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Sample Job Duties

Professional Secretary/Executive Assistant/Administrative Assistant

  • Relieve management of administrative detail, all projects
  • Coordinate work flow
  • Update and chase delegated tasks to ensure progress to deadlines
  • Take initiative in manager’s absence
  • Keep projects on schedule
  • Maintain procedures manual to ensure consistent performance of routines


  • Handle all inquiries within my capacity
  • Arrange "callbacks" to protect boss’s time
  • Provide back-up materials for callbacks
  • Route calls elsewhere as needed
  • Do phone surveys/inquiries as needed




  • Compose correspondence/reports for own or manager’s signature
  • Arrange essential mail in priority action order for boss
  • Check deadlines on incoming requests and put preliminary work in play
  • Process replies on own initiative or from bosses’ dictation or notes
  • Research, draft or abstract reports


Other Potential Roles and Duties

  • Appointments/Meetings
  • Prepare agenda in advance
  • Arrange meeting facilities
  • Act as recording secretary; prepare action minutes


  • Perform to earn boss’s full confidence
  • Assure discreet handling of all business


  • Screen to control interruptions
  • Provide back-up data as needed
  • Arrange amenities as needed
  • As arranged, "rescue" boss from laggards
  • Schedule visits away from boss’s area for priority/private tasks
  • Arrange travel through internal or outside agents
  • Arrange travel cash in advance
  • Prepare itinerary, trip file and supplies
  • Prepare expense report tools for boss
  • Complete expense reports after trip

Data Management

  • Improve/tighten storage/retrieval systems
  • Update and manage index
  • Update secretarial/clerical desk manual
  • Set up "tickler" system
  • Set up "exception reporting" system to handle routines without supervision
  • Routinely re-order department supplies
  • Update mail/phone directories
  • Make these available to trainees


  • Handle administrative detail, all projects
  • Seeks greater role in projects within administrative duties
  • Seek training on projects outside my range
  • As required, recruit, hire, train and supervise part-time or full-time, paid, or unpaid/volunteer secretarial or clerical staff


At the advanced levels, office administration is about METHODS for handling work; it requires a constant audit of the way a company does things

and willingness to rock the boat for greater economy and efficiency in getting work done.

Here are some typical tasks:

  • Study and review company or department procedures
  • Recommend management action to improve standard operating procedures. Present comparisons on costs, risks, and benefits
  • Develop and test new procedures
  • Take part in any administrative meetings to assure secretarial follow-through
  • Take initiative on requests and inquiries of administrative nature, especially when bosses’ specialty is not administrative
  • Prepare and control administrative budgets

Some Administrative Assistants perform only the duties listed above. Others perform them along with their Administration duties.

Still others specialize in Finance, Marketing, Personnel, or Engineering, and their title should clearly express their special area of concentration.

The more clearly your title informs callers and correspondents about what you actually DO and CAN DO for your team, the better.

Source: International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP)

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