In a clerical job, you undertake day-to-day administrative tasks in an office environment. Your duties and responsibilities may include answering phones, preparing, printing and photocopying documents, organizing financial records and other behind-the-scenes jobs that help keep an organization or company running smoothly. Many administrative and office-based positions require experience in similar tasks, jobs and skill sets. The proactive job-seeker can find local opportunities to gain the relevant experience.
Use word processing programs, spreadsheet applications and other business software regularly to get used to how they work. Clerical jobs almost always require general knowledge of basic software and computer skills.
Volunteer for clerical work at a local church, charity or social organization. Groups like these will always have membership records to keep up-to-date, finances to organize, and letters to send out, among other administrative tasks.
Get involved in a committee for a local event, such as a festival, parade or sporting occasion, and volunteer your clerical services for a role such as treasurer or secretary. These kinds of events have the advantage of lasting just a short while, offering an opportunity for temporary but useful experience.
Ask a local company if you can organize a few days' informal clerical experience with them. They'll be grateful for the extra help, and the experience will add weight to your resume when applying for positions.
Take up a formal internship, where you spend a period of time, ranging from a few weeks to a few months, training on the job. These positions are usually unpaid but offer invaluable practical experience. You can find details of clerical internships on job search and internship websites.
Gain an entry-level job that involves clerical skills. Cashiers, sales persons and stock clerks all use clerical skills in their jobs, and these can add to your catalog of experience.