develop, manage and achieve the Museum’s annual fundraising goals.
  • Demonstrate effective stewardship strategies for building relationships with Museum investors.
  • Demonstrate the ability to identify and pursue new revenue sources and increase major gifts.
  • The successful candidate will set performance metrics including fundraising goals as part of the annual budgeting process and set progress benchmarks for review on a quarterly basis.

Qualifications & Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree plus 5 years of increasing responsibilities & demonstrated success in a Development Management role. Experience with non-profit or educational organizations preferred. CFRE certification desired.
  • 2+ years of experience using Altru, Raiser’s Edge, Greater Giving or similar donor software. Successful experience generating queries and pulling reports. Prospect research experience desired.
  • Self-starter with a demonstrated work ethic, sense of integrity and emotional intelligence.
  • Must possess excellent project management skills including attention to detail, analytical and problem-solving skills. Ability to prioritize, meet deadlines and manage multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • Strong communication skills, both written and verbal, and ability to interface directly with Museum donors, board members, volunteers, and other constituents at all levels. Ability to maintain confidentiality with tact and discretion.
  • Ability to work independently, and collaboratively as part of a team.
  • Tolerance for ambiguity as museum continues to grow and management roles evolve and shift.
  • Fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and must provide proof of vaccination upon hire.
  • Sense of humor a must.

Workplace Values

  • The Museum is managed in an entrepreneurial spirit that values new ideas, risk-taking and employee participation.
  • We believe in continuous improvement in all areas and aggressively pursue all ideas to improve what we do.
  • We are customer focused. We listen, respond, and redesign the way we work based on customer feedback.
  • We believe in collaboration not competition with other Museums, community organizations, and non-profits, to improve the quality of life in our community.

Hands On Children’s Museum exhibits, education programs and employment, available to all without discrimination.

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references to employment@hocm.org.

Finance Manager

Organization & Position Overview:

Located on Olympia’s East Bay waterfront, the Hands On Children’s Museum is a beautiful, award-winning cultural institution and popular early learning destination for families throughout the Northwest and the nation. As a national Museum for All, Hands On served 325,000 annual visitors (pre-pandemic), with one-third of visitors served through a variety of free and low-cost Access programs.

This is your chance to do the work you love for an organization that cares about children, families, and community. The Museum is looking for an enthusiastic and experienced accounting professional with demonstrated success who enjoys a fast-paced position with lots of variety and the chance to work with other like-minded staff.

As a key member of the management team, the Finance Manager is a hands-on leader who directly oversees and has mastery of the details of all daily and periodic accounting, accounts receivable and accounts payable.  Additionally, the Finance Manager collaborates with senior management to prepare a variety of statistical and other financial reports and performs related duties as needed or assigned.

Essential Duties & Responsibilities include the following:

  • Reporting and Compliance
    • Prepare and analyze daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual financial reports to the management team.
    • Maintain current and effective standard operating procedures and internal controls for financial management.
    • Assists in annual budget preparation process.
    • Assist in the management of grant reporting, compliance, and reconciliation.
    • Oversees Café and Giftshop inventory.
    • Implement policies and procedures to ensure all Museum records are archived in compliance with state and local laws.
    • Manages physical inventory of museum furniture, fixtures & equipment.
    • Attends & participates in meetings & training.
    • Assist with museum special events.
    • Completes special projects as assigned.
  • Accounts Payable
    • Oversees the entry of invoices, credit card purchases and reimbursements in accounting system, ensures accuracy and compliance with internal controls.
    • Weekly payment of invoices.
    • Manages 1099 vendor filings.
    • Researches and resolves vendor inquiries or discrepancies.
    • Reconciles monthly vendor and credit card statements.
    • Reconciles monthly bank statements.
  • Accounts Receivable
    • Ensure transactions and reports for correct entry, mathematical accuracy and proper budget allocations.
    • Invoicing for field trips, groups, private events, donor pledges
    • Researches and resolves billing/payment discrepancies
    • Reviews receivable aging and proactively work with internal departments to follow-up on outstanding payments.
    • Performs monthly reconciliation of contributed income with Development Dept.
    • Month-end closing of accounts receivable functions.
    • Oversees parking pay station & fee collections.

