Cultural Assistant — Athlone Castle — 2 year fixed term contract | Opportunities | Athlone Arts and Tourism

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Cultural Assistant — Athlone Castle — 2 year fixed term contract

ATHLONE ARTS & TOURISM LTD

Athlone Arts & Tourism operates Athlone Castle, Luan Gallery and Abbey Road Artists’ Studios. These sites managed by Athlone Arts and Tourism Ltd are of major significance to the cultural landscape of Athlone and the region. 

Athlone Arts & Tourism is seeking to appoint a Cultural Assistant for Athlone Castle.

Details and particulars of the post are set out hereunder:

The Role

A Cultural Assistant is required to work under the management of Athlone Arts & Tourism and will be primarily located at Athlone Castle.

The successful candidate will have a minimum of a third level qualification (certificate) in history, heritage/cultural tourism or a related subject and must have the ability to promote interest and engagement in the history of Athlone and the region. The Cultural Assistant will be required to undertake a range of duties including; customer service, ticketing, tour guiding, sales, retail/café, administration, marketing and event coordination and delivery.

Previous experience in customer service and tour guiding in a visitor attraction, heritage site, museum or related environment is essential. Applicants will bring with them previous customer service experience, willingness to learn and a friendly, outgoing personality. 

 

KEY JOB RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Customer Services: Ensuring a warm welcome to visitors, tour operators and group leaders and assisting groups to visit, experience and exit the site.
  • Tour Guiding: conducting guided introductions, guided tours of Athlone Castle, costumed storytelling and engaging with and interpreting the castle story to visitors of Athlone Castle. Gaining an in-depth knowledge of the history and story of Athlone Castle, Athlone and Ireland’s Ancient East to pass on to visitors is a core function of this position.
  • Reception/ticketing: Front of house duties involving; till operations, cash handling, record taking, reporting, data collection (visitor profile research) and visitor information.
  • Retail: Café and gift shop, including till operations, cash handling, merchandising, stocktaking and other retail activities as directed by senior staff and management.
  • Sales:  Cash handling, targeting new and recurring customers i.e. tour operators, coach groups, special interest groups, schools, third level students, liaising with agencies and local and regional tourism trade in respect of rates, offers, events etc.
  • Customers/Suppliers: dealing with set-up, liaison, bookings, administration of customer and supplier accounts.
  • Administration: Administrative duties such as gathering data on visitors, issuing emails, developing databases, filing, generating reports, research and development, managing the booking system etc will be required.
  • Marketing: Social media and ongoing marketing efforts will be required.
  • Facilities Management – To ensure all facilities, grounds, public areas are clean and functioning, conducting regular and recorded checks of all areas.
  • Events: Assisting the Cultural Officer, Management, staff and volunteers in the coordination, delivery and manning of successful events. Events duties may also include; café duties, catering, meet and greet roles, dealing with media, guest list management, decoration, invigilation, costumed guiding, visual recording etc.
  • Cultural Assistant must have a flexible approach to work, and be adaptable to carry out duties in other tourism amenities / facilities associated with Athlone Arts & Tourism as required by the Manager. 
  • The ability to provide First Aid is necessary (training will be provided).
  • An excellent standard and comprehension of key principals of customer service is essential.
  • All other duties as assigned by Management.

The above duties outline the main functions and responsibilities of the post of Cultural Assistant and may be subject to review in the future.

 

Conditions of Employment

 

  • The Cultural Assistant will be employed on the basis of a fixed term contract for two years with an initial probationary period of 2 months and will be subject to one month’s notice in writing on either side and depending on continuing finance being available.
  • Duty at weekends and at night (as required) will be an integral part of the working week.
  • An hourly rate of €10.75 per hour Mon to Sat and €11.82 per hour on Sun will apply with a varied number of hours per week based on a roster system. 
  • Applicants must have the flexibility to work hours in line with the seasonal and operational considerations of the attractions/facilities. 
  • A standby roster arrangement will be operated. Applicants will be required to work weekends and evening events. 
  • Physical demands of the role include standing, walking, delivering guided tours, delivering workshops and carrying objects and merchandise.
  • Applicants must be flexible with both their time and approach to work and be comfortable carrying out a variety of tasks.

Full terms and conditions will be provided with contract at time of appointment. 

 

QUALIFICATIONS

Character 

Candidate must be of good character.

Health

Each candidate must be in a state of health such as would indicate a reasonable prospect of ability to render regular and efficient service.

Essential Education/Experience

Each candidate should have:

  • A minimum of 2 years in a customer services and cash handling role.
  • A minimum of a third level qualification (certificate) in history, heritage/cultural tourism or a related subject.
  • Computer/IT competency to manage an integrated PC based booking system and till operation. 
  • Previous experience in tour guiding in a visitor attraction, heritage site, museum or related environment.
  • The ability to manage ticketing, reporting and cash handling procedures as they relate to a visitor attraction.
  • The ability and confidence to provide guided tours of and around all tourist attractions and facilities associated with Athlone Arts & Tourism.
  • The capacity to interact effectively and in a friendly professional manner with people from a broad range of sectors and groups, including local tourism trade.
  • The ability to manage and grow tourism bookings online, over the phone and by direct contact with customers and others from the tourism sector.
  • Fluency in English.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
  • The capacity to work on own initiative and to contribute well in a team based environment.

Desirable Education/Experience etc.

  • A good basic knowledge of the history of Athlone Castle, Athlone and connected sites in the region.
  • An understanding of the opportunities afforded by social media for tourism marketing and development and visitor servicing.
  • Conversational skills/fluency in additional languages.
  • Hold a current clean Category B driving licence and have the use of a car.

 

RECRUITMENT

 

  • Selection shall be by means of a competition based on an interview conducted by or on behalf of Athlone Arts & Tourism Ltd.
  • Short listing will be applied where necessary on the basis of information supplied by candidates. 
  • A panel maybe formed on the basis of such interviews.
  • Interviews will be held in the last week of February/first week in March.
  • Candidates must be available to start in early March 2018.
  • Appointment will be subject to the receipt of satisfactory Garda Vetting and references.

Application Procedure

Applicants to send two copies of their Curriculum Vitae and a cover letter (including 2 x references) outlining their specific experience as it relates to the role by 5pm on  Friday 23rd February 2018 to;

The Manager,
Athlone Arts & Tourism,
C/o Luan Gallery,
Grace Road,
Athlone,
Co. Westmeath.

Please note an email confirmation of receipt of application will be sent. 

Canvassing will immediately disqualify candidate.