What You Need to Know About… Administration

Long gone are the days when administrators were middle-aged women looking through instruction manuals to set up outlook and provide a pleasant voice for answering phones. Today administrators are the backbone of the office and an essential part of any successful company.

From getting phone numbers to organising meetings and handling petty cash, an administrator’s work is rewarding and versatile. If you’re the organiser in your group of friends and like assisting others or taking on responsibilities, then it may be worthwhile considering a role as an administrator.

So, What’s Involved?

As an administrator you are usually heavily involved in the operations of a business, whether it’s for the business as a whole or for specific teams and offices. You will get to know every aspect of the company and how it runs, giving you a real opportunity to contribute to the performance of the company.

You will be the first point of contact on the communication chain and will be responsible for ensuring that calls reach the right person. You will keep track of everyone and everything in the office. You will be responsible for filing, tracking the office budget and ensuring that everyone is on task and on time. You will be involved in organising meetings, photocopying, faxing, writing letters and much more.

The Good Bits

One of the major perks of being an administrator is versatility. The needs of a company change all the time so you will always be doing something new, contacting new people and getting involved in different aspects of the firm.

Another great thing about being an administrator is that you get to know the ins and outs of the company and have a real understanding of how it functions. This allows you to make the company become efficient as possible. The skills and knowledge you pick up as an administrator will make you indispensable to any company and allows you to progress effortlessly into your dream role.

The Not So Good Bits

One of the downsides of being an administrator is that sometimes, the work you do is not always recognised by colleagues and sometimes taken for granted. That said; don’t be surprised to find a box of chocolates on your desk to say thank you. Your colleagues have probably experienced a week of anarchy with fax machines breaking and searching through databases.

What Skills and Qualifications Do You Need to be an Administrator?

  • Organisation
  • Communication
  • Efficiency
  • Attention to detail
  • Team Work
  • Versatility
  • Logic
  • Computer Literacy
  • Flexibility
  • Interpersonal skills

As an administrator you do not need any qualifications in general but usually employers ask for five GCSE’s including English and Maths. RSA qualifications are a plus but not usually necessary as employers sometimes test your ability in the recruitment process.

Experience isn’t always essential either because a company would want you to adapt and train you to their own administration process.


You have the skills and feel a career in admin is for you. ‘How much?’ we hear you ask.

Usually pay ranges from £19,000 – £23,000 per year (London based) but can go up to £30,000 depending on your hours, responsibilities and experience.


From being an admin, the routes of progression are usually to office manager, PA or EA roles.

by Nathalie Lot | 04 July 2013


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