Job Requirements:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting or related experience.
  • 3+ years accounting experience with a non-profit organization.
  • Strong financial management experience with generally accepted accounting principles and internal controls.
  • Ability to problem solve collaboratively; have good planning and organization skills to balance multiple projects simultaneously and effectively.
  • Ability to work and succeed in a dynamic and fast-paced environment and prioritize work.
  • Must be able to work independently and to exercise professional judgment.
  • Ability to maintain accurate and detailed records and to learn new programs, processes and technology.
  • Excellent computer literacy is required, must be highly proficient with QuickBooks and Microsoft Excel, Word & Outlook and relevant business tools.
  • Excellent communication skills — both written & verbal.
  • Supportive and caring of other staff, visitors and organizational mission.
  • Must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and provide proof upon hire.

Salary & Benefits:  As a leading non-profit, we offer a competitive salary, medical, dental and vision coverage, paid time off and paid holidays, a 401(k) plan and lots of special educational perks including discounts on camps, classes, museum membership and special employee benefits. This is a full-time exempt position.

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, 3 professional references, and a bullet point list noting how your experience and skills match the requirements of the position to employment@hocm.org.

Café Supervisor

Organization & Position Overview:

The Hands On Children’s Museum is Washington’s award-winning youth Museum located on Olympia’s East Bay waterfront. This is your chance to bring your quick service restaurant management experience to our growing Play Day Café and be part of an organization that cares about children, families, and community.

As the Play Day Café Supervisor, you will be responsible for leadership and growth of your team in providing efficient, safe and customer service focused café operations. Our café offers salads, sandwiches, grilled paninis and quesadillas, soup, coffee, and other grab and go options to museum patrons, programs, and events. The core schedule for this position is Tuesday through Saturday and will have consistent daytime working hours, some flexibility of hours may be available. Café service hours typically end daily around 4pm, with occasional evening events.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Direct supervision of café staff team workload & priorities
  • Responsible for staff training, regular communication, and scheduling
  • Ensures best practices in food handling & cleanliness
  • Ensures café equipment maintenance
  • Ensures café areas are clean, safe, well stocked and inviting on a daily basis.
  • Plans and places food and supply orders
  • Accurate tracking of waste/loss and cost of goods
  • Responsible for monthly café inventory and reconciliation with the Business Dept.
  • Makes menu, equipment, or other recommendations to Sr. Manager of Daily Operations
  • Works with managers to troubleshoot any customer service issues & provide resolutions

Job Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred, relevant work experience may substitute
  • Minimum 2 + years of experience directly supervising team of 3 or more staff ideally in a quick service restaurant setting (team lead, not shift lead)
  • Experience developing and implementing effective staff training in a food service setting
  • Experience leading food and supply ordering & inventory
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills, included demonstrated professionalism
  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Excellent project coordination skills; multi-tasking and prioritizing.
  • Excellent computer literacy is required, proficient in use of Microsoft Excel, Word, Outlook and web-based ordering
  • Current Food Handler’s Permit or ServSafe Certification preferred
  • Ability to work in a team setting with a high degree of daily communication required.
  • Able to work independently with limited direction in a fast-paced environment with a great deal of flexibility and attention to detail
  • Must care about and value the viewpoints of the other team members and organizational mission.
  • Fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and must provide proof of vaccination upon hire.

Our Values:

  • The Museum is managed in an entrepreneurial spirit that values new ideas, risk-taking and employee participation.
  • We believe in continuous improvement in all areas and aggressively pursue all ideas to improve what we do.
  • We are customer-focused.  We listen, respond and redesign the way we work based on customer feedback.
  • We believe in collaboration, not competition with other Museums, community organizations and non-profits to improve the quality of life in our community.

Compensation:  As a leading non-profit, we offer a competitive wage, medical, dental and vision coverage, paid time off and paid holidays, a 401K plan and lots of special educational perks including discounts on camps, classes, museum membership and special employee benefits.

Hands On Children’s Museum exhibits, programs and employment are available to all without discrimination.

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references to employment@hocm.org.

Purchasing & Business Coordinator

Position Overview:

The Purchasing & Business Coordinator position is responsible for purchasing and maintaining the inventory of materials, supplies, exhibit props and equipment, and following through with vendors on shipment and delivery.

