How To Become An Administrator
A Job With Great Market Value
Despite the role of an administrator being often overlooked, Administrators are crucial to the effective and efficient day-to-day operations of any organisation.
Those working as an administrator will usually be responsible for supporting their organisation in a variety of ways including bookkeeping, communications, scheduling, data entry, secretarial services and much more.
As you can see the role of an administrator varies greatly, without even considering the additional variations due to the sector, size of the employer and levels of responsibility required, but overall a key attribute of all great administrators is the ability to be able to multitask.
Administrators collaborate with colleagues, oversee the operations within the company, communicate with varying management levels, and take part in planning the needs of the organisation.
Any issues which arise around office resource or administrative tasks, they are more than likely expected to take ownership of and deal with the situation.
What does an Administrator do?
While it can be difficult to generalise, most administrators will be expected to:
- Use a word processing package such as Microsoft Word.
- Audio and copy type.
- Write letters.
- Deal with telephone and email enquiries, using an email system (e.g. Outlook).
- Photocopy and print various documents, sometimes on behalf of other colleagues.
- Organise and store paperwork, documents and computer-based information.
- Create and maintain filing and other office systems.
- Keep diaries and arrange appointments.
- Schedule and attend meetings, create agendas, organise refreshments, and take minutes - shorthand may be required book meeting room and conference facilities.
- Liaise with staff in other departments and with external contacts.
- Order and maintain stationery and equipment.
- Use a variety of software packages (including Excel, Sage and Powerpoint) to manage data and perform bookkeeping tasks, and create presentations.
- Use content management systems (CMS) to maintain and update websites and internal databases.
- Organise detailed travel itineraries for business directors and time schedules for employee events.
What hours do Administrators work?
Administrators usually work a regular 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday week, covering a typical 35-40 hour week.
Flexible work hours can often be arranged in business development roles should this be a requirement.
Interim, part-time and temporary roles are common. Career breaks are possible if skills are maintained.
What skills do Administrators need to have?
- Great attention to detail.
- The ability to remain calm under pressure.
- Excellent organisational skills.
- Oral and written communication skills.
- Tact, discretion and respect for confidentiality.
- A pleasant, confident telephone manner.
- Team player.
- Willing to show initiative.
- Reliability and honesty.
- A thorough and methodical approach to your work.
How much does an Administrator earn?
Salaries vary due to different companies and type of administrator job you are in. For example an office administrator in the UK ranges from £7,500 to £36,000 a year according to Indeed (on the 15th May 2019) with the average coming out at £18,797 a year. The average pay for an Administrative Assistant is £18,211 per year and a Receptionist earns an average salary of £19,706 per year.
Administrators know more about how the company runs than most employees. This means they are often in line for promotion and career progression.
What are the different types of job available to administrators?
- Receptionist: You are the first face clients and employees are likely to see each day so a friendly manner is essential. Work is usually performed in a waiting area such as a lobby or front office desk of an organisation or business.
- Admin Assistant: This is probably the role you think about when someone tells you they are an administrator. It is deemed to be one of the less glamorous roles within a company, but admin assistants are indispensable as they help the company run smoothly.
It is a mid-level role that involves setting up meetings, making travel arrangements, sales support, accounting and much more – view our current Admin Assistant Jobs here.
- Office Manager: As an office manager is to oversee the administrative activities that facilitate the smooth running of an office, organising people, information and other resources.
You'll ensure that office equipment is maintained to the appropriate quality and quantity, relevant records are up to date and all administrative processes work effectively.
- Personal Assistant: As a personal assistant (PA) you'll work closely with senior managerial or directorial staff to provide administrative support, usually on a one-to-one basis. You'll help a manager to make the best use of their time by dealing with secretarial and administrative tasks.
PAs need extensive knowledge of the organisation in which they work. You'll need to know who key personnel are, both external and internal, and understand the organisation's aims and objectives.
What knowledge and experience is required?
Relevant experience is often more highly valued than administrative qualifications, although excellent IT and typing skills will always be an essential requirement.
Temporary roles are usually plentiful and can more often than not lead to permanent employment with in the organisation.
Employers value experience and a mature attitude in this field of work, so mature entry and an established work history are likely to be useful for more senior roles.
Is it the right job for me?
If you find yourself struggling to do more than one or two things at a time, get distracted or find your concentration wavers then maybe this role isn’t quite right for you.
If you’re great at multitasking, enjoy juggling different projects at the same time then this is a role you should definitely consider and a great way to get your foot in the door of a company you would like to progress within.
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