Executive assistant job responsibilities

Last updated: February 23, 2024
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Jennifer Young
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Executive assistant job responsibilities
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If you have experience working in an office environment, you may like to apply for a job as an executive assistant.

Executive assistants work for executives in a range of industries. For example, 1.48% work for schools and colleges, and 2.63% work for security and financial industries.

But what is an executive assistant? What does an executive assistant do, and what skills do you need to be successful at this job?

In this article, we'll tell you everything you need to know about executive assistant job responsibilities and give you tips for your resume.

What is an executive assistant?

An executive assistant (EA) works closely with an executive, such as a CEO, Vice President, or Executive Director.

They offer administrative support and often deal with sensitive information. They can also act on behalf of the executive in meetings and provide input during the decision-making process.

Executive assistants usually work in an office environment, and they may assist the executive in hiring new staff.

EAs work in different industries, including education, health, information technology, the arts, government, and private enterprises.

The role is fast-paced, and to be successful, you'll need organizational skills, motivation, and great attention to detail.

You can browse executive assistant jobs in your area by visiting our job search.

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What does an executive assistant do?

If you're interested in working as an executive assistant, here are six tasks that may be part of the job description:

1. Manage calendars

Executives have busy schedules. Part of the executive assistant job description is to manage daily, weekly, and monthly calendars.

They use their time management skills to oversee the schedule and book appointments. And they’ll make sure any events, appointments, meetings, and other commitments aren’t double-booked.

Travel can be part of an executive's job, and the EA will need to make their travel arrangements.

For example, they’ll book plane tickets, plan itineraries, reserve hire cars, and organize accommodation.

2. Provide administrative support

The executive assistant supports the executive team and other clerical staff.

In addition to scheduling meetings, they'll know how to use office equipment such as the filing system, fax machine, and photocopier. When stock runs low, they'll order more office supplies.

If someone wants to speak to the executive, the EA will be the first point of contact. They'll know the ins and outs of the office and will help to recruit new staff.

3. Manage correspondence

One of the main job duties of an executive assistant is to manage correspondence. The executive may ask them to make phone calls and compose emails.

They'll answer the phone, respond to queries, and take memos. Each morning, the EA will also open letters. The mail may contain sensitive information, and they need to handle it appropriately.

4. Reconcile finance

Depending on the company, the executive assistant may need to reconcile the daily finances. For example, they may balance payments, prepare expense reports, and oversee budgets.

The executive may ask their assistant to print budget reports and input data into an accounting program.

If it's a small business, the EA may need to deposit checks and cash at the bank.

5. Take meeting minutes

The executive assistant will be at the leadership meetings. They're responsible for the schedule and taking the meeting minutes.

Before the meeting, they'll need to print any resources and organize drinks and snacks. Afterward, they'll collate the minutes and share the document with the right people.

And if there's a meeting that the executive is unable to attend, their assistant may go instead.

6. Perform word processing

Word processing is a big part of an executive assistant's job description. A good EA will know how to use MS Office programs, including Word, Outlook, Powerpoint, and Excel.

They'll need to use their typing skills to write emails, letters, and reports.

An EA may need to transcribe verbal communication or handwritten notes. And they may create presentations, update social media, and send company newsletters.

What skills do you need to be an executive assistant?

To be an executive assistant, you'll need strong computer skills and experience using Microsoft Office.

You'll need to have excellent verbal communication skills and organizational skills. Plus, you should be punctual and a team player.

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You'll be dealing with sensitive information, so you'll need to be trustworthy. And you should have a high attention to detail.

To be successful in this role, you'll need to be able to manage a busy workload, multitask, and meet deadlines. You also should be available to work full-time in a flexible, fast-paced work environment.

What are the minimum education requirements?

For most executive assistant jobs, you will need a high school diploma or equivalent. If you've completed a certification program or have a bachelor's degree in business or finance, it can boost your chances of getting a job.

Some human resources managers will expect you to have a few years of experience in administration. The company will usually provide on-the-job training to help you learn their unique processes.

How much does an executive assistant make?

The median executive assistant salary is $63,110 per year. The pay scale can vary depending on your work experience, location, and the type of company you work for.

Resume tips for executive assistant jobs

If you want to apply for an executive assistant position, it's time to put together a winning resume.

Here are our top resume tips for this job type:

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Once you’ve used these tips to craft the perfect executive assistant resume, you’re ready to apply. Not sure where to start? You can browse executive assistant jobs in your area on our job board.

Is a career as an executive assistant right for you?

Does a career as an executive assistant sound like something you'd be interested in?

We gave you a rundown of common executive assistant duties, including calendar management, word processing, correspondence, meeting minutes, finances, and administrative support.

And we told you about the skills you’ll need to be successful and explained the minimum education requirements.

Finally, we gave you our top tips for your executive assistant resume.

When you're ready, you can browse the Jobcase job search for executive assistant job openings. Alternatively, you may like to look for administrative assistant jobs.

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