Duties and Responsibilities:

Purchasing and inventorying comprise approximately 80% of this position’s time. The coordinator will track exhibit props, office, janitorial, printer ink/toner, staff room, and emergency supplies, purchase replacement props and supplies as needed, distribute purchases appropriately, and submit receipts to the Business Department. Weekly shopping will include placing online orders as well as driving to retail or other vendors to purchase items. Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Ensure that the Museum’s exhibit props and interstitials in the galleries are stocked and in excellent condition with an adequate inventory back-stock.
  • Perform creative research to identify engaging props to refresh and enhance the exhibit experience for visitors.
  • Research, compare quality and cost for procurement of new and replacement props.
  • Inventory museum supplies weekly.
  • Purchase supplies required and/or requested and approved by museum staff/departments.
  • Conduct regular price comparisons, research best sources for purchases, both locally and online to find the best product for the best price with the least amount of shipping.
  • Maintain effective communication with vendors and museum departments for all pending shopping items such as delivery status, resolving issues, department concerns, and processing returns.
  • Compare product deliveries with orders and contact vendors when there are discrepancies.
  • Distribute purchases to appropriate people/locations.
  • Work with Café Manager to complete weekly orders.
  • Be on-site and provide support for Museum special events.
  • Organize and itemize receipts and submit for approval and processing.
  • Update par levels periodically (based on consumption trends)
  • Take lost and found items to Goodwill.
  • Package and mail items left behind to visitors.
  • Errand requests for Museum departments.
  • Maintain Purchasing Procedure Manual.
  • Use efficient routes when shopping to save on fuel expenses.

Other responsibilities for the Business Department comprise approximately 10% of this position’s time. Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Maintain off-site inventory of archived records.
  • Complete monthly copier counts
  • Weekly parking machine collection & deposits
  • Monthly money funnel collection and deposits
  • Quarterly – assist with Museum Gift Shop inventory
  • Weekly filing of invoices and reimbursement records
  • Maintain list of certificates of insurance from outside agencies and vendors.
  • Update Museum inventory
  • Attend quarterly All Staff meetings

Responsibilities for the Development and Communications Department comprise approximately 10% of this position’s time.  Those responsibilities include but are not limited to:

  • Respond to and process requests for donations from schools and other non-profit organizations.
  • Purchase materials and create gift baskets for donors and non-profit auctions.
  • Distribute Museum newsletters, field trip guides, and event posters to businesses & schools.

Physical Working Conditions:

  • Must be able to drive (using own car or Museum vehicle), have the ability to lift 30 lbs., stand on feet for long periods, and have good stamina.

Job Requirements:

  • BA preferred; relevant work experience may substitute.
  • Must possess and maintain a valid Washington State Driver’s license and good driving record, provide proof of insurance, and have own vehicle.
  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Ability to research and make informed decisions about purchases.
  • Proficient with computers and Microsoft Office, especially MS Excel.
  • Must be able to pass background check.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills, and math competency.
  • Ability to prioritize tasks with potentially competing deadlines, events, and departments.
  • High level of organization skills, enthusiasm, and flexibility.
  • Proactive, positive problem-solving skills.
  • Must be fully vaccinated for COVID and provide proof upon hire.

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references to employment@hocm.org

Café Assistant

Position Overview:

This position supports the Café Team to ensure the museum café operates efficiently, safely and with optimal customer service. Performs daily café operations according to procedures including: opening and closing processes; processing sales transactions; food handling & preparation; cleaning; assisting with inventory or other assigned café duties. Demonstrates excellence in communication and customer service.

Our Playday Café offers salads, sandwiches, grilled paninis and quesadillas, soup, coffee, and other grab and go options in a family focused environment. Daily service hours typically end at 4pm, with occasional evening events.

Job Requirements:

  • High School Diploma
  • 1-year experience in a quick service restaurant, including using POS system.
  • Understanding of proper food preparation, storage and handling procedures.
  • Excellent customer service skills required.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Excellent initiative and problem-solving skills.
  • Able to work independently with limited direction in a fast-paced environment with a great deal of flexibility.
  • Ability to work in a team setting with a high degree of daily communication required. Must care about and value the viewpoints of the other team members and organizational mission.
  • Required to be fully vaccinated for Covid-19 and must provide proof of vaccination upon hire.

