The Five Standard Tools of the Modern Admin Assistant

Lauren Krause
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Administrative assistants serve as a figurative jack-of-all-trades for modern workplaces, as they juggle a multitude of different tasks and responsibilities over the course of the day. For these workers to remain efficient and productive, they must master crucial admin assistant skills and take advantage of the resources available to them. Fortunately, there are five simple tools for assistants that can help keep any worker performing at the top of their game.

Organization provides the foundation for an administrative worker. Without an effective organization style, admin assistants often find themselves overwhelmed by the sheer number of tasks on their plate. New assistants should focus on developing an organizational style that is simple to understand and implement in the various facets of a busy office.

Communication is another of the most important admin assistant skills. Impeccable assistants possess a strong communication style and the ability to clearly elaborate on complex subjects. This tool comes into play each and every day, as the administrative staff comes into contact with a wide assortment of different individuals, including staff members, customers and business guests. Understanding how to appropriately interact with each of these individuals is a vital tool for the admin worker.

Flexibility and versatility are admin assistant skills that give employers confidence in their support staff. Learning how to remain flexible demands an ample investment of a worker's time and energy, but without this key ability, admin workers struggle to cope with the ever-changing responsibilities of such a position.

Technological abilities are vital admin assistant skills in any office environment. From computer systems to fax machines, scanners and printers, the average administrative assistant relies on these gadgets multiple times in any given day. In fact, technology can be one of the most vital tools for assistants, as these devices make it possible to multi-task and maximize efficiency. To stay productive on the job, admin workers must become familiar and comfortable with a wide number of different technological platforms.

Expert planning capabilities are one of the admin assistant skills that employers demand from their support staff. Admin workers may be tasked with planning their employer's schedule, ordering office equipment and supplies and even handling the shifts of colleagues. Without a thoughtful planning strategy in place, administrative employees wreak havoc on the efficiency of the office.

Administrative workers fulfill roles in companies of all shapes and sizes. These professionals address pressing issues, resolve challenges for other workers, and provide the first point of contact for customers and business partners. By learning to utilize admin assistant skills, any worker can become a valuable addition to their employer's support team. Fortunately, with hard work and practice, the tools of an effective assistant are easy for anyone to master.

Photo courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at


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