Become a Business Administrative Assistant
If you enjoy keeping things in order and like being part of a team, this job could suit you perfectly. As an administrative assistant, you would be making sure that day-to-day office tasks run smoothly. So it is important that you are organised, accurate and pay close attention to detail. Entry requirements can vary a lot between employers. Some may prefer you to have GCSEs including maths and English, and others may test your keyboard, filing and telephone skills instead of asking for qualifications. You will do most of your training while you are working. Almost every kind of company and organisation in the UK employs administrative assistants, so once you are experienced you could work anywhere, from a small business to a large employer such as the civil service or NHS.
The tasks you might have include:
- Dealing with post
- Making sure that there is enough stationery
- Answering the telephone and passing on calls
- Reception duties such as greeting and looking after visitors
- Typing and setting up documents such as letters and reports
- Keeping computer records up to date
- Using office equipment such as printers, photocopiers and fax machines
- Managing staff appointments
- Setting up meetings and taking minutes
- Making travel arrangements for staff
In some jobs you might only do a few of these tasks, and in others you might carry out all the administrative duties in your department. You may be known by various other job titles such as clerical assistant or office administrator.
In most full-time jobs you would work between 35 and 40 hours a week, Monday to Friday. Flexible hours, part-time work and temporary work are widely available. You would work in an office and spend a lot of your time using a computer.
Salaries can be between £12,000 and £20,000* a year, depending on where you work and what your duties are.
*Figures are intended as a guideline only.
Entry requirements can vary between employers. Some may look for GCSEs, including maths and English, and others may test your keyboard, filing and telephone skills at interview. Temporary work, or temping, can be a good way of getting experience that could lead to a permanent job. You may also find it helpful to take a full or part-time college or private training provider course in administration before you look for office work, although this is not essential. Courses include the Award, Certificate or Diploma in Business and Administration at levels 1,2 or 3. Typical units include:
- Producing documents and reports
- Maintaining and restocking office supplies
- Using information
- Email and diary systems
- Planning and organising meetings
- Using office equipment.
You may be able to become an administrative assistant through an Apprenticeship scheme.
Training and development
Once working, you will be given induction training, covering your organisation’s office systems and procedures.
Your employer may offer further opportunities to take training towards qualifications like those outlined in the entry section and towards recognised IT qualifications like CLAiT Plus or the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL).
Skills, interests and qualities
To be an administrative assistant you will need to have:
- An organised approach and excellent time management skills
- Good communication skills
- The ability to work well as part of a team
- Computer literacy and good typing skills
- A good level of English spelling and grammar
- Accuracy and attention to detail
- The ability to use your own initiative but also know when matters need to be referred to a supervisor
What progression opportunities are available?
You could progress to an advanced apprenticeship at Level 3 and you can also take qualifications that allow you to specialise in particular areas, for example legal, financial or medical administration.
Almost every kind of company and organisation in the UK employs administrative assistants. You could work anywhere, from a small business to a large employer such as the civil service or NHS. Jobs are advertised in the local papers, Jobcentre Plus and recruitment agencies. In larger organisations, you could be promoted to administrative officer, secretary, supervisor or office manager. In some companies you could move to other departments such as accounting or IT.
For further information contact firstname.lastname@example.org Or telephone 01642 804000
- If you enjoy keeping things in order and like being part of a team, this job could suit you perfectly. As an administrative assistant, you would be making sure that day-to-day office tasks run smoothly.
WORKING HOURS AND CONDITIONS
- You would normally work between 35 and 40 hours a week.
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