A department secretary is responsible for providing administrative and clerical support to a specific department, ensuring smooth operations to maintain high-quality services to the customers and business partners. Department secretaries should have excellent knowledge of office management principles, especially on data processing procedures and customer service processes. They handle the scheduling of meetings and conferences, responding to customers' inquiries and concerns, directing visitors to the appropriate personnel and department, sorting files, and submitting business transactions and financial reports. A department secretary also recommends strategic procedures to generate more revenues and increase the company's profitability.

Department Secretary Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real department secretary resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Lead DoD team that assist Pakistan in gaining military capabilities to conduct counter-terrorism operations against the Taliban.
  • Volunteer for ISO auditor duties to ensure ISO procedures are followed for certification.
  • Perform payroll functions, including maintaining timekeeping information and processing and submitting payroll.
  • Prepare materials for monthly board of directors meetings including PowerPoint presentations, agendas and minutes.
  • Complete all payroll documentation, enter all payroll documentation into computer program, and submit to payroll department.
  • Create PowerPoint presentations used for business development, organize files and develop spreadsheets, fax reports and scan documents.
  • Ensure insurance policies are verified prior to appointment time and request authorizations for new patients to facilitate billing and reimbursement.
  • Interview incoming patients, his/her relatives, or other responsible individuals to obtain identifying information with insurance and financial information.
  • Implement a solution for staffing restructure that reduce overall salary expense while maintaining productivity for a rehabilitation inpatient nursing unit.
  • Prepare paralegal mail FedEx and docket items.
  • Initiate and monitor requisitions through PeopleSoft for office supplies, laboratory supplies including purchasing lab animals for research and travel reimbursement.

Department Secretary Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 22% of Department Secretaries are proficient in Patients, Customer Service, and Data Entry. They’re also known for soft skills such as Interpersonal skills, Organizational skills, and Writing skills.

We break down the percentage of Department Secretaries that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Patients, 22%

    Ensured insurance policies were verified prior to appointment time and requested authorizations for new patients to facilitate billing and reimbursement.

  • Customer Service, 10%

    Promoted to Assistant Supervisor Promoted to Team Leader - Office of Consumer information Supervised up to thirty-plus part-time customer service representatives.

  • Data Entry, 7%

    Scheduled appointments for children and the psychologist data entry contacted foster parents in reference to appointments and answering phones

  • Medical Terminology, 7%

    Type and transcribe DRA/Appeals and Utilization Committee documentation - requires knowledge of medical terminology.

  • Patient Care, 4%

    Assisted Social Workers with coordination of patient care services via home or to a rehabilitation facility

  • Word Processing, 4%

    Assisted with word processing projects requiring extensive output of spreadsheets and presentations

Some of the skills we found on department secretary resumes included "patients," "customer service," and "data entry." We have detailed the most important department secretary responsibilities below.

  • Interpersonal skills can be considered to be the most important personality trait for a department secretary to have. According to a department secretary resume, "secretaries and administrative assistants interact with clients, customers, or staff" department secretaries are able to use interpersonal skills in the following example we gathered from a resume: "utilized adept interpersonal and communication skills, providing clients with exemplary customer service experiences. "
  • While it may not be the most important skill, we found that many department secretary duties rely on organizational skills. This example from a department secretary explains why: "secretaries and administrative assistants keep files, folders, and schedules in proper order so an office can run efficiently." This resume example is just one of many ways department secretaries are able to utilize organizational skills: "prepared meeting minutes, edited proposals, project punch list, memorandums for organizational support. "
  • Another skill that is quite popular among department secretaries is writing skills. This skill is very critical to fulfilling every day responsibilities as is shown in this example from a department secretary resume: "secretaries and administrative assistants write memos and emails when communicating with managers, employees, and customers" This example from a resume shows how this skill is used: "position: standard line underwriting department performed routine clerical and data entry. "
  • See the full list of department secretary skills.

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    What Administrative Clerks Do

    An administrative clerk provides support to staff and does clerical works. These clerical duties include answering and making phone calls, typing documents, compiling and filing records, and scheduling appointments. The clerks often set up office meetings and invite reliable speakers. Also, they do research and prepare reports or presentations. Candidates for the job must be organized, detail-oriented, and can manage their time well. They must be tech-savvy and have a basic knowledge of bookkeeping. The salary depends on their experience, industry, and location of the job.

    We looked at the average department secretary annual salary and compared it with the average of an administrative clerk. Generally speaking, administrative clerks receive $3,146 lower pay than department secretaries per year.

    While their salaries may differ, one common ground between department secretaries and administrative clerks are a few of the skills required in each craft. In both careers, employees bring forth skills like patients, customer service, and data entry.

