An administrative assistant may have many various duties in an office setting, depending on a number of factors including the size of the office and the number of other employees. However, many administrative assistant duties are the same in all settings. These will include, on the most basic level, assisting your employer with daily office tasks.
Typically, administrative assistant duties include such tasks as answering phones and transferring calls, setting up appointments, answering questions, greeting customers or clients when they arrive at the office, and keeping the appearance of the office clean and tidy. Other duties might include filling out or preparing documents, filing documents, sorting mail, and maintaining records. Administrative assistants are generally always required to be proficient with various word processing and budgeting software, so good computer skills are generally required, along with the ability to type at least 50 words per minute.
The administrative assistant is generally the first person most people will see when they enter the office, so it is important to be friendly, courteous, and professional. Discretion and respect are other important personality traits. An administrative assistant interacts with many people throughout the day when accepting calls, mailing important documents or packages, or assisting clients, so the ability to multi-task is essential. In a larger office setting, a greater number of administrative assistant duties may be required.
Some of these extra tasks might include the supervising of other employees, coordinating and running staff meetings, maintaining an office budget, taking inventory of and ordering office supplies, and making sure any necessary tasks are completed on time. An administrative assistant may also be responsible for hiring and training new office staff, and maintaining a schedule for others in the office. Administrative assistants may also be asked to learn to handle industry specific tasks for employers such as law firms, medical offices, or banking.
A good administrative assistant will be one who can juggle the multiple administrative assistant duties while making sure that all work is completed on time. Some administrative assistants are general assistants for the entire office, while others specialize in specific fields, such as finance or marketing. A career as an administrative assistant can be a lucrative and rewarding one, and generally offers many perks such as health benefits and relatively steady hours. An administrative assistant may work full time or part time hours, depending on the needs of the office.