Assistant Shelter Manager

Job Title: Assistant Shelter Manager

Department:  Shelter

Classification: Full-time, exempt

Job Relationship: Reports to Shelter Manager. Supervises Admissions, Adoptions, Animal Care, Animal Wellness and Flow, and Behavior supervisors.  Oversees volunteers assigned to animal care programs. Works closely with Volunteer Manager and Development team.

Position Summary:   Under supervision of the Shelter Manager, oversees day-to-day operations of the animal care, behavior, flow, and client service programs (Admissions and Adoptions) to ensure that our quality of care, service, and performance meet the needs of our animals, clients, and organization.  Oversees volunteers assigned to all animal care programs.  Supervises, trains, coaches, and develops staff and volunteers to meet departmental goals.  Provides high quality animal care and excellent people care in accordance with APL mission, goals, and management philosophy.  Effectively manages resources for the maximum benefit to the department and the APL.

Essential Job Functions:

Manages all aspects of client flow and experience to ensure that consistent, high-quality services are provided to clients, visitors, staff, and volunteers

  • Ensures quality client services and experiences are provided to clients, visitors, staff, and volunteers.
  • Responds to client concerns directly or via telephone or email in a timely manner using effective service recovery techniques and strategies.
  • Responsible for maintaining the professional appearance of all client service areas.
  • Creates and updates client service program information for distribution ensuring it is accurate and current.
  • Assists staff in situations requiring immediate problem solving. Handles escalated client situations.  Takes control of situations and keeps supervisor informed of situations that could be damaging to the professional image of the APL
  • Models “Compassion” core value behavior: Treats animals & people with respect, empathy, and kindness. Listens and responds to the needs of people who surrender animals to us, use our programs and services, support us, work, and volunteer for us, and to other animal welfare organizations that turn to us for help.
  • Provides customer service training and orientation to staff and volunteers.

Manages animal care operations to ensure optimal care and flow is provided to all animals

  • Ensures employees are providing an optimal standard of care (i.e., food, water, enrichment, sanitation, infectious disease control, and safety) to all animals sheltered at the APL.
  • Ensures all animal, APL shelter, and state protocols, policies and procedures are being followed.
  • Responsible for maintaining the professional appearance and cleanliness of all animal care areas.
  • Communicates with all departments regarding animal care and welfare issues. Alerts supervisor to potential population crises, disease epidemics, or other factors that may compromise the APL’s goal of continually increasing our live release rate.
  • Oversees timeliness of animal processing and care. Evaluates and improves animal care and flow processes.
  • Monitors animal population status, flow, and inventory. Communicates with other departments (Clinic, Humane Investigations) to troubleshoot and optimize progress through shelter.
  • Oversees animal handling, sanitation, and disease control protocols.
  • Makes recommendations for final disposition of the animals: adoption, foster care, medical care, transfer, and euthanasia.
  • Euthanasia certified. Performs euthanasia and trains staff for euthanasia certification.
  • Monitors Bridge Room usage and ensure e-techs are compliant with protocols and maintain high standard of humane performance and room maintenance.

 Manages shelter staff and builds an effective team

  • Provides direct supervision to the animal care, admissions, wellness and flow, behavior, and adoptions supervisors. Assesses, respects, and addresses staff needs immediately.
  • Ensures compliance with APL animal care, safety, and personnel practices and procedures.
  • Performs supervisory duties, including reviewing work performance, motivating subordinates to work more effectively, identifying problems with performance and solutions to those problems, determining training needs to improve performance, initiating measures to correct misconduct per APL policy. Carries out approved disciplinary actions.
  • Works with Shelter Manager to develop annual goals for department staff that includes timelines, procedures, and accountabilities.
  • Provides guidance and support to staff in meeting goals.
  • Works with Shelter Manager to resolve staff personnel issues.
  • Provides orientation, training, coaching and supervision to employees, volunteers, and students. Prepares and presents necessary evaluations and performance appraisals.
  • Conducts training for staff and volunteers on animal and client care.
  • In conjunction with Shelter Manager and human resources, interviews and hires new staff members.
  • Performs the duties of subordinate employees as needed.

 Performs operational and administrative support functions.

  • Tracks and reports on progress toward achieving department goals.
  • Oversees revenue collection and record keeping for client service programs.
  • Consults with Shelter Manager on department needs, e.g., purchases of equipment and/or supplies and materials for department.
  • Actively promotes the APL’s mission, services, programs, and events. Informs clients and constituents of donation opportunities and cultivates relationships with current and potential donors.
  • Always represents the APL in a professional and courteous manner.
  • Supports management and discusses differences privately.
  • Communicates with the Senior Director of Operations about significant developments within the department.
  • Attends necessary meetings.
  • Is visible to staff, communicates with directors on significant developments within the department
  • Communicates pertinent information to staff, managers, directors, and CEO.
  • Communicates, identifies challenges, and problem solves with other managers.
  • Develops and follows timelines for annual plans and projects.
  • Ensures that policies and procedures are being followed.
  • Provides quality service to clients, volunteers, and staff recognizing their contribution to the APL’s success.
  • Creates, promotes, and follows safety guidelines to ensure a safe work environment. Takes immediate action to address any safety concern or noncompliance with OSHA safety rules that could put an employee, volunteer, client, animal, and organization at risk.
  • Promotes a safe, inclusive, equitable work environment.
  • Promotes communication and cooperation between APL departments and integration and utilization of volunteers.
  • Actively monitors safety compliance of staff and takes immediate action to correct hazards.
  • Refers board or media inquiries to CEO.
  • Ability to handle confidential information and use discretion.
  • Is flexible with scheduling.
  • Fear Free Certified or must become certified within six months of hire
  • Supports the APL’s desire to celebrate a diverse and inclusive culture that fuels the compassion that connects us to one another.

This position description in no way states or implies that these are the only duties to be performed by the employee occupying this position.  Employees will be required to follow any other job-related duties required by their supervisor.

This document does not create an employment contract implied or otherwise, other than an “at-will” relationship.


  • Associates degree preferred.
  • Minimum of two years demonstrated supervisory experience and proven success in managing operations, services, customer service, and supervising personnel preferably in animal welfare or animal services.
  • Certified euthanasia technician (or completes certification within 6 months of hire).
  • Minimum two years customer service experience.
  • Must possess a valid Ohio Driver’s License and insurable driving record.

Knowledge and Skills

  • Knowledge of effective management techniques and ability to utilize them to promote full performance and high morale.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment with a variety of people
  • Considerable interpersonal skills including the ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships and to effectively handle and diffuse high-stress and emotionally charged situations
  • Ability to identify and understand problems and determine appropriate measures to solve them.
  • Efficient Microsoft Office user able to maintain and use a variety of records to prepare statistical and other reports
  • Experience in animal behavior, health, handling, & care in a shelter environment strongly preferred
  • Excellent communication and leadership skills. Ability to express ideas clearly, both orally and in writing.  Exercises good judgment when dealing with the public, staff, and volunteers.
  • Detail oriented. Able to prioritize and perform duties efficiently and effectively with appropriate independence
  • Committed to maintaining the integrity of the APL’s client service programs, high standard of animal care, and promoting our mission to foster compassion and end animal suffering