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Become A Business Assistant

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Working As A Business Assistant

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Performing Administrative Activities
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $39,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Business Assistant Do

Secretaries and administrative assistants perform routine clerical and administrative duties. They organize files, prepare documents, schedule appointments, and support other staff.

Duties

Secretaries and administrative assistants typically do the following:

  • Answer telephones and take messages or transfer calls
  • Schedule appointments and update event calendars
  • Arrange staff meetings
  • Handle incoming and outgoing mail and faxes
  • Prepare memos, invoices, or other reports
  • Edit documents
  • Maintain databases and filing systems, whether electronic or paper
  • Perform basic bookkeeping

Secretaries and administrative assistants perform a variety of clerical and administrative duties that are necessary to run an organization efficiently. They use computer software to create spreadsheets; manage databases; and prepare presentations, reports, and documents. They also may negotiate with vendors, buy supplies, and manage stockrooms or corporate libraries. Secretaries and administrative assistants also use videoconferencing, fax, and other office equipment. Specific job duties vary by experience, job title, and specialty.

Executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants provide high-level administrative support for an office and for top executives of an organization. They often handle more complex responsibilities, such as reviewing incoming documents, conducting research, and preparing reports. Some also supervise clerical staff.

Legal secretaries perform work requiring knowledge of legal terminology and procedures. They prepare legal documents, such as summonses, complaints, motions, and subpoenas under the supervision of an attorney or a paralegal. They also review legal journals and help with legal research—for example, by verifying quotes and citations in legal briefs.

Medical secretaries transcribe dictation and prepare reports or articles for physicians or medical scientists. They also take simple medical histories of patients, arrange for patients to be hospitalized, or process insurance payments. Medical secretaries need to be familiar with medical terminology and codes, medical records, and hospital or laboratory procedures.

Secretaries and administrative assistants, except legal, medical, and executive is the largest subcategory of secretaries and administrative assistants. They handle an office’s administrative activities in almost every sector of the economy, including schools, government, and private corporations. For example, secretaries in schools are often responsible for handling most of the communications among parents, students, the community, teachers, and school administrators. They schedule appointments, receive visitors, and keep track of students’ records.

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How To Become A Business Assistant

High school graduates who have experience using computer software applications, such as word processing and spreadsheets, usually qualify for entry-level positions. Although most secretaries learn their job in several weeks, many legal and medical secretaries require additional training to learn industry-specific terminology. Executive secretaries usually need several years of related work experience.

Education

High school graduates can take courses in word processing and office procedures at technical schools or community colleges. Some temporary placement agencies also provide training in word processing, spreadsheet, and database software.

Some medical and legal secretaries learn industry-specific terminology and practices by attending courses offered at community colleges or technical schools. For executive secretary positions, employers increasingly prefer to hire those who have taken some college courses or have a bachelor’s degree.

Training

Secretaries and administrative assistants typically learn their skills through short-term on-the-job training, usually lasting a few weeks. During this time they learn about administrative procedures, including how to prepare documents. Medical and legal secretaries’ training may last several months as they learn industry-specific terminology and practices.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Executive secretaries can gain experience by working in administrative positions that have less challenging responsibilities. Many secretaries and administrative assistants advance to higher level administrative positions.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although not required, certification can demonstrate competency to employers.

The International Association of Administrative Professionals offers the Certified Administrative Professional (CAP) certification. Candidates must have a minimum of 2 to 4 years of administrative work experience, depending on their level of education, and pass an examination.

Legal secretaries have several certification options. For example, those with 1 year of general office experience, or who have completed an approved training course, can acquire the Accredited Legal Professional (ALP) certification through a testing process administered by NALS (previously known as National Association of Legal Secretaries). NALS also offers the Professional Legal Secretary (PLS) certification, considered to be an advanced certification for legal support professionals.

The Certified Legal Secretary Specialist (CLSS) certification is conferred by Legal Secretaries International in areas such as intellectual property, criminal law, civil litigation, probate, and business law. Candidates typically need to have 5 years of legal experience and pass an examination to become certified.

Advancement

Secretaries and administrative assistants generally advance to other administrative positions with more responsibilities, such as office supervisor, office manager, or executive secretary.

With additional training, many legal secretaries become paralegals or legal assistants.

Important Qualities

Integrity. Many secretaries and administrative assistants are trusted to handle sensitive information. For example, medical secretaries collect patient data that is required, by law, to be kept confidential in order to protect patient privacy.

Interpersonal skills. Secretaries and administrative assistants interact with clients, customers, or staff. They should communicate effectively and be courteous when interacting with others to create a positive work environment and client experience.

Organizational skills. Secretaries and administrative assistants keep files, folders, and schedules in proper order so an office can run efficiently.

Writing skills. Secretaries and administrative assistants write memos and emails when communicating with managers, employees, and customers. Therefore, they must have good grammar, ensure accuracy, and maintain a professional tone.

