Main functions of an administrative assistant

Ash Baggott

Administrative assistant professionals often have to wear many hats within their job roles, and are always on hand to help out, solve problems, prepare documents, organise files, schedule appointment and sometimes, take the lead on some projects.

Whether someone is looking for a foot in the door at their favourite firm, or they’re looking to climb the ladder, administrative jobs are the backbone of any office, and can offer great levels of experience and provides them with the chance to prove their skills.

Administrative assistants tend to perform clerical duties and admin tasks to support organisations, and they’re employed across many offices in almost every sector. An admin assistant is an entry-level position within a firm, and roles are generally available to those who hold the basics of education such as GCSE’s, good communicative skills, and computer skills. However, it may be beneficial for them to hold specific knowledge about the sector they’re going to be working in. 

This role is perfect for those who wish to enter their working lives rather than continuing their studies post-high school, it comes with interesting and challenging tasks to keep them engaged.

What to expect from your administrative assistant

Although it’s an entry-level role, you should aim to provide your admin assistant with responsibilities to ensure they remain engaged and motivated. Responsibility over a variety of clerical and organisational tasks is necessary to keep your business running in an efficient, and organised way. Here you can find a list of tasks you could task your administrative assistant with;

  • Greeting visitors who come to your workplace and ensure they’re comfortable throughout their visit.
  • Answering inbound calls, emails, and social media enquiries. Directing those enquiries to the correct member of staff.
  • Typing workplace documents, including letters and reports.
  • Process, and organising inboxes. Filing incoming and outgoing mails in the correct place.
  • Creating and maintaining computer records.
  • Maintaining paper files.
  • Monitoring stock levels and ordering supplies.
  • Assisting the accountant in some basic bookkeeping duties.
  • Booking meeting, seminars, and conferences.
  • Taking notes during business meetings.
  • Coordinating appointments of executives and managers.
  • Booking flights, hotel room, and restaurants for executives and managers.

What skills should your administrative assistant have?

As with any role, your employee should demonstrate a variety of skills to successfully be able to perform their duties. Below you can find some of the hard and soft skills you should look for.

  • Basic computer literacy. They will spend most of the working day on computers, so understanding how to navigate one is essential. They need to match the platform you use too, many people are familiar with Windows OR Mac, not both.
  • Organisational skills. They will rely on organising their days effectively, but they’ll need to organise other colleagues schedules too.
  • Written and oral communication. They need to feel comfortable to approach other members of staff and welcome visitors. Also, they will often compose letters, emails, and social media posts using correct grammar, spelling, and if necessary, follow your guidelines.
  • Problem-solving abilities. They will need to call on these skills if clients need to cancel meetings, appointments need adjusting, supplies don’t arrive on time, and if any other workplace emergencies arise.

If you provide your administrative assistant with lots of support, training and motivation, you might find that they will seek to progress within your company and might turn into fantastic administrative leads, managers or other senior roles within your firm. Providing them with the right tools to complete the job too is essential, take Holded’s online account software, for example. It’s an easy to use tool that will help your administrative assistant complete some of their tasks.

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