How to become an Administrative Assistant

Administrative assistants perform a range of administrative tasks in an organisation.

Personal requirements of a Administrative Assistant

  • Able to work methodically, accurately and neatly
  • Good oral and written communication skills
  • Able to work as part of a team
  • Neat personal appearance

Education & Training for a Administrative Assistant

You can work as an administrative assistant without formal qualifications. You will probably get some informal training on the job. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications. You may like to consider a VET qualification in business, business administration or a related field. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You can also become an administrative assistant through a traineeship in Business or Business Administration. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.

Duties & Tasks of a Administrative Assistant

Administrative assistants:

  • sort and distribute incoming mail to areas and staff within the organisation and dispatch outgoing mail
  • write business letters, reports or office memos
  • answer telephone enquiries from customers, attend to visitors and assist other staff in the organisation with their enquiries
  • operate a range of office machines such as photocopiers, computers and faxes
  • file papers and documents
  • undertake other duties such as banking, credit control or payroll functions.

Working conditions for a Administrative Assistant

Administrative assistants may be required to carry out numerous tasks in a small office, or to concentrate on just one or two specific tasks in a larger office. Administrative assistants usually work indoors, and may work alone or in a team with other administrative assistants, professional and technical staff, and tradespeople. Experienced administrative assistants may undertake more complex tasks and responsibilities.

Employment Opportunities for a Administrative Assistant

Administrative assistants are employed in most industry sectors, across government administration; business, education, health, legal and accounting services, and real estate. The continual introduction of new technology requires administrative assistants to be flexible, multiskilled and capable of responding to change. It is possible to work remotely, using online technology to communicate with clients.

Avg. weekly wage:


Future growth:


Employment by state:

ACT 2.1%

NSW 33.6%

NT 0.9%

QLD 18.6%

SA 6.4%

TAS 2.4%

VIC 26.3%

WA 9.6%

Hours worked:



Average unemployment

Gender split:

Male 30%

Female 70%

Education level:

Not completed Year 12: 13.8%

Highest qualification is secondary school: 26.3%

Highest qualification is a Certificate 3 or 4: 19.7%

Highest qualification is a Diploma or Advanced Diploma: 13.8%

Highest qualification is a Bachelor degree: 17.8%

Highest qualification is a Postgraduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate: 6.2%

Age brackets:

15-19 - 0.1%

20-24 - 6.1%

25-34 - 26.8%

35-44 - 22.6%

45-54 - 19.5%

55-59 - 8.2%

60-64 - 7.1%

65 and Over - 9.5%

*The data above is sourced from the Department of Employment’s Job Outlook website.

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