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Admin Assistant, Executive Assistant, Office Administrator, Office Facilities Manager, Executive Personal Secretary, Office Coordinator, Professional Assistant, whatever your job title is, you’re the reason everything in your office runs like a well-oiled machine.
Without you, your boss might not even know when his next appointment is.
Despite that, you’re not a precious commodity in the workforce because thousands of applicants have the same skills for resumes.
In a world where typing and email management are a dime a dozen skills, you need to prove that you’re a cut above the rest with a solid Administrative Assistant resume.
This guide will show you:
Resumes come in three formats:
The reverse-chronological resume format is the most common format used by applicants. And many admin jobs are with more traditional firms. That’s why it might be better to stick with this tried and tested format.
It’s best to avoid the functional or skills-based resume format. That’s because it hides your experience and focuses on your skills. While that sounds like a good deal, your skills aren’t backed by proof.
Not sure which resume format will work best for you? Read our guide: “3 Resume Formats: How to Choose the Best One [Examples]”
What’s a good resume template for an Administrative Assistant?
It’s best to pick a clean design that’s easy to scan and highlights your skills and achievements.
Administrative Assistant job skills are based on organization. So, a chaotic design will reflect negatively on you. Steer clear of Comic Sans and other funny-looking fonts.
Have your resume saved in different formats depending on what’s required on the job advertisement, says Sarah Dowzell, COO at Natural HR.
Some agencies prefer resumes in MS Word format, so they can add their logo to the file before sending it to a client,” adds Dowzell.
If the job offer does not specify a file format, consider saving your resume as a PDF. The PDF format is the safer bet because it preserves formatting, font, and spacing. Using it ensures your resume is readable on any computer and in print.
Still not sold on saving your resume as a PDF? Need to see the pros and cons for yourself? Read our guide: “Word vs PDF Resume: What is the Best Resume Format?”
Include your complete name, phone number, and professional email address.
Here’re some extra things you can consider adding:
Adding your address is optional. It is no longer necessary to add it to a modern resume. And excluding it might be better if you are applying for a job that isn’t local.
Pro Tip: Review your social media accounts to check for unprofessional content. Also, take a moment to explore all of LinkedIn’s different features.
Not sure how to make your LinkedIn profile reach All Star capacity? Read our guide on how to optimize your LinkedIn profile: “How to Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile to Get More Jobs”
Whatever introduction you use, it should be catchy but concise.
When to use a resume objective for an Administrative Assistant resume:
If you’ve been employed for some time, you’re better off with a resume summary.
What’s a resume objective?
A resume objective is like an elevator pitch that explains what you’ve already achieved and why you’re perfect for the role.
Examples of an Admin Assistant Resume Objective
Strong Trait + Position + Value for the Employer
Multi-tasking English Graduate with proven communication, travel planning, and email management skills. Seeking a position as an Administrative Assistant at Acme Company, where I can leverage my organizational and research skills to help your team.
Looking for an Administrative Assistant role where I can apply my skills in travel planning, researching, and email management. I’m a self-starter that wants to make a difference in organizing your office.
What’s a resume summary?
A resume summary explains your most notable skills, achievements, and qualifications.
That way, the recruiter can easily verify that your experience matches their needs. It’s also a good place to insert keywords listed in the job description.
Examples of an Admin Assistant Resume Summary
Administrative Assistant with 5 years of experience in juggling the schedule and travel plans of multiple executives. (Headline that includes the job title)
Adept in handling the busy schedules and travel plans of 3 corporate executives, while juggling other general office administration duties. Can execute appointment management, writing corporate emails, and bookkeeping while meeting deadlines.
Administrative Assistant with experience in schedule and travel management for executives. Well-versed in handling office management duties, appointment management, corporate communication, and basic bookkeeping.
Tips for Writing a Resume Summary or Objective for an Administrative Assistant Resume
Pro Tip: Sometimes it’s easier to write an introduction after you’ve finished the other sections of your resume. That’s because what you write here will probably be based on other sections. So, if you’re unsure what to write, just start with the other sections first.
Still not sure how to write a resume summary for your Admin Assistant resume? Read our guide for tons of extra tips and examples: “A Resume Summary That Will Get You the Job [7 Secret Steps]”
Back up the claims in your resume introduction with stellar examples from your employment record. When I say examples, I mean examples of the impact you made in previous roles.
Your work history section isn’t just a long list of all the responsibilities you’ve ever had. It’s where you differentiate yourself among other candidates with similar resume office skills.
Sample Administrative Assistant Resume Work History:
Administrative Assistant October 2013- Present
Tips for Writing Administrative Experience in Your Resume
Did you do anything (new procedure or initiative) that can directly translate to saved time or money?
Did you train anyone?
Did your boss ever praise you for doing something well?
Have you ever received an award or promotion related to your work?
List of Power Words to Pair with Your Admin Assistant Resume Qualifications
Let’s say you implemented a procedure for other employees to schedule meetings with your boss. Because of that procedure, back and forth scheduling emails were minimized. You’ve also minimized meeting interruptions because now everybody knows there’s a procedure in place.
How much time did that save you and your boss? Estimate it, then write it as the first bullet point in your role.
Decreased time spent in handling appointment requests by 40% after implementation of a new scheduling procedure.
