Administrative Professional’s Day: How to Hire an Administrative Assistant

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According to BLS data , there were 3.3 million administrative professionals in the workforce. Because of how many of these jobs are out there, you may need to hire administrative assistants for your business.

On this Administrative Professionals Day, we’ll look at everything you need to know about hiring administrative assistants. It might sound straightforward, but it can be challenging in a competitive job market.

Keep reading, and we’ll walk you through the entire process so that you can find the best administrative professional talent.

Decide if You Would Benefit

First, you’ll need to evaluate whether it would be beneficial for your company to hire the right administrative assistant. They can offer administrative support and help you get more done by taking care of routine office tasks, like:

  • Scanning
  • Filing
  • Scheduling meetings
  • Sending invoices
  • Answering calls and questions
  • Arranging meetings
  • Managing office situations
  • Communicating with clients
  • Maintaining databases
  • Overseeing office management

They will ensure that these tasks don’t fall through the cracks. This employee will give you more time to grow your business and increase your profits.

Figure Out What Type of Administrative Assistant You Need

If you need someone to take care of all of those roles, you’ll need to decide what type of administrative assistant position you want to hire. While some people assume that administrative assistants and administrative secretaries are the same things, they have quite a few differences.

For example, an administrative secretary focuses on taking phone calls, scheduling appointments, and organizing files. An administrative assistant will perform all of those tasks, but they will also manage the office’s spending and meetings.

You could also hire an administrative specialist, who will take on all the responsibilities that an assistant would do. But on top of that, they will also do research, plan meetings and conferences, and manage the office-wide communication channels.

If you hire an executive assistant, they will also be in charge of planning events, preparing expense reports, recording meeting minutes, and arranging travel.

Write a Good Job Description

Writing a good job description will help you narrow down what job duties you’ll need to include.

Being as specific as possible will help candidates determine whether or not they want to apply for that role. There are many administrative assistant job description templates that you can use, but make sure that you customize them.

When writing it, make sure you only list the requirements for a candidate. If you include a long list of requirements, you may deter many people from applying for your job.

Research Salary Ranges

Depending on what state you’re recruiting in, some states require that you post the salary ranges for the job in the description. So before you post your job opening, research the laws in your state because they’re quickly changing.

You’ll also want to research the salary trends for that position. Even if it’s not legally required, posting it in the job description is essential not to waste your time interviewing candidates only to find out they can’t accept your salary range. According to some research, money is the most critical factor for 67% of job seekers .

You can start by using something like the Robert Half Salary Guide. This guide will help you figure out what compensation is fair for your area and the type of administrative professional you’re trying to hire. It’s important to provide a range to adjust the salary based on a candidate’s skills and level of experience.

Source Potential Candidates

While posting an opening on niche job boards is important, it may not be enough. You may not be able to find qualified candidates, and your recruiters may need to source them from other areas.

Social media is an excellent resource for recruiters and hiring managers, but they still may need more powerful tools. This is where AI could come in handy.’s powerful AI sourcing tool pulls job profiles from online sources and compiles them into one database that you can search to find the ideal candidate. You can search for candidates based on skills that you want them to have, and the tool will find similar candidates and rank them for you. Once it’s compiled a list, your business will get a list emailed to you. After you identify which candidates you like, the tool can send optimized and automated outreach emails to those candidates.

Use Assessments

Once you’ve found some candidates that you think may be a good fit, you might want to send them some assessments before doing a phone interview.

You could send them something like a project, written assessment, or give them a sample project. For example, you could ask the candidates to compose an email or manage a mockup of schedules.

This way, you can judge if their skills match their resume.

Set Up Interviews

Once you’ve narrowed down your candidate list, you’ll start doing interviews. If you want to save time, you should even do these remotely. Set them up and have access to their assessments so that you can review that in the interview.

During the interview, evaluate how punctual the candidate is, if they’re well-spoken, or seem to know what they’re talking about. The interview will also allow you to ask more in-depth questions but be prepared for any questions the candidate might ask you.

While interviewing the candidate is essential, they’re also interviewing you to ensure they would be a good match for the job. To help them evaluate the culture, you may even want to have an interview where you have multiple team members on the call.

Screen for Skills

When you’re interviewing candidates, you need to screen for the necessary skills a candidate would need to complete the job. Your recruiters may want to work closely with hiring managers to know exactly what to look for before hiring an administrative professional. For example, if the hiring manager typically uses Outlook for their calendar, you don’t want to hire someone who only wants to use Google Calendar.

Recruiters will have to search for two types of skills: hard and soft skills. Hard skills are the skills that are directly related to the work that administrative assistants will do. Soft skills usually are how a candidate will relate to other people based on their social skills.

For an administrative professional, you’ll typically want to look for these hard skills:

  • Scheduling
  • Data entry
  • Expense reports
  • Software experience
  • Administrative tasks
  • Customer Service

For the soft skills, you’ll want to identify qualities like:

  • Organization
  • Social skills
  • Communication / Writing
  • Typing
  • Multitasking
  • Ability to learn
  • Teamwork

Hire and Onboard

Once you find a candidate who would make a great administrative assistant, you’ll need to make sure that you send them an offer letter. Calling the candidate can be great, but you may also want to send it over email to handle all of the paperwork. If you send an email, make sure that you include the salary amount, benefits, start date, and the job description.

If they accept the job offer, you’ll then start onboarding them after their start date. A good onboarding process is crucial to ensure that they stay as long as possible. This can make a good impression on the candidate.

A new administrative assistant might have several challenges adjusting to the new job. Try and make it as easy as possible for them. Have a supportive onboarding process, and encourage them to reach out if something is confusing to them. Assigning a mentor to them can also really help the transition.

Onboarding is a critical final step in the hiring process that should not be overlooked. Make an excellent first impression and get the new hire up and running fast by having a detailed and organized onboarding process.

Get Help Recruiting Administrative Professionals

While this might sound like an easy process, it could be challenging to find administrative assistants. As the job market becomes more competitive, recruiters struggle to keep up with the demand for work.

If you notice that your HR team is struggling, may be able to help. As experts in everything about recruiting, we have the solutions that will help you hire a great administrative professional, but we can also help you hire for other roles as well.

If you’re interested in hearing more about how our extensive network of recruiters or our powerful AI sourcing tool can help you, contact us today !


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By Alyssa Harmon