An administrative assistant is a broad ranging term for a multi-functional staff member who is able to work in a variety of different roles. Their main duty is to provide support for all the differing departments in a company. For instance, admin assistants might find themselves working in accounting, human resources, sales and marketing or in a tech department.
Their job could be secretarial, assisting high-ranking officials by handling phone calls, making appointments or perhaps giving occasional advice. They might work more as a receptionist or secretary, with scope to becoming a PA or personal assistant. The position is often the first step onto bigger things within a business and assistants must be willing to work hard to impress and progress within a company.
Depending on the specific company, an admin assistant must be able to perform a wide variety of different tasks to a high level. These can include making appointments, dealing with business clients, running personal errands for your employer, data entry, and managing inventories. Often, they have to co-operate between departments too, so they must be methodically organized.
The responsibilities are often tailored to the environment they're working in. So, if you are an assistant in the accounts department, then you would have some dealings with and understanding of the company's accounts and a high level of numeracy skills would be required. If on the other hand the assistant were involved in human resources, then good communication skills and understanding of recruitment would be a touch more beneficial.