What Is An Office Administrator? (With Skills And Salary)

Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 24 January 2023

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

An office administrator performs daily administrative activities to help a company run smoothly and to maintain business efficiency. Knowing more about the role and the job profile may help you decide if you want to become an office administrator. In this article, we discuss what is an office administrator, explore their duties and responsibilities and learn how to become one.

What is an office administrator?

An office administrator is an employee who performs daily tasks and activities to ensure that a business runs smoothly and efficiently as it should. Companies employ office administrators to perform physical maintenance tasks, record keeping, logistics, personal development, financial planning and billing. Office managers or administrators also supervise other staff members when necessary. In large organisations, the duties of an office administrator point to a specific department, and they may require specialised training to perform these duties.

Administrators perform key activities regarding planning, control, and organization in the workplace. Effective office administration acts as a connecting link between the workforce and senior management, and thus boosts staff confidence, morale and motivation. Because of the broad nature of work, office administrator picks up multiple skills as they gain more and more experience.

Related: What Does A Front Office Executive Do? (Skills And Salary)

What does an office administrator do?

As an office administrator, you may take up several responsibilities and duties and thus contribute to the business in a major way. Some of the major roles and responsibilities of an office administrator include:

  • keeping accurate stock of office supplies, equipment and furniture and placing orders whenever needed

  • ensuring compliance with organizational policies through planning and coordination

  • supervising staff members and delegating administrative responsibilities

  • welcoming office visitors and directing them to the right office/department

  • greeting clients, answering phone calls and responding to emails

  • preparation of documents like office correspondence, presentations and memos

  • performing various bookkeeping tasks like invoicing and budget tracking

  • managing and coordinating meetings, appointments and schedules

  • maintaining office equipment and furniture

  • performing research activities and preparing reports for supervisors

  • assisting the HR department with hiring and onboarding

  • maintaining office files and paperwork

Requirements to become an office administrator

Since there are several roles that an office administrator fulfills, the job requires proficiency in various skills. Here are the fundamental requirements to pursue a career as an office administrator:

Educational and training requirements

If you aspire to become an office administrator, you might ideally decide this at the school level. You can choose to take up the science or commerce stream at the 10+2 level. After 10+2, you may pursue a bachelor's degree in business administration in order to get placed as an office administrator. You may also opt for a master's degree in business administration to gain additional specialization. A master's degree in business can help you further in acquiring the right skills for this job.

One can also opt for a diploma in office administration after class 10th to gain employment at public sector undertakings, private and public sectors and banks as an office administrator. Apart from regular education and training, a candidate also receives job-specific training at the place of employment. Such training is specific to the department or kind of role offered. Many companies also provide specialized training to professionals entering this field.

Skill-based requirements

Apart from educational degrees, there are several skills that office administrators require in their day-to-day jobs. Being adept at multiple skills is beneficial given the diverse nature of this job. Below are a couple of important skills to have for office administrators:

  • Organizational and planning abilities: Because of the exhaustive nature of work that office administrators perform, strong organizational abilities are extremely essential to the job. Being an office administrator may require you to work on a variety of tasks in a day.

  • Communication skills: Since office administrators frequently collaborate with colleagues across the organization, it is integral to have good verbal and listening skills. As an office administrator, you will often interact with colleagues from different departments.

  • S**ense of detail:** Expert attention to detail and flexibility can serve you well in your day-to-day responsibilities as an office administrator. An ability to grasp inaccuracies and glitches in daily tasks and technical settings is beneficial.

  • Basic computer skills: Since office administrators perform a variety of technical tasks, it is important that they are well-versed in important computer software based on their day-to-day duties. These may involve computer-related tasks such as answering emails and entering data, so basic knowledge of computer-related tasks plays an important role.

  • Research and analysis skills: An office administrator may sometimes work on generating reports and analysing statistical data, which calls for excellent research skills. Ability to collate information and arrange them as a report is also a valuable skill to have as an office administrator.

  • Critical thinking skills: Critical thinking skills are essential to being an office administrator. An ability to think quickly to overcome various on-the-job challenges is a required skill for office administrators.

  • Quick-learning skills: As an office administrator, you may require being quick to learn new tools, software and processes whenever required. An ability to adapt to new systems, methods and ways of working in a short period can come in handy in the workplace.

  • Teamwork and delegation: An office administrator also often needs to delegate responsibilities to other team members. Good delegation skills and an ability to communicate well with the team may enable this professional to balance workload systematically. An office administrator works as a part of a team and hence, good teamwork skills are extremely important to have.

Read more: Basic Computer Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become an office administrator

Becoming an office administrator requires discipline and focus. If you have decided that office administration is the right career for you, there is a well-defined path to follow. By following the below steps, you can work to secure a position as an office administrator with an organisation:

1. Prepare a strong resume

Once you have the required education and skills, the next step is the prepare a strong resume highlighting your education and skill set. You can go through open office administrator positions and update your resume with top skills that employers are looking for. Ensure you include your highest degree and any job experience or internships in the resume.

Read more: How To Make A Resume (With Examples)

2. Apply for suitable open positions

Once your resume is ready and examined, it is time to apply for open positions. Explore vacancies for office administrator positions and read through their job descriptions thoroughly. Apply for a role only if it fits your career aspirations and skill set. Applying to various portals can give you a better chance at receiving interview calls from companies.

Related: Guide: Using Indeed.com Job Search

3. Prepare for interviews

When you receive an invitation to interview with a company, prepare thoroughly. Research every company you plan on attending an interview with. Brush up on your technical skills and research commonly asked interview questions. Make a list of personal examples to highlight all your technical and interpersonal skills and prepare for the interview by practising responses to common interview questions.

Career outlook of an office administrator

Office administrator usually starts out as an entry-level position. This role deals with providing administrative support across a company or at a specific department. Office administrators may also perform duties of a receptionist, data entry operator or office assistant. With more experience, the office administrator often moves to mid-level positions like executive assistant, office manager, operations manager, facilities manager and administrative technician. Mid-level positions handle specialised tasks and are in charge of company projects. These mid-level admins usually perform a bit of everything at the workplace.

With more experience, a mid-level office administrator moves to high-level positions like chief administrative officer, senior executive assistant, senior receptionist or operations director. These high-level administrators are more technically involved in company affairs as compared to entry or mid-level admins. They work across business processes and collaborate with executives from various departments. The work responsibilities of high-level office administrators lean more towards people management and into specialised roles.

Salary of an office administrator

The national average salary for an office administrator is ₹14,496 per month during the initial years. The compensation increases as the individual gains more experience and moves to senior-level positions.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

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