Many people use administrative assistant roles as a stepping stone to break into their careers, but for some people, a clear career path isn’t always visible. If you’re an administrative assistant looking to advance your career, here are the steps you need to take.
“Mary Lou joined CSS as a rock star administrative assistant and took every task in her job description and turned it into a strategic initiative that she handled with urgency, the greatest level of organization and went above and beyond everyday for her 1st full year. She mastered the impact the front office has on the back office and went out of her way to improve processes and lesson errors. When a key position became available in the accounting department, Mary Lou was immediately recommended as the right person to learn and elevate that role! Be the Mary Lou of your administrative assistant role and you will go places!” says Sharon Tsao, CMO, Contemporary Staffing Solutions.
Determine Where You Want To Go
One of the best things about being an administrative assistant is the variety of your tasks and your exposure so many different areas of the business. Determine the types of tasks you like doing the most, and develop your skills in those areas. For example, if you have a lot of customer contact in your day and you enjoy that, focus on building your customer service and sales skills you can use those skills to springboard into a sales job or a customer experience role. If you are a whiz with numbers and spreadsheets, you may be able to parlay those skills into an accounting career track.
Assess your skills, think outside the box, determine the direction you want to go.
Build Your Skills
Once you know the direction you want to take your career, you’ll need to build your skill set. Study job descriptions of roles that interest you to learn which areas you need to focus on to close any gaps. You can build those skills by taking classes and by asking your boss for more responsibility in those areas. The more you are exposed to opportunities to build your skills, the better.
“Many companies want someone who is willing to work from the ground up and have fabulous advancement plans to support career advancement! Be flexible and consider taking on an entry level role at a fabulous company so you can get your foot in the door and excel!” Says Alyssa Reinhard, Staffing Specialist, Contemporary Staffing Solutions.
Be Prepared to Jump Ship
If you love where you work, you can strategize ways to advance your career within the organization. However, this can be a challenge for many admins. If your boss feels you are indispensable, she may not be keen on losing you to another department. Some people also struggle to earn respect in a new role because coworkers tend to think of an admin as an admin, no matter their new title.
If you’re truly interested in advancing your career, it is often wise to look for opportunities outside your current company where you can get a fresh start in your fresh role.
Work with A Professional Recruiter
Even if you’ve got a clear idea of where you want to take your career, making it happen can be easier said than done. Working with a professional recruiter is a savvy move for admins who want to advance. A recruiter will work with you to help you assess your skill set, determine the best way to cover gaps, and to connect you with roles that align with your goals.
If you are a talented administrative assistant looking to advance your career, reach out to the recruiters at Contemporary Staffing Solutions today to learn how we can help you take the next step in your career. We look forward to helping you start an exciting new chapter.