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What skills do I need for office administration jobs in the UK?

Administrators are found in almost every business within the UK. The skills required to be an office administrator vary between jobs, but there are some general skills which are essential in all office administration jobs. This article will thus highlight those skills.

Computer skills

With more companies opting for a ‘paperless office’, computer skills are essential for any office administrator. Basic knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook and Powerpoint are essential. For jobs which involve the collation of large amounts of data, it would be also useful to be conversant with Microsoft Access, being able to create a table and generate reports and queries. Touch-typing Although, touch-typing is often not a requirement in job specifications, it is a skill that is well worth investing some time and effort into learning. Being able to touch-type accurately not only gets through the work more quickly, but it is also beneficial when typing lengthy documents or inputting a significant amount of data.

Organisational skills

Office administrators need to be organised. Organisation of time and work-load is invaluable . Having a to-do list for the day or week will enable you to see at a glance the tasks that you need to complete and how long you have to complete them. Re-organisation of this list will occur regularly as new pieces of work will be required and routine tasks will have to be left in order to complete urgent reports. Maintaining filing systems Not only will administrators have to organise their time and workload, they will also have to maintain filing systems, both paper based and electronic. Being able to retrieve information quickly and efficiently is all through good organisation skills.

Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal skills are important for all office administrators including those working in a secretarial role. Being able to communicate clearly both in writing and when speaking to people is a necessity. Receptionists and office administrators need to ensure that any documents being sent out to their customers are professional looking, they have been proof-read for mistakes and accuracy of content and they provide up-to-date contact details.
Communication skills
Administrators not only need excellent communication skills when corresponding with external customers, they will also need to retain their professional communication skills, whilst working with other departments and partner agencies.

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