Administrative Assistant Duties and Required Skills

Administrative assistants are primarily responsible for coordinating the operational tasks of any office, ranging from medical and legal firms to schools and . The specific duties and required skills of an administrative assistant change based on their place of employment and level of expertise, but generally include a combination of clerical and managerial tasks.



The advent of technology in the modern office has greatly expanded the role of the administrative assistant, and many employers now expect job applicants to possess strong computer skills along with basic administrative training. In the past, the majority of administrative assistants honed their skills through on-the-job experience. However, with the demand for administrative assistants currently booming, interested candidates should master the basic duties of an administrative assistant prior to looking for employment.

Basic Duties & Skills

The basic duties of an administrative assistant have remained largely unchanged since the professionals were known as “secretaries”. Their main responsibility is to keep their place of employment running smoothly, thus all of their duties relate back to the operational proceedings of an office. These duties may include scheduling meetings, answering phones, managing databases, disseminating information (through email and internal memos), creating spreadsheets, generating reports, ordering equipment, and working with clients or customers.

The basic skills of an administrative assistant are directly related to the tasks they will be expected to perform. The most essential skill for an administrative assistant is communication. Successful administrative assistants are highly-skilled in typing, writing, grammar, punctuation, and oral communication (which means speaking clearly and correctly on the telephone). Interpersonal skills and client relations are also of paramount importance. Administrative assistants should also be highly organized individuals – their entire job is based around organization! Other skills include good judgement, punctuality, initiative, a good work ethic, and managerial skills.

In addition, employers now expect administrative assistants to have extensive knowledge of computer software. Programs may vary based on the employer, but usually cover word processing, desktop publishing, report generation, project management, and other such relevant applications. Individuals interested in a career as an administrative assistant should brush up on their computer skills in order to make a good impression during the application period! The most versatile candidates are the most attractive to employers.

Specific Duties & Skills

Administrative assistants enjoy a large amount of flexibility in their career path. Just as there are many different kinds of offices, there are many types of administrative assistants with expertise in a particular field. The specific duties of certain types administrative assistants are directly related to the professionals they serve. Though their duties are often clerical in nature, the tasks require a more precise skill set to perform. The most major fields that require administrative assistants with specialized training are medicine and law.

Medical administrative assistants must be aware of medical terminology and procedures in order to effectively do their job. They must be knowledgeable of medical ethics, billing, equipment, and other such operational tasks inherent to the medical field. As assistants to physicians and medical scientists, medical administrative assistants are skilled in researching, writing, preparing reports, and creating presentations as well.

Legal administrative assistants, like their medical counterparts, work in a highly specialized field and therefore must have working knowledge of the law and legal procedures in order to gain employment. They assist lawyers and other legal professionals by composing legal papers such as briefs, motions, and subpoenas. These technical documents can only be prepared by an administrative assistant with a solid background in legal terminology and proceedings.
 
 

Top Administrative Assistant Schools

Keiser University

Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals. Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience.

At Keiser University, you will find a warm, friendly community with faculty and staff truly committed to your success. Our small class sizes, individualized attention, and one-class-at-a-time schedules create a positive learning environment where you can excel. Whether your goal is to prepare for a new career or to advance with your current employer, Keiser University is designed around your needs.

Keiser University Advantage

  • Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s and Doctoral degree programs
  • Day, Evening, and Online Classes
  • Financial Aid to Those Who Qualify
  • Job Placement Assistance Available
  • Military-friendly, scholarships for qualified active duty personnel, Veterans, and dependents. Yellow Ribbon program participant, approved for Veterans training Keiser University is a private, not-for-profit university.

Keiser University’s programs and curriculum remain in-line with technology and workforce trends, helping you develop the skills and qualifications necessary to succeed in today’s job market. Our career-focused programs make it possible for you to graduate in less time than you may think.
Programs and delivery format vary by campus. Courses are subject to change.

Keiser University’s programs and curriculum remain in-line with technology and workforce trends, helping you develop the skills and qualifications necessary to succeed in today’s job market. Our career-focused programs make it possible for you to graduate in less time than you may think.

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Elmira Business Institute

Take the fast track to your future at Elmira Business Institute!

Learn how you can get the training you need to begin a rewarding career in a field of high-demand. Complete and submit the form and one of our Admissions Representatives will be in touch soon to tell you more.

