JOB ALERT: Digitization Specialist - Full-Time, Temporary

Digitization Specialist, DigIn

Full-Time, Temporary

Los Angeles, CA, US


The Natural History Museum of LA County (NHMLAC) seeks a Digitization Specialist for the NSF-funded project DigIn: Digitizing Marine Invertebrates. Over the next four years, the DigIn project team at NHMLAC will digitize and georeference 320,000 specimen and lot records and move data online as part of a 19-institution network.  NHMLAC  was the first museum in L.A. to open its doors 109 years ago and is poised for an exciting new era as it plans for the future. Having recently completed a new strategic framework, the Natural History Museums of Los Angeles County—including the Natural History Museum in Exposition Park, La Brea Tar Pits and Museum in mid-Wilshire, and the William S. Hart Museum in Newhall—is looking forward to new collections and research initiatives, building projects and campaigns, exhibitions, community outreach, and innovative audience engagement.

The Digitization Specialist will lead a team of digitizers (potentially including staff, students, interns, and volunteers).  Working with curators and collection managers in NHMLAC’s invertebrate zoology collections, the Digitization Specialist will develop and implement workflows for specimen handling, digitizing, and data entry, develop and maintain custom databases and data refinement procedures, and will maintain a high level of quality throughout the team.  The Digitization Specialist will work closely with NHMLAC’s Database Manager, the DigIn Digitization Project Manager, DigIn PI, and staff at other institutions to move NHMLAC data through the DigIn data pipeline.  As a core part of the DigIn team, the Digitization Specialist will participate in DigIn consortium working groups, meetings, and outreach workshops on behalf of NHMLAC.

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County values and endeavors to support diversity, equity, inclusion, and access within its organization and communities. Candidates who identify as Black, Indigenous, or a Person of Color (BIPOC), neurodiverse, a woman, a person with a disability, a veteran, and/or a part of the LGBTQAI+ community are welcome and encouraged to apply.  We are especially interested in candidates whose background and experience have prepared them to contribute to our commitment to engage and include culturally diverse audiences in museums and in science.  It is an exciting time as we embark on new journeys of becoming a museum of, for, and with L.A.



  • Lead team of digitizers accomplishing grant-funded project “DigIn: Digitizing Marine Invertebrate Collections”, overseeing the digitization process from jar to database.  Recruits, trains and functionally supervises digitizers.  Ensures appropriate handling of specimens and maintains high standards for overall collection care.

  • Develops and/or implements workflows to ensure accuracy and consistency across team members.  Troubleshoots, problem-solves, and coordinates with collections staff to update workflows and processes as needed.  Creates and maintains procedures for data quality control, refinement, and transformation from raw data collection to final database entries.

  • Develops, maintains, and modifies custom database systems to ensure that digitized data are entered with a high degree of accuracy.  Works closely with Database Manager, DigIn Digitization Project Manager, DigIn PI, and DigIn georeferencing leads to ensure NHMLA data are entered and formatted correctly and move through to the iDigBio and GBIF portals and to other external aggregators.

  • Develops and delivers staff training, manages crowd-sourced or contractor processes for transcription, oversees georeferencing, participates in DigIn consortium meetings and working groups, assists in development and production of DigIn outreach activities and workshops.

  • Participates in and supports the department’s and the institution’s work to increase inclusion, diversity, equity, and access (IDEA).



  • Experience and education equivalent to a bachelor’s degree in a related field with 3 years experience working with natural history collections and associated data.

  • Working to expert knowledge of principles of databases and biodiversity informatics.  Working knowledge of software and data management tools typically used in natural history collections. Ability to create data refinement pipelines for bioinformatic records using industry standard tools (e.g., R, Python, OpenRefine).

  • Basic to working knowledge of biological taxonomy.

  • Working knowledge of the organization of natural history collections and typical storage conditions for specimens.

  • Demonstrated excellence in oral and written communication.

  • Ability to write clear technical procedures and professional correspondence.  

  • Experience training and supervising a diverse team of staff, volunteers, and students.



  • Experience and education equivalent to a master’s degree in a related field with 5 years experience working with natural history collections and associated data.

  • Demonstrated ability to design and implement databased-backed data collection and management systems and code-driven data processing pipelines.

  • Working knowledge of external data resources and repositories such as WoRMs, GBIF, and iDigBio.

  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, access and inclusion work.

  • demonstrated ability to design, implement, and revise user documentation for complex technical procedures.

  • Ability to effectively present technical information to and respond to questions from colleagues.



The salary range for this position is $64,400–66,560.  This is a full-time, temporary, exempt position with excellent benefits. The position is funded for three years with a possibility of extension.  Candidates must be eligible to work in the United States.

This position is located at the main NHM building in Exposition Park in Los Angeles.  Some travel to off-site locations may be required.

Applicants and employees are invited to identify reasonable accommodations that can be made to assist them to perform the essential functions of the position they seek or occupy. The incumbent must be able to perform this job safely, with reasonable accommodation if necessary, without endangering the health or safety of him/herself or others.

Application review will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Submit a current resume, a cover letter describing how your experience, knowledge, and interest qualify you for this position, and the names and contact information of three professional references through the Museum’s employment site at

The NHMLAC established a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for staff effective August 10, 2021. NHMLAC is requiring that all staff receive the vaccine for COVID-19 as a condition of employment. Exemptions for documented medical reasons or a sincerely held religious belief may be requested.

The Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Please contact for any application inquiries.