To apply: please submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references to employment@hocm.org.

Hands On Children’s Museum exhibits, programs and employment are available to all without discrimination.

Custodian and Gallery Services Assistant

Position Overview:

This important position is responsible for ensuring a great visitor experience by maintaining the Museum’s beautiful LEED Gold facility. We are looking for a cleaning wizard who loves to stay organized. This position will maintain the cleanliness of the building, galleries, and classrooms, sanitize exhibits, organize supplies, and maintain storage areas. Responsible for participating in special museum events, programs, projects.

Knowledge, Skills & Talents

  • Must love to clean and organize!
  • Must be able to work independently and multi-task in a vibrant, fast-paced environment.
  • Must be friendly and kind to Museum visitors, parents/caregivers, and community members.
  • Ability to work in a team setting where a high degree of daily communication is required. Supportive and caring of other staff, visitors, and their viewpoints.
  • High level of energy, enthusiasm, flexibility, and patience.
  • Supportive of the Museum’s mission to inspire young children to love to learn.

Typical Job Duties

  • Daily morning set of the museum.
  • Daily morning sanitizing of touch surfaces throughout the museum galleries/exhibits.
  • Performs regular restroom cleaning & restocking.
  • Performs prop sanitation on a daily rotating schedule.
  • Launders rags, mop heads, aprons, and tablecloths throughout the week.
  • Gathers and empties garbage throughout the public spaces.
  • Respond immediately to safety issues such as lost children, ringing door or fire alarms, bodily fluid spills, injuries, or other emergencies.
  • Supports Café operations including maintaining tables, floors, and counters.
  • Cleans up bodily fluid accidents and mops and sweeps in galleries on an as-called basis.
  • Restock and maintain janitorial and laundry spaces keeping them clean and organized.
  • Assist with classroom set-up and breakdown according to museum program schedules.
  • Cleans shared staff spaces including staff kitchen, stairwells, and storage areas.

Minimum Qualifications

  • HS Diploma or equivalent; Associate degree preferred.
  • Must be able to stand on feet and move swiftly around the facility for the entire shift. Ability to lift 50 lbs.
  • Must be able to pass a background check and have reliable transportation.

Job Requirements

  • At least 1-year experience in janitorial/custodial work. Work history reflects stability.
  • Has strong work ethic with high level of dependability.
  • Professional appearance.
  • Thrive in a face-paced, often noisy environment.
  • Covid-19 vaccination

Hours: PT – Position is part time hours, to include Sunday and Monday. Back up and on call hours may be scheduled.

Compensation: $13.69-$15 hour

Benefits: Benefit Package Available

Reports to: Operations Manager/Manager On Duty

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references to employment@hocm.org.

Museum Receptionists

Overview of the Positions:

We are looking for reliable, flexible, positive, and outgoing team members to join our front desk team. Our Front Desk Receptionists will cheerfully greet & interact with visitors, sell memberships and education programs, process admissions and reservations for Museum programs & events.

Qualifications & Experience:

Previously demonstrated excellence in customer service and the ability to work in a fast-paced environment are a must for this fun, front line position. Other requirements include:

  • HS diploma required
  • Minimum 1-2 years of customer service and cash handling experience
  • Attention to detail and accuracy
  • Strong verbal and interpersonal skills
  • Proficient using Microsoft Office
  • Experience with Point-of-Sale or retail software and answering phones a plus
  • Covid-19 vaccination

Candidates must have weekday and weekend availability. These are part-time positions and hours vary and depend on Museum programming and visitation demands so dependability and flexibility are a must. EOE. No phone calls, please.

To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and 3 professional references employment@hocm.org.

Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion

Non-Discrimination Policy: Hands On Children’s Museum exhibits, education programs, and employment are available to all without discrimination.

Equal Opportunity Statement: Hands On Children’s Museum is committed to the policy of equal opportunity in employment. It is our policy to recruit and employ qualified persons on the basis of merit without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, ancestry, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, military or honorably discharged veteran status, or any other protected class as set forth under applicable state and federal civil rights laws. Employment decisions will be based on the individual’s qualifications to perform the job. This policy of nondiscrimination applies to employment, training, compensation, promotion, transfer and all other conditions of employment.