    There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, a department secretary responsibilities require skills like "medical terminology," "patient care," "payroll," and "secretarial support." Meanwhile a typical administrative clerk has skills in areas such as "payroll data," "database systems," "office machines," and "background checks." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

    Administrative clerks receive the highest salaries in the finance industry coming in with an average yearly salary of $33,044. But department secretaries are paid more in the government industry with an average salary of $36,935.

    The education levels that administrative clerks earn is a bit different than that of department secretaries. In particular, administrative clerks are 1.6% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree than a department secretary. Additionally, they're 0.2% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of an Administrative Associate?

    An administrative associate is responsible for performing various tasks such as handling and processing paperwork, attending meetings and preparing minutes, responding to inquiries and other forms of correspondence, keeping accurate records, updating databases, and monitoring the company's financial activities. They also communicate with various department personnel, ensuring coordination should any important matter would arise. Furthermore, as an administrative associate, they are in charge of procuring supplies, implementing company policies, and supporting any staff members if needed.

    The next role we're going to look at is the administrative associate profession. Typically, this position earns a lower pay. In fact, they earn a $600 lower salary than department secretaries per year.

    A similarity between the two careers of department secretaries and administrative associates are a few of the skills associated with both roles. We used resumes from both professions to find that both use skills like "patients," "customer service," and "data entry. "

    But both careers also use different skills, according to real department secretary resumes. While department secretary responsibilities can utilize skills like "secretarial support," "hr," "emr," and "radiology," some administrative associates use skills like "eagle," "phone calls," "excellent organizational," and "financial transactions."

    It's been discovered that administrative associates earn lower salaries compared to department secretaries, but we wanted to find out where administrative associates earned the most pay. The answer? The finance industry. The average salary in the industry is $41,923. Additionally, department secretaries earn the highest paychecks in the government with an average salary of $36,935.

    On the topic of education, administrative associates earn similar levels of education than department secretaries. In general, they're 4.2% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.2% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How an Administrative Support Compares

    Administrative support specialists provide different types of governmental assistance. They carry out varied clerical duties in almost all industries. Most of these duties revolve around supervising and distributing information within an organization. This typically includes taking memos, answering phone calls, and managing, storing, and organizing files. They are also responsible for receiving and sending correspondence and greeting customers and clients. Some administrative support may be required to have vast professional knowledge as their duties are more specialized than the others.

    Let's now take a look at the administrative support profession. On average, these workers make higher salaries than department secretaries with a $2,219 difference per year.

    Using department secretaries and administrative supports resumes, we found that both professions have similar skills such as "patients," "customer service," and "data entry," but the other skills required are very different.

    As mentioned, these two careers differ between other skills that are required for performing the work exceedingly well. For example, gathering from department secretaries resumes, they are more likely to have skills like "medical terminology," "patient care," "secretarial support," and "hr." But a administrative support might have skills like "phone calls," "excellent organizational," "human resources," and "database management."

    Additionally, administrative supports earn a higher salary in the technology industry compared to other industries. In this industry, they receive an average salary of $40,623. Additionally, department secretaries earn an average salary of $36,935 in the government industry.

    Administrative supports are known to earn similar educational levels when compared to department secretaries. Additionally, they're 1.6% more likely to graduate with a Master's Degree, and 0.1% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of an Administrative Receptionist

    An administrative receptionist is responsible for performing administrative tasks, handling visitors' inquiries and concerns, verifying appointments, and leading them to the appropriate personnel and department, as well as handling and routing calls. Administrative receptionists also keep records of the staff meeting and executive conference, including company and promotional events. They receive packages and mail, sort documents, manage office supply inventories, create incident reports, and report suspicious guests within the premises. An administrative receptionist must have excellent communication and customer service skills, especially on resolving and escalating complaints.

    Now, we'll look at administrative receptionists, who generally average a lower pay when compared to department secretaries annual salary. In fact, the difference is about $3,971 per year.

    While both department secretaries and administrative receptionists complete day-to-day tasks using similar skills like patients, customer service, and data entry, the two careers also vary in other skills.

    While some skills are shared by these professions, there are some differences to note. "medical terminology," "patient care," "secretarial support," and "meeting minutes" are skills that have shown up on department secretaries resumes. Additionally, administrative receptionist uses skills like phone calls, appointment scheduling, bank deposits, and telephone switchboard on their resumes.

    Now, let's take a closer look at the financials in each career. The technology industry tends to pay more for administrative receptionists with an average of $32,669. While the highest department secretary annual salary comes from the government industry.

    The average resume of administrative receptionists showed that they earn similar levels of education to department secretaries. So much so that the likelihood of them earning a Master's Degree is 1.6% less. Additionally, they're less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree by 0.3%.