Office Assistant Salary
Job Description for Office Assistant
As the title implies, an office assistant assists in an office. The assistant will handle incoming phone calls and messages and will perform filing duties. The office assistant may be called upon to assist in typing memos and letters and transcribing hand-written notes as well, and most employers will require some degree of typing proficiency for this job.Read More...
Additionally, the office assistant typically helps to keep the work areas of the office organized and tidy. The assistant also may be called upon to perform errands for other office personnel and executives on a typical workday. This can include tasks like delivering or picking up documents or securing lunch for the office on busy days when others work at their desks. The office assistant will also normally track the use and inventory of basic office supplies and may be called upon to make regular store runs to replenish these supplies.
In most cases, there are not many specific educational requirements to work as an office assistant, and a high school diploma or equivalent is usually sufficient. Some offices will even hire current high school students to work as assistants after school or during the summer. Office assistants should have a good ability to work with others and have a pleasant manner on the phone. They typically work regular office hours during the week.
Office Assistant Tasks
- Open, sort and route incoming mail, answer correspondence and prepare outgoing mail.
- Complete and mail bills, contracts, policies, invoices and checks.
- Compile, copy, sort, and file records of office activities.
- Answer phones, direct calls and take messages.
- Operate office machines; photocopiers and scanners, facsimile machines, voice mail systems and personal computers.
Common Career Paths for Office Assistant
Office Assistants may experience a large salary bump if they progress into a role such as Executive Assistant. The latter position pays an average of $46K annually. The most common next step for an Office Assistant is to become an Administrative Assistant or an Office Manager. The former position pays an additional $4K per year on average, and the latter position pays $11K more per year.
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Popular Employer Salaries for Office Assistant
Well-known firms with a reputation for hiring numerous Office Assistants include Food Lion, Sears Holdings Corporation, State Farm Insurance Company, LHC Group, Inc., and University of Utah. Those at LHC Group, Inc. can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $30K.
The consistently lowest paying firm is Sears Holdings Corporation, where the median salary is just $19K. There isn't much variation there, either; the pay scale ranges only from $15K to $33K.
Popular Skills for Office Assistant
Survey respondents exploit a significant toolbox of skills in their work. Most notably, skills in Office Administration, Accounts Receivable, Accounts Payable, and Microsoft Office are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include Filing. People who know Data Entry usually also know Filing. Those familiar with Customer Service also tend to know Office Administration, Filing, and Microsoft Office.
Pay by Experience Level for Office Assistant
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Salaries of relatively inexperienced workers fall in the neighborhood of $26K, but folks who have racked up five to 10 years see a notably higher median of $29K. Office Assistants claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $30K. Veterans who have surpassed the 20-year mark may make no more than those who are navigating the mid-career stage.
Pay Difference by Location
Office Assistants will find that San Francisco offers an impressive pay rate, one which exceeds the national average by 42 percent. Office Assistants can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Washington (+25 percent), Seattle (+19 percent), New York (+15 percent), and Los Angeles (+13 percent). Trailing the national average by 7 percent, Miami is the market with the smallest paychecks. Employers pay around 5 percent less in Atlanta and 3 percent less in Dallas, below-median salaries for those in this field.