Having a hard time coming up with achievements for your Administrative Assistant resume? Read our guide: “Examples of Professional Achievements to Put on a Resume [3 Tips]”
Let’s start with the basics.
Start your education section by listing the highest level of education you finished.
Include the name of your school, your degree, your major, and the year you graduated. If you’re still in school, list the year you’re expected to graduate. Don’t include your GPA unless it’s impressive and recent.
If you completed college, don’t include your secondary school information.
BA in Business Economics - 2012
University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA)
What if You Don’t Have a College Degree?
Not all Admin Assistants have completed a college education.
There is some debate about whether or not having a degree should be on the list of mandatory Administrative Assistant qualities.
So, I asked a couple of small business owners and recruiters if they’d hire an Administrative Assistant without a degree.
Their answers were consistent:
“If they had the basic skill sets I’m looking for, I wouldn’t discriminate against someone who didn’t finish college. Someone gave me that same chance,” says Camille Jamerson, CEO and Senior Consultant at CDJ & Associates.
Joanne Munekawa, Career Services Manager at Employment BOOST, adds, “Having a degree as an Admin Assistant could make it seem like you’re too expensive unless the role is for an executive assistant.”
That said, it’s hard to ignore that there are still jobs and industries where a bachelor’s degree is a minimum requirement for entry-level applicants. Read the job advertisement carefully, so you don’t waste your time.
What if you have a GED or are continuing your education? How do you put that on a resume for an Administrative Assistant? Read our guide to find out: “How to Put Your Education on a Resume [Tips & Examples]”
Communication, computer literacy, organization, problem-solving, and research are common Administrative Assistant skills for resumes. Of course, it doesn’t end there.
Administrative Assistants with a wide variety of skills need less training, which means they can hit the ground running. That’s why some Administrative Assistants can command a higher salary compared to others in the same field.
Below is a list of valuable Administrative Assistant skills for resumes. These examples of skills for resumes also double as Administrative Assistant keywords because some employers use them to filter applications.
Since many Admin Assistants do work outside of their traditional job scope, applicants with experience in social media, cost reduction, social responsibility and community outreach, and basic photo editing will have a leg up against other applicants.
Administrative Assistant Resume Examples of Quantify Your Skills
Fluent in English, Spanish, and Italian.
Fluent in multiple languages.
Skilled transcriptionist typing at 65 WPM.
Need some more ideas about what skills to include on your resume? Read our article: “What Skills to Put on a Resume? [Examples+ 6 Proven Tips]”
If you’ve ever taken on side projects, you can add them to your Administrative Assistant resume to spice up your qualifications.
“Side projects” can include freelance work, volunteer work, or personal projects.
But how do you include them on your resume?
Well, you can add freelance work directly to your experience section. You would write a freelance entry the same as a paid job entry. Adding freelance work is especially beneficial for people who otherwise have gaps in their work history or skill sets.
You can add volunteer work to your hobbies and interests section. If you haven’t considered adding a hobbies and interests section, you may want to think about it. And that’s especially true if the company to which you are applying has a strong office culture.
More and more employers are looking for candidates who fit their company’s culture.
But let’s say you happen to have completed a lot of projects in your free time that don’t fall under freelance or volunteer work.
What do you do with these?
You can add a separate section to your resume titled “Projects.” Make sure you keep subheadings like this simple, other Applicant Tracking System (ATS) software can’t read them.
Next, you will add the following:
Don’t use “CEO,” “Owner,” or “Consultant.” Those titles do nothing to explain what you do.
Use a job title that describes your work while giving the impression that the organizations did not formally employ you to work on projects.
“Independent Executive Assistant”
The important thing to consider here is your agreement with the company. Are you allowed to disclose that you do/did work for them, or was there a non-disclosure involved?
If you’re allowed to list the company name, do so. Add each project as a bullet point, and include any achievements you’ve accomplished for each company.
If you’re not allowed to disclose the company’s name, use a generic description of the business or industry. Add a few bullet points that explain the basic nature of the project you completed.
Independent Administrative Assistant- 2012 to 2015
Created a social media account for a car dealer.
Responded to customer queries for travel quotations.
Created and maintained schedules and travel plans for their Senior Tax Consultants.
Have you ever considered adding a hobbies and interests section to your resume? Your hobbies can show that you’re a perfect fit for a job with a strong office culture. Read our guide to learn how: “Best Examples of Hobbies & Interests To Put on a Resume (5 Tips)”
Finally, you’ll want to write a cover letter to send along with your fully-customized Administrative Assistant resume.
Aim for a succinct letter that demonstrates why you’re perfect for the job. But don’t be too formal. You’ll sound just like every other applicant on the planet.
Play up your cover letter with a little show of humor and personality. Insert an interesting backstory that connects you to the company. Or lead with the name of the person who referred you to the position, if there’s one.
Still don’t know how to get started with your cover letter? That’s okay. We’ve got you covered. Here’s our complete guide on how to write a perfect cover letter: “How To Write A Cover Letter [Complete Guide With Examples]”
Writing a sizzling resume for an Administrative Assistant is easy with ample research and the right template. Here’s a recap of those steps:
Charley Mendoza is a freelance writer covering career development and business. She's an expert in resume writing, interviewing, and negotiating, a topic she covers in publications such as Tutsplus, Business Insider, Brazen Careerist and more.