What is an Administrative Assistant

Definition of assistant is mentioned as someone who is ranked below a senior person while administrative is defined as related to running of an organization. Hence an administrative assistant means someone who is ranked below /or attached to the senior person who is responsible for the administration of an organization or a business.

As an administrative assistant a person would be responsible for helping in effective and smooth operations of office administration and such supporting activities. The responsibilities of the assistant may include the mundane tasks that need to be done by the person in charge of the administration. The tasks that are important for execution but tasks which can be done by any other person so as the time of the administrator is spent judiciously on important decisions. These tasks may include sending memos, emails, making phone calls, fixing up appointments, organizing travel, preparing presentations and even doing research of the available data.

The assistant may also have to coordinate with staff of various departments and work as a go between various units of the organization to ensure smooth functioning. This may also help in removal of bottlenecks for better speed and flow in the organization. The assistant sometimes also has to take care of visitors to the office to ensure correct flow and thus prevent time loss of people who need not be involved in the activities. The other secretarial activities too have to be taken care of like taking minutes of the meetings. Scheduling of the meetings and interview too falls in the preview of the assistant to ensure that the important meetings between various departmental heads can be arranged timely ensure utilization of time for all the heads.

Though the position of the assistant may sound as not important but it is key towards proper administration as even administrative heads will become handicapped without the help of the executive assistant as the head will be caught up in the mundane tasks and not be able to take the key decisions. Thus the administrative assistant plays a key if not direct role in ensuring smooth flow of an organization and thus maximizing profits.

The priorities of the administrative assistant should include keeping management updated on various projects, Coordination to ensure proper work flow, Updating and following up on the delegated tasks. In the absence of the administrator the assistant sometimes takes control of the office and having closely worked with the administrator/manager can be the most dependable person to take critical decisions keeping in view the policy and mind site of the administrator.

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