Advantages offered by Elmira Business Institute include:

  • Financial aid available for those who qualify
  • Accelerated, career-centered training in a wide range of industries
  • Flexible scheduling
  • Tuition planning
  • Lifetime career assistance
  • Two convenient campus locations

Complete one of EBI’s Certificate Programs:

  • Business
  • Accounting
  • General Business
  • General Office Assistant
  • Small Business Management
  • Medical
  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Coding and Billing
  • Medical Office Assistant

Earn your Associate Degree:

  • Business
  • Accounting
  • Business Administration
  • Office Technologies
  • Medical
  • Medical Assistant
  • Medical Coding and Reimbursement Specialist

EBI holds Accreditation through New York State Board of Regents, the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) and the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP).

EBI is proud to support our country’s veterans and has been approved for veterans benefits.

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Mildred Elley

The mission of Mildred Elley is to provide quality career education and technical training to allow students of diverse educational, cultural and personal backgrounds to become successful in an ever-changing global economy. Mildred Elley strives to afford students quality placement opportunities and instill in all of our graduates a desire for lifelong education and learning.

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McCann School of Business and Technology

Start your future now!

McCann School of Business & Technology (McCann) has a history of helping students succeed through hands-on education and career training. Our faculty and staff work to ensure that when you’ve completed your program, you’re truly ready to begin your career.

McCann School of Business & Technology (McCann) will help you choose your ideal career before you get started and assist with real-world employment after you’re done with school. We have a wide range of resources to help you every step of the way.

In today’s world, it makes sense to spend less time in the classroom, and more time earning a salary. McCann School of Business & Technology (McCann) can help you start your new career in as little as 18-24 months.

If you’re worried that you can’t afford an education, think again. Financial aid may be available to those who qualify. We will work with you to explore the financial aid options available to help you complete your degree.

The path to a bright future and a new career is easy – complete the form to learn more about McCann School of Business & Technology (McCann) now!

McCann School of Business & Technology (McCann)

  • Allentown, PA
  • Hazleton, PA
  • Lewisburg, PA
  • Monroe, LA
  • Pottsville, PA
  • Shreveport, LA
  • Wilkes-Barre, PA

McCann School of Business was founded by Louis C. McCann in 1897 in Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania, as a school of accountancy and secretarial training. Louis McCann’s sons, Dwight and Charles, entered the field and held administrative positions at the school and its additional locations. After the death of Dwight McCann in 1956, Dorothy Houser began serving as director. In 1959, Ms. Houser purchased the school in partnership with her husband, Harry D. Houser.

In 1981, James and Elizabeth Noone purchased the school from the Housers and McCann Education Centers, Inc. was formed. In 1995, the school opened an additional location in Pottsville, Pennsylvania to provide a better service and quality of education to residents of southern Schuykill County. A third campus of McCann commenced operations in September, 1998, in downtown Sunbury, Northumberland County.

In August 2002, McCann Educational Centers Inc. was acquired by the company now known as Delta Career Education Corporation headquartered in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The Scranton campus opened in 2003 and relocated to Dickson City, Lackawanna County, in 2008. The original Mahanoy City campus relocated to Hazleton in 2005, and in 2009 the school opened additional locations in Carlisle, Pennsylvania and Allentown, Pennsylvania. In 2010, the Pottsville campus opened an additional location in Macon, Georgia and in 2011 opened an additional location in Gulfport, MI. The Macon and Gulfport campuses are named Miller-Motte Technical College. They share the name of the Miller-Motte family of schools, also owned by Delta Career Education Corporation. In early 2012, an additional location of McCann was opened in Wilkes-Barre, PA.

In 2012, McCann School of Business & Technology merged with Miami-Jacobs Career College and the Academy of Court Reporting. Pottsville remains the main campus and additional locations were acquired, as a result of the merger, in Dayton, Springboro, Troy, Columbus, Sharonville and Independence Ohio. All of the acquired schools share the name Miami-Jacobs Career College.

Request more information now!

Programs may vary by campus.

DEL.GEN.06351.D.000

This school is regulated as a commercial motor carrier by the US DOT and their respective state agency: PADOE and LBOR. It takes fewer than 300 hours to complete this program; therefore it is not eligible for Title IV funding. This program is not within the scope of ACICS Accreditation.

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