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Bookstore Manager


Retail Services

Effective Date: May 31, 2006
Grade: USG 12 Reports to: Director Retail Services

General Accountability

The Bookstore Manager is accountable to the Director of Retail Services for the development, operation, and management of the UW Bookstore. Duties include the provision of academic content through traditional and emerging means, identification of emerging technologies which impact teaching and learning, management and operation of the retail delivery systems, strategic planning, financial management, administration, marketing and operation of technology applications for all UW Bookstore services

Nature and Scope

Also reporting to the Director of Retail Services are the Information Systems Administrator, CampusTechshop Manager, General Merchandise Manager, Accounting Manager, Marketing Manager, and Receiving & Shipping Manager.

The Bookstore Manager works collaboratively with the Retail Services management team on identifying opportunities that support the University’s academic mission and the Retail Services mission statement.  This includes, but is not limited to, new academic services, business growth, continual improvement, collaborative external and internal partnerships, a focus on customer service and the evaluation of existing services.

Reporting to the Bookstore Manager are the Operations Co-ordinator, two Course Book buyers and the General Book buyer. Reporting to the Operations Co-ordinator are two Customer Service staff, POS Customer Service staff and casual part-time student staff.  The Bookstore employs 7 full-time staff, 10 regular casual staff, and approximately  75 students hired annually to work during peak periods in September and January.

The Bookstore Manager oversees three departments within the Bookstore , Course Books  (including Distance Education textbooks and courseware), General Books and Courseware.

The Bookstore provides content for over 2,500 course adoption titles and stocks $1.5M of on-hand textbook and courseware inventory for on-campus lectures, the School of Architecture, Distance Education courses, and the MBET program.  The Bookstore manager oversees the sell through, adoption process and timely availability of course content.

The Bookstore is a significant source of academic content for students and faculties.  Numerous traditional, current and emerging content delivery methods form the Bookstore’s approach to the support of contemporary pedagogy.   

The incumbent oversees the development, strategic direction and vision for integration of  traditional content delivery, digital content and other emerging technology delivery methods for academic content while balancing the financial viability of the Bookstore. The Bookstore serves 21,000 current undergraduate students and 2,300 current graduate students each year.

The Bookstore Manager must have a good working relationship with current and prospective students, Deans, department Chairs, faculty members and faculty programs in order to communicate relevant information and promote Bookstore services to students, faculty and staff.  The incumbent must possess in-depth knowledge of academic publishing, general books publishing, digital content delivery, digital rights management and emerging technologies for content delivery.  The Bookstore Manager is responsible for effective communication with the campus community, publishing community, industry associations and other content providers.

In the General Books department, over 20,000 titles are stocked including reference, fiction, non-fiction and remainder titles.  Approximately $300,000 of general books inventory is available on hand.  The Bookstore specializes in Special Order requests and processes over $90,000 of specialized reference titles or specific requests.  In addition to in-store customer service, the Bookstore is responsible for off-site book selling at campus lectures, author reading series, or at the request of faculty or departmental special events.

Statistical Data

The Bookstore is an ancillary operation, the largest academic support unit within Retail Services and generates $11 million annual revenue.  The Bookstore Manager is responsible for an expense budget as follows:

Cost of Goods Sold



$   600,000

Operating Expenses

$ 1,400,000

Specific Accountabilities

-Provides strong leadership in the management of Bookstore staff. Supervises, develops and evaluates all bookstore full-time staff including hiring, staff performance and disciplinary issues. 

-Develops, implements and evaluates business strategies, marketing strategies, communication strategies, financial budgets and business plans that result in cost effective delivery of services and sound financial results.

-Manages an annual budget of $11M.

-Manages purchasing/inventory controls, effective inventory turnover,  weborders/ecommerce sales, satellite location sales, and general books events sales.

-Manages the textbook selection, adoption and acquisition process.   

-Develops and maintains co-operative relationships with faculty, students, administrators, off-campus organizations and the Retail Services management team.

-Manages external relationships in the academic community, publishing industry and industry associations for the advancement of Bookstore services.

-Evaluates and implements continual improvement through interaction with industry associations such as CCRA, CSC and NACS and utilizes benchmarking of industry standards.

-Develops and implements procedures to maximize excellent customer service.

-Works collaboratively with the Director of Retail Services, and the Retail Services management team to ensure financial and operational accountability, development of Retail Services and Bookstore policies/procedures, and the utilization of the capabilities of Visual Ratex and Watpos for sales, ordering and inventory management.

Working Conditions