Office Assistant Job Description - What Is Administrative Assistant?

An Office Assistant, or Administrative Assistant, is responsible for performing a range of clerical and administrative tasks to support daily operations in an office setting. Their duties include sorting and distributing mail throughout the office, greeting office visitors and directing them to employees and coordinating with Managers to schedule appointments or update schedules.

Office Assistant Duties and Responsibilities

An Office Assistant is responsible for keeping the office supplied and organized. This involves lots of small duties, like typing and taking notes during meetings, but their overall responsibilities are essential. Office Assistants are responsible for things like:

  • Overseeing clerical tasks, such as sorting and sending mail
  • Keeping an inventory of office supplies and ordering new materials as needed
  • Maintaining files
  • Welcoming visitors to your office
  • Answering phone calls
  • Taking and delivering messages
  • Ensuring the office runs smoothly
  • Scheduling meetings and sending meeting invites to attendees

What Does an Office Assistant Do?

Office Assistants typically work for businesses across industries to support Office Workers and Managers. They answer and transfer phone calls, run errands on behalf of employees, make copies or fax documents. Their job is to help daily operations by taking notes during meetings and distributing meeting minutes afterward. They may also be responsible for taking inventory of office supplies and communicating with vendors to order supplies as needed.

Office Assistant job description intro paragraph

When writing an Office Assistant job description, start by introducing the job and company to prospective Office Assistants. Briefly highlight the work environment, what sets your company apart and why the role is important to your company.

For example:

“Company ABC is looking for an Office Assistant to join our downtown office. In this role, you’ll play a critical role in keeping our office a positive, welcoming and productive environment. You’ll also get the chance to interact with all levels of staff and various customers and clients.

Here at Company ABC, we’re proud to have a 4.0 star rating on Indeed Company Pages and an above average ​​Work Happiness Score from our employees. We value flexibility, autonomy and continuous learning and development.”

Office Assistant Skills and Qualifications

Office Assistants are exceptional multitaskers, and since they’re responsible for coordinating other people’s schedules, they must be incredibly well organized. Office Assistants will also need basic skills with commonly used computer software to do things like send emails, manage calendars and order supplies. Other important skills and qualifications for these professionals include:

  • Flexibility and the ability to prioritize new tasks as they come in
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Time management
  • Customer service
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Office Assistant Salary Expectations

We’ve collected Office Assistant salary data from over 100,000 employees and users on Indeed over the past 36 months. The average salary for an Office Assistant is $15.42 per hour, which for a full-time employee, is roughly $32,000 per year. Some companies hire entry-level office assistants for minimum wage, and others hire mid- or senior-level workers and pay as much as $30 per hour. Office Assistants tend to stay with one employer for up to three years.

Office Assistant Education and Training Requirements

Many Office Assistants have a high school diploma or GED. However, some may also have associate’s degrees or higher. Assistants who want to move into management roles will likely need several years of experience and/or a college degree. Some vocational schools and community colleges offer certifications for office assistants and similar roles.

In terms of training, most Office Assistants develop the skills they need through formal education or on-the-job experience. However, you may ask that applicants have experience with the types of software you use. Many popular computer programs used for things like ordering supplies or maintaining schedules or data offer certifications that candidates can complete online.

Job Description Samples for Similar Positions

If this job description isn’t quite what you’re looking for, check out our other templates. Office Assistants have lots of responsibilities and duties that overlap with other positions, so you might find something that’s a better fit for your company. Check out these job description samples for these similar positions:

  • Office clerk
  • Office coordinator
  • Executive assistant
  • Executive secretary
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Frequently asked questions about Office Assistants

What is the difference between an Office Assistant and an Executive Assistant?

The difference between Office Assistants and Executive Assistants lies in their job responsibilities. For example, Office Assistants perform clerical and administrative tasks on behalf of Office Workers and the Office Manager. Because of their job duties, Office Assistants usually need to have a high school diploma or an associate degree.

In contrast, Executive Assistants typically perform a range of clerical and administrative duties for one or a few company Executives. In addition to making copies, answering phone calls and updating schedules, Executive Assistants also have more in-depth job responsibilities like completing market research, entering data into spreadsheets and compiling reports on behalf of an Executive. Because of their additional responsibilities, Executive Assistants may hold a bachelor’s degree in business or the industry in which they work.

What are the daily duties of an Office Assistant?

On a typical day, an Office Assistant starts by checking their email and voicemail. They make a note of any missed messages from clients, employees or upper-management to relay to Office Workers. Office Assistants greet the Office Manager and Office Workers as they arrive and receive tasks to complete. Throughout the day, they answer phone calls, make copies, fax documents, organize office supplies and greet office visitors.

They participate in meetings and take notes for participants to review later on. During downtime, Office Assistants collect mail from the mailroom and distribute it throughout the office. They also do coffee or lunch-runs for employees.

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What qualities make a good Office Assistant?

A good Office Assistant has excellent written and verbal communication that allows them to compose documents like memos and participate in positive interactions with Office Workers and visitors in-person or over the phone. They also have a personable nature. Being personable is an important quality for Office Assistants as they are the first point of communication for office visitors or customers. Their behavior influences the way office visitors interpret the company.  Further, a good Office Assistant has experience working with scheduling software and office appliances that enable them to complete their job duties in an efficient manner.

Who does an Office Assistant report to?

An Office Assistant typically reports to the Office Manager to receive tasks and provide them with administrative support. Office Assistants may also indirectly report to Office Workers who need them to make document copies or send faxes.

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