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Occupation Information

Secretaries and Administrative Assistants, Except Legal, Medical, and Executive
SOC Code: 43-6014.00

Perform routine clerical and administrative functions such as drafting correspondence, scheduling appointments, organizing and maintaining paper and electronic files, or providing information to callers.

Sample of reported job titles: Administrative Assistant, Administrative Associate, Administrative Secretary, Administrative Specialist, Administrative Technician, Clerk Typist, Department Secretary, Office Assistant, Secretary, Staff Assistant

Tasks

  • Use computers for various applications, such as database management or word processing.
  • Answer telephones and give information to callers, take messages, or transfer calls to appropriate individuals.
  • Create, maintain, and enter information into databases.
  • Set up and manage paper or electronic filing systems, recording information, updating paperwork, or maintaining documents, such as attendance records, correspondence, or other material.
  • Operate office equipment, such as fax machines, copiers, or phone systems and arrange for repairs when equipment malfunctions.
  • Greet visitors or callers and handle their inquiries or direct them to the appropriate persons according to their needs.
  • Maintain scheduling and event calendars.
  • Complete forms in accordance with company procedures.
  • Schedule and confirm appointments for clients, customers, or supervisors.
  • Make copies of correspondence or other printed material.
  • Locate and attach appropriate files to incoming correspondence requiring replies.
  • Operate electronic mail systems and coordinate the flow of information, internally or with other organizations.
  • Compose, type, and distribute meeting notes, routine correspondence, or reports, such as presentations or expense, statistical, or monthly reports.
  • Open, read, route, and distribute incoming mail or other materials and answer routine letters.
  • Provide services to customers, such as order placement or account information.
  • Review work done by others to check for correct spelling and grammar, ensure that company format policies are followed, and recommend revisions.
  • Conduct searches to find needed information, using such sources as the Internet.
  • Manage projects or contribute to committee or team work.
  • Mail newsletters, promotional material, or other information.
  • Order and dispense supplies.
  • Learn to operate new office technologies as they are developed and implemented.
  • Perform payroll functions, such as maintaining timekeeping information and processing and submitting payroll.
  • Collect and deposit money into accounts, disburse funds from cash accounts to pay bills or invoices, keep records of collections and disbursements, and ensure accounts are balanced.
  • Coordinate conferences, meetings, or special events, such as luncheons or graduation ceremonies.
  • Arrange conference, meeting, or travel reservations for office personnel.
  • Establish work procedures or schedules and keep track of the daily work of clerical staff.
  • Develop or maintain internal or external company Web sites.
  • Prepare and mail checks.
  • Supervise other clerical staff and provide training and orientation to new staff.
  • Train and assist staff with computer usage.
  • Prepare conference or event materials, such as flyers or invitations.

Technology Skills

  • Access software - Citrix
  • Accounting software - Fund accounting software ; Intuit QuickBooks ; Sage 50 Accounting; Tax software
  • Analytical or scientific software - IBM SPSS Statistics
  • Backup or archival software - Veritas NetBackup
  • Business intelligence and data analysis software - IBM Cognos Impromptu ; MicroStrategy ; Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition
  • Calendar and scheduling software - Appointment scheduling software
  • Content workflow software - Atlassian JIRA
  • Customer relationship management CRM software - Blackbaud The Raiser's Edge ; Salesforce software
  • Data base management system software - Apache Hadoop ; Apache Hive ; Apache Solr ; Teradata Database (see all 6 examples)
  • Data base reporting software - SAP Crystal Reports
  • Data base user interface and query software - Blackboard ; Data entry software ; FileMaker Pro; Microsoft Access (see all 5 examples)
  • Data mining software - Data warehouse software
  • Desktop publishing software - Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign ; Microsoft Publisher
  • Document management software - Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat ; Filing system software
  • Electronic mail software - IBM Notes ; Microsoft Exchange Server ; Microsoft Outlook
  • Enterprise application integration software - IBM InfoSphere DataStage ; IBM WebSphere
  • Enterprise resource planning ERP software - Microsoft Dynamics ; NetSuite ERP ; Oracle PeopleSoft ; SAP (see all 13 examples)
  • Enterprise system management software - IBM Power Systems software
  • Financial analysis software - Delphi Technology ; Oracle E-Business Suite Financials
  • Graphics or photo imaging software - Adobe Systems Adobe Creative Cloud ; Adobe Systems Adobe Illustrator ; Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop ; Microsoft Visio
  • Human resources software - ADP Workforce Now ; Human resource management software HRMS ; Oracle Taleo
  • Information retrieval or search software - LexisNexis
  • Internet browser software - Mozilla Firefox; Web browser software
  • Medical software - Healthcare common procedure coding system HCPCS ; Medical condition coding software ; Medical procedure coding software ; MEDITECH software
  • Metadata management software - CA Erwin Data Modeler
  • Office suite software - Microsoft Office
  • Operating system software - Handheld computer device software ; Linux ; Microsoft Windows ; Oracle Solaris (see all 5 examples)
  • Portal server software - Apache HTTP Server
  • Presentation software - Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Project management software - Confluence ; Microsoft Project ; Microsoft SharePoint ; Oracle Primavera Enterprise Project Portfolio Management
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel
  • Time accounting software - Timekeeping software
  • Transaction security and virus protection software - McAfee ; Symantec
  • Transaction server software - Customer information control system CICS
  • Video conferencing software - Web conferencing software
  • Video creation and editing software - YouTube
  • Voice recognition software - Dictation software
  • Web page creation and editing software - Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver ; Facebook ; LinkedIn
  • Web platform development software - Apache Tomcat ; Drupal ; Hypertext markup language HTML ; Microsoft Active Server Pages ASP
  • Word processing software - Microsoft Word

Tools Used

  • Desktop computers
  • Dictation machines - Dictation equipment
  • Digital cameras
  • Laser fax machine - Laser facsimile machines
  • Mobile phones
  • Notebook computers - Laptop computers
  • Pagers
  • Personal computers
  • Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers - Personal digital assistants PDA
  • Photocopiers - Photocopying equipment
  • Pocket calculator - Handheld calculators
  • Portable data input terminals - Handheld computers
  • Scanners - Data input scanners
  • Special purpose telephones - Multi-line telephone systems

Knowledge

  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Skills

  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Abilities

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

Interests

  • Interest code: CE
    • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
    • Enterprising - Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.

Work Context

  • Telephone - 91% responded “Every day.”
  • Contact With Others - 86% responded “Constant contact with others.”
  • Face-to-Face Discussions - 82% responded “Every day.”
  • Electronic Mail - 86% responded “Every day.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work - 58% responded “A lot of freedom.”
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled - 85% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Sitting - 67% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team - 53% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - 58% responded “Very important.”
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks - 52% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - 48% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Letters and Memos - 50% responded “Every day.”
  • Time Pressure - 47% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Deal With External Customers - 43% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making - 46% responded “Every day.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results - 30% responded “Very important results.”
  • Coordinate or Lead Others - 38% responded “Very important.”
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions - 41% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Duration of Typical Work Week - 62% responded “40 hours.”
  • Physical Proximity - 46% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People - 37% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”

Education

Percentage of RespondentsEducation Level Required
39%High school diploma or equivalent
37%Associate's degree
14%Some college, no degree

Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Concern for Others - Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Social Orientation - Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
  • Leadership - Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
  • Innovation - Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.

Work Values

  • Support - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
  • Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Working Conditions - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $17.11 hourly, $35,590 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 2,536,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Decline (-2% or lower)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 244,300

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