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Business Assistant Career Paths

Business Assistant
Executive Assistant Office Manager Owner
Co-Owner
6 Yearsyrs
Executive Assistant Office Manager
Business Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Executive Assistant Office Manager Accounting Manager
Controller
9 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Consultant Manager
Office Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Consultant Account Manager
Sales Account Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Consultant Senior Accountant
Accounting Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Legal Assistant Specialist Account Executive
Relationship Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Legal Assistant Administrator Manager
Business Owner
6 Yearsyrs
Legal Assistant Paralegal Contracts Administrator
Contracts Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Assistant Specialist Accountant
Accountant And Office Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Assistant Administrator Operations Manager
Practice Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Human Resources Assistant Payroll Administrator Senior Accountant
Accounts Payable Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Office Administrator Accounts Receivable Specialist Accounts Receivable Supervisor
Accounts Receivable Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Office Administrator Executive Administrative Assistant Assistant To Executive Vice President
Senior Executive Assistant
8 Yearsyrs
Office Administrator Administrator
Business Office Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Teacher Coordinator Human Resources Generalist
Office Manager Of Human Resources
6 Yearsyrs
Teacher Adjunct Professor Human Resources Manager
Administrative Director
8 Yearsyrs
Teacher Specialist Customer Service Supervisor
Administrative Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Clerk Human Resources Coordinator Executive Secretary
Principal Secretary
7 Yearsyrs
Accounts Payable Clerk Executive Administrative Assistant Business Owner
Entrepreneur
5 Yearsyrs
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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Business Associate 2.6 years
Business Assistant 2.0 years
Top Careers Before Business Assistant
Cashier 7.9%
Internship 7.0%
Assistant 3.9%
Volunteer 3.7%
Server 3.0%
Teller 2.6%
Manager 2.5%
Secretary 2.4%
Top Careers After Business Assistant
Cashier 7.1%
Internship 6.6%
Assistant 3.7%
Volunteer 3.5%
Manager 3.0%
Server 2.9%
Teacher 2.2%
Owner 2.2%

Do you work as a Business Assistant?

Average Yearly Salary
$39,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$23,000
Min 10%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$39,000
Median 50%
$68,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Magellan Health
Highest Paying City
Bethesda, MD
Highest Paying State
District of Columbia
Avg Experience Level
2.5 years
How much does a Business Assistant make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Business Assistant in the United States is $39,899 per year or $19 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $23,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $68,000.

Real Business Assistant Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
International Business Assistant The Chemical Company Jamestown, RI Oct 01, 2013 $62,422
Business Assistant Edgewood Venice LLC Venice, FL Apr 24, 2015 $50,000
Miami Stars Premier Business Assistant Round Star Southeast LLC Miami, FL Oct 01, 2015 $44,641
Business Affairs Assistant Deluxe Pictures Los Angeles, CA Mar 31, 2012 $32,000
International Business Assistant 7-Sigma, Inc. Minneapolis, MN Oct 01, 2010 $28,362

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How Would You Rate The Salary Of a Business Assistant?

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Top Skills for A Business Assistant

  1. Financial Arrangements
  2. Insurance Companies
  3. Customer Service
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Guarantee positive, dental experience by streamlining financial arrangements.
  • Managed and prepared bills and other vital documents for insurance companies including Medicare/Medicaid billing and co-insurance payments.
  • Developed and maintained a cohesive customer service team by providing an environment of accountability, flexibility, integrity, and excellence.
  • Operate telephone switchboard to answer, screen, or forward calls, providing information, taking messages, or scheduling appointments.
  • Present treatment plans and managed patient financial responsibilities.

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Top 10 Best States for Business Assistants

  1. Massachusetts
  2. District of Columbia
  3. Connecticut
  4. Alaska
  5. Rhode Island
  6. Minnesota
  7. California
  8. Nevada
  9. New York
  10. Washington
  • (1,455 jobs)
  • (369 jobs)
  • (399 jobs)
  • (125 jobs)
  • (97 jobs)
  • (707 jobs)
  • (4,464 jobs)
  • (218 jobs)
  • (2,201 jobs)
  • (791 jobs)

Business Assistant Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 7,091 Business Assistant resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Business Assistant Resume

View Resume Examples

Business Assistant Demographics

Gender

Female

63.0%

Male

25.2%

Unknown

11.9%
Ethnicity

White

58.8%

Hispanic or Latino

16.1%

Black or African American

10.8%

Asian

10.8%

Unknown

3.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

39.3%

French

11.5%

Mandarin

11.1%

Chinese

10.3%

German

4.5%

Italian

2.8%

Japanese

2.8%

Cantonese

2.6%

Russian

2.2%

Portuguese

2.2%

Arabic

2.2%

Korean

1.8%

Vietnamese

1.6%

Hindi

1.0%

Greek

1.0%

Swedish

0.8%

Tagalog

0.8%

Romanian

0.6%

Czech

0.6%

Turkish

0.6%
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Business Assistant Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

17.5%

University of South Florida

5.8%

Strayer University

5.3%

Ashford University

5.3%

Northern Virginia Community College

5.1%

New York University

5.1%

Pennsylvania State University

5.1%

Northeastern University

4.7%

Liberty University

4.5%

Texas Tech University

4.5%

Texas A&M University

4.3%

University of Central Florida

4.1%

Arizona State University

3.9%

Kent State University

3.7%

University of Washington

3.7%

University of Connecticut

3.7%

Kaplan University

3.5%

Southern New Hampshire University

3.3%

University of Maryland - University College

3.3%

University of Southern California

3.3%
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Majors

Business

33.9%

Accounting

8.9%

Finance

6.8%

Marketing

5.4%

Management

5.1%

Psychology

4.8%

Communication

4.3%

Health Care Administration

3.8%

Nursing

2.9%

Dental Assisting

2.8%

Education

2.5%

Liberal Arts

2.4%

General Studies

2.3%

Economics

2.2%

English

2.2%

Computer Science

2.1%

Political Science

2.0%

Human Resources Management

1.9%

Criminal Justice

1.9%

Law

1.8%
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Degrees

Bachelors

43.5%

Other

21.4%

Masters

16.1%

Associate

10.6%

Certificate

5.1%

Diploma

1.5%

Doctorate

1.5%

License

0.4%
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