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Answering phones is a necessary task regardless of your industry or specific field. Office administrators should have excellent phone skills as well as a friendly, pleasant voice. As an office administrator, you will be speaking to customers, suppliers and other professionals. You may need to answer questions, address concerns or refer a caller to another company representative.
If you are the sole office administrator at the company, you will likely be responsible for keeping an organized calendar of appointments and events. You may be accountable for just one person or for an entire staff. Instances include a wide variety of affairs such as setting appointments with clients or planning weekly staff meetings. In some cases, administrators also serve as personal assistants, so you may find yourself organizing lawn or pool care services, confirming dinner reservations or preparing travel accommodations for your boss.
As an office administrator, you will likely be the voice of the company, often speaking on behalf of your superiors. Because of this, possessing exemplary interpersonal skills is a significant prerequisite. Not only will you communicate among people within and outside the company, you will also be responsible for relaying important information. Communication will take place face-to-face, over the phone, through letters and faxes and via email.
Depending on the company and profession, you may be responsible for creating and maintaining data spreadsheets or entering information into a company database. For instance, an office administrator at a construction company might keep a spreadsheet of local suppliers and material costs. Most companies also keep detailed records of previous customer information: address, contact numbers, email addresses and service notes.
This is the most inclusive and perhaps most important category. Administrators provide a sense of organization and efficiency throughout the office and in other aspects of the company. They accomplish this through maintaining orderly filing systems and a neat, clutter-free environment.
Occasionally administrators also act as “go-fers,” running errands that do not particularly fall under any job description. These tasks may include but are not limited to making bank deposits, shopping for office supplies or picking up lunch for the staff.
Alison Datko is a professional editor with experience as a journalist, writer and blogger. She contributes to a variety of print and online publications, specializing in music, food, art, fashion and culture.