Be part of something bigger at the Swarthmore CO-OP

Who are we?

The Swarthmore CO-OP is the third oldest food cooperative in the country, with a long history of serving as a community anchor and beloved neighborhood grocery store for both its members as well as non-member shoppers — “anyone can shop and anyone can join.” We place a strong emphasis on providing local and sustainably-grown/raised items and maintaining our important role as a full-service community grocery store. The CO-OP has approximately $6M in annual revenues and about 40 employees.

The Swarthmore CO-OP offers medical, dental, retirement, vacation and holiday benefits to eligible employees.

The team at Swarthmore CO-OP values diversity, and is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, national heritage, age (over 40), religion, sexual orientation or gender identity. We look forward to meeting you.

We are currently accepting applications for the following positions:

Specialty Manager

Who are we looking for?

We are seeking an enthusiastic manager/coordinator for our successful Specialty Foods Department. This role manages our specialty cheese and meats segment, imported and domestic high-end perishables, our terrific offering of local gourmet sweet treats, and special events such as our spring Beer and Cheese night, our cheese CSAs, and our customized gift baskets. S/he will carry out strategies to continually improve and update product mix, creatively and effectively drive store sales increase profitability, and manage a small team.

Our Specialty leader also ensures that products are both promoted and merchandised effectively to maximize sales and profitability. S/he provides constructive direction, guidance, and coaching to direct reports and other staff members, and ensures the Co-op is able to hire, develop, and retain great talent in an inclusive environment.

What are the key job responsibilities?


  • Directly support the store brand through product mix strategy, and ensure effective inventory control, shrink management, pricing integrity, procurement, merchandising, cross-department coordination and integration in alignment with the highest standards.
  • Seek out and develop relationships with new vendors to support store goals, and maintain strong, profitable relationships with current product vendors.


  • Work closely with executive management in decision- making and strategic planning.
  • Lead and build highly effective teams.
  • Be a role model for outstanding customer service in all areas, and instill this value in all staff members. Work to continuously improve the customer experience, and coach employees in the art of customer service.
  • Create a bustling, fun, friendly store, a community hub.
  • Help build a sense of community ownership.
  • Understand the co-operative business and organizational model and help ensure the store operates in a way that reflects co-operative principles.

Human Resources

  • Ensure that the Co-op maintains a high-performance, high-integrity culture supported by a positive, fun, safe work environment and an engaged group of team-oriented employees.
  • Direct, supervise, and coach direct reports in the performance of their key responsibilities; provide guidance and advice to all staff.
  • Hire, evaluate, and develop team member talent with the support of store leadership.

Finance and Planning

  • Be a key player in the development of annual operating budgets for store.
  • Implement operational goals, and assist GM in setting objectives for department sales, margin, inventory turns, and labor costs.
  • Review department financial performance reports with team members to ensure goals are met, and continuous process improvement is fostered.


  • Collaborate with others in the development of advertising, promotions, and marketing programs to increase public awareness of the Co-op’s products and services, and special events.
  • Execute in-store promotions, signage, and interdepartmental tie-ins to maximize sales and create a positive selling atmosphere.
  • Ensure cleanliness, safety and maintenance of Co-op’s physical premises.

What Qualifications do you bring?

  • Prefer 1-3 years in relevant management or senior team role in retail food or hospitality environment. (Experience in a co-operative or member-owned business is a plus.)
  • Strongly prefer a 2 or 4 year college degree in business, food and hospitality, or related discipline.
  • Formal culinary training may also be a qualifier.
    Ability to promote the highest standards of customer service and responsiveness.
  • Competencies in team building, fiscal oversight, and assuring execution of business operations.
  • Strategic, smart, and visionary perspective, with excellent judgment and business acumen.
  • A current ServSafe® certification or the ability to obtain one.

[This posting is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and competencies. Other duties may be assigned.]

Are you the next Specialty Manager at the Swarthmore Co-op? We’d like to talk with you! Please complete an application, and submit your resume and a cover letter, and tell us about your background and interests.

Are you interested in working at the Swarthmore CO-OP?

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