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Working as an Executive Administrative Assistant

Always the first person visitors greet, the executive administrative assistant is more important to the entire company, as a whole, than you may realize. In fact, the company's success is entirely dependent on the executive administrative assistant doing their job. No pressure or anything.

As executive administrative assistant, you'll complete a lot of administrative duties, but the most important part of your job will depend on your communication skills. Executive administrative assistants address client questions and concerns, schedule meetings and are even good communication resources between upper- and lower-level employees.

As you can tell, it can be a hard job. Sometimes you'll be expected to maintain long hours. That means get here as early as you can and probably stay late, too. But on top of that, the majority of your duties may not be that hard to accomplish. So other than the stress of the entire company relying on you, it's really not that stressful of a job.

What Does an Executive Administrative 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.

How To Become an Executive Administrative 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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Average Salary$46,616
Job Growth Rate-7%

Executive Administrative Assistant Jobs

Executive Administrative Assistant Career Paths

Top Careers Before Executive Administrative Assistant

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Average Salary for an Executive Administrative Assistant

Executive Administrative Assistants in America make an average salary of $46,616 per year or $22 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $65,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $33,000 per year.
Average Salary
$46,616

Best Paying Cities

Average Salary
Salary Range52k - 78k$64k$64,346
Salary Range40k - 87k$60k$59,748
Salary Range37k - 79k$55k$54,665
Salary Range37k - 78k$55k$54,638
Salary Range37k - 77k$54k$53,658
Salary Range36k - 75k$52k$52,209
$30k
$87k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Youth Focus
Executive Administrative Assistant
Executive Administrative Assistant
Youth Focus
Youth Focus
10/30/2020
10/30/2020
$37,00010/30/2020
$37,000
Executive Administrative Assistant
Executive Administrative Assistant
Aerotek
Aerotek
10/29/2020
10/29/2020
$52,17510/29/2020
$52,175
Administrative Assistant-Executive Assistant
Administrative Assistant-Executive Assistant
Vanguard Cleaning Systems
Vanguard Cleaning Systems
10/28/2020
10/28/2020
$37,56610/28/2020
$37,566
Administrative Assistant To CEO
Administrative Assistant To CEO
Robert Half
Robert Half
10/28/2020
10/28/2020
$37,56610/28/2020
$37,566
Hire Up Staffing Services
Executive Administrative Assistant
Executive Administrative Assistant
Hire Up Staffing Services
Hire Up Staffing Services
10/26/2020
10/26/2020
$33,39210/26/2020
$33,392
See More Recent Salaries

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Executive Administrative Assistant Demographics

Gender

female

86.1%

male

10.2%

unknown

3.7%

Ethnicity

White

69.8%

Hispanic or Latino

15.1%

Black or African American

9.2%

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

64.2%

French

9.4%

German

3.7%
See More Demographics

Executive Administrative Assistant Education

Majors

Degrees

Bachelors

42.1%

Associate

23.2%

High School Diploma

12.6%

Top Colleges for Executive Administrative Assistants

1. Western Carolina University

Cullowhee, NC

Tuition and fees
$3,926
Enrollment
9,835

2. Stanford University

Stanford, CA

Tuition and fees
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

3. Ball State University

Muncie, IN

Tuition and fees
$9,896
Enrollment
15,529

4. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

Tuition and fees
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

5. Bowling Green State University

Bowling Green, OH

Tuition and fees
$11,105
Enrollment
13,729

6. Cedar Crest College

Allentown, PA

Tuition and fees
$39,216
Enrollment
1,303

7. Morgan State University

Baltimore, MD

Tuition and fees
$7,900
Enrollment
6,404

8. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL

Tuition and fees
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

9. Siena Heights University

Adrian, MI

Tuition and fees
$27,124
Enrollment
2,035

10. University of Akron

Akron, OH

Tuition and fees
$11,463
Enrollment
13,676
See More Education Info

Entry Level Jobs For Becoming An Executive Administrative Assistant

Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For an Executive Administrative Assistant

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 8.8% of executive administrative assistants listed powerpoint on their resume, but soft skills such as decisionmaking skills and interpersonal skills are important as well.

Best States For an Executive Administrative Assistant

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an executive administrative assistant. The best states for people in this position are New York, California, Nevada, and New Hampshire. Executive administrative assistants make the most in New York with an average salary of $60,007. Whereas in California and Nevada, they would average $58,470 and $56,830, respectively. While executive administrative assistants would only make an average of $56,275 in New Hampshire, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New York

Total Executive Administrative Assistant Jobs:
2,236
Highest 10% Earn:
$119,000
Location Quotient:
1.49
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Alaska

Total Executive Administrative Assistant Jobs:
89
Highest 10% Earn:
$75,000
Location Quotient:
1.7
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Nevada

Total Executive Administrative Assistant Jobs:
196
Highest 10% Earn:
$83,000
Location Quotient:
0.96
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Executive Administrative Assistant Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming an executive administrative assistant. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

At Zippia, we went through countless executive administrative 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 Write an Executive Administrative Assistant Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless executive administrative 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.

View Detailed Information

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Top Executive Administrative Assistant Employers

1. US Army
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$53,674
Executive Administrative Assistants Hired: 
279+
2. JPMorgan Chase
4.9
Avg. Salary: 
$75,304
Executive Administrative Assistants Hired: 
206+
3. Kelly Services
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$29,557
Executive Administrative Assistants Hired: 
187+
4. IBM
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$84,673
Executive Administrative Assistants Hired: 
175+
5. U.S. Navy
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$53,690
Executive Administrative Assistants Hired: 
148+
6. Bank of America
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$56,114
Executive Administrative Assistants Hired: 
130+

Recently Added Executive Administrative Assistant Jobs

Updated October 2, 2020