OPINION by Margie B. Luceña | The significance of an administrative assistant

by Margie B. Luceña

Administrative assistants provide administrative support to ensure efficient operation of the office. They support managers and employees through a variety of tasks related to organization and communication. One of the abilities that an administrative assistant must possess is to effectively communicate via phone or email. Their role is based on what is being told by their manager or superior.

Administrative assistants have a number of general duties and responsibilities. They are responsible for answering and direct phone calls to concerned person. They produce and distribute correspondence memos, letters, faxes and forms, develop and maintain a filing system, order office supplies, submit and reconcile expense reports, prepare and monitor invoices. They also carry out administrative duties such as filing, typing, copying, binding, scanning, etc., maintain computer and manual filing system, handle sensitive information in a confidential manner.

The task given to them depends on the office or company department where they are assigned. Some of them are assigned in the administrative section wherein their duties and responsibilities is more on answering phone calls, organizing meetings and appointments, producing and distributing correspondence memos, letters, faxes and forms. If they are assigned in the supply department, they are tasks to order office supplies, maintain supplies inventory. And if he/she is assigned in the accounting department, they are tasks to prepare and monitor invoices, submit and reconcile financial reports, prepare payroll and vouchers.

Working as an administrative assistant is a great training for those who are seeking higher positions with greater responsibilities. In fact, throughout history, many persons who started out as administrative assistants ended up being managers, executives, and even political leaders. We must, therefore, never dismiss administrative assistants as merely helpers of people with higher positions. In their own special way, they provide invaluable support, without which many tasks would go undone.