Administrative assistants are generally junior-level workers in any organization and are vital in the smooth operation of daily and assignment based activities there. Admin assistant is designated to individuals who are tasked with almost every supporting type of works. These positions can be anywhere in the organizational hierarchy – from the lowest strata to the one just bellow a commissioner or an officer. In most of the companies, admin assistants carry out daily routines that are of use to the professional and specialists of al domains working in that company. here are the best administrative assistant interview questions.
Generally speaking, a candidate for the admin assistant has ideally completed high school education and be eligible to apply for university. The candidates are expected to have some educational background in management studies. This position may or may not require substantial work experience in the related field as this is an entry-level position in many companies.
Below, we discuss some possible administrative assistant interview questions and answers.
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1. Why do you think you are a suitable candidate for this position?
Answer: This question allows you to state your educational backgrounds and work experiences if any. You can focus on the particular subjects that you think can be relevant to the administrative assistant interview questions. Courses in general management, office management, organizational behavior, accounts, etc can be useful to put on the initial impression to the interviewing panel. If you have worked elsewhere in a similar position. That will be a valuable advantage, otherwise, work experiences are not an important factor in this role.
To stress your suitability, you can mention other special skills like photocopying, scanning, handling telephone calls, and other daily office activities. You can mention skills like driving. Further which can help to give a message to the panel that you are worth hiring. As you can move around with petty works outside the usual workstation as well.
This is a very important question, While answering this question you have to explain your qualities that is education qualifications, skills, and experiences that make you suitable for the position.
2. What roles do you expect to do as an administrative assistant?
Answer: When it comes to administrative assistant interview questions answers. This question is probably to cross your way. If you have worked previously as an administrative assistant, you will be quite comfortable with this type of question. Similarly, If you are fresher, you may need to make a research. About the company, u are about to apply and also about the admin assistant roles in general. As it is obvious that admin assistant positions can have a variety of roles to perform.
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It is important that the candidate is well informed about the type of company he or she is applying to. The activities generally undertaken by administrative assistants are office management, logistic support, preparing documents for professionals and specialists. Similarly, making appointments, supporting logistic arrangements, etc. You should be able to describe some of these tasks in detail if asked in follow up questions.
As an administrative assistant, you have to look after all the office management parts of the organization.
3. This is a junior-level position where the remunerations package may not be so attractive for you in the long term. How will you motivate yourself to keep working in the position?
Answer: Administrative assistants are generally lower-level positions with a high volume of tasks of lesser responsibilities. Similarly, It is sometimes boring work and there are limited incentive opportunities. Exposures are also limited. This type of work can result in reduced inefficiency if there are not enough motivations. You can state a number of reasons that can mitigate the exhaustion resulting from the work.
Similarly, You may describe your positive thinking and attitude that prevents you from being controlled by negative thoughts. Further, You may also state that being of a young age and no serious family responsibilities, managing my expenses with my income is more than enough at this time of my life. So, you may clarify that there are no other reasons to affect your performance and mood at the company. Furthermore to explain this is the probable administrative assistant interview questions.
In such a situation you ought to have a positive mindset and work in a continuous manner. Since hard work attracts rewards.
4. What skills do you have to work better in this company?
Answer: Having multiple skills which can be handy in daily office work are important assets to work in the position of admin assistant. You may have effective dealing skills with the visitors. Similarly, You may be able to prepare and handle the office documents. You have to do a bit of research about the company you are applying to. This will help to sort list the skills you would need to do the type of work there. In this way, you can enlist the skills you have that could be relevant to the company you are applying to.
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Good listening and communication skill backed up by a cooperative mindset and a team player will do it for you.
5. Describe your experience in the previous companies as an admin assistant.
Answer: This question will let you describe your daily tasks and the feelings about the position itself as well. You may state all the tasks you performed in previous work as the panel may try to match the similarities of the task. Similarly, You may also mention any particular task which you have accomplished with putting extra efforts, which can also demonstrate your problem-solving skills. Experience is important when it comes to administrative assistant interview questions and answers.
If you have previously worked in the position of the admin assistant then it will surely work in your favor.
6. What are the pros and cons of working as an admin assistant?
Answer: You have to take this question on a positive note and answer with a positive lead as well. The panel may be looking for motivating reasons or the opposite side as well. So, here you can mention the good sides of working as an admin assistant. Furthermore. You may mention that you will be able to learn many things from senior professionals and specialists. You may want to state that as an entry-level position.
It is a learning opportunity for young workers without having the need to take heavy responsibilities. As an administrative assistant, it can be a window to look towards professional goals while observing the seniors carrying their roles and duties. It would not be good to list out many cons of the position as that may deliver an unintended message to the panel. Further, You may state minor facts like this position are for routine works with very little scope for innovations and creativity.
There are pros and cons to everything that you do. It depends on your analytical skills on how you use advantages for your growth and try to fix the disadvantages.
7. What are the reasons to change the job or company?
Answer: Such questions cannot be skipped away but at the same time it is not deemed a healthy behavior to mention negative things about previous work and associations. So, you may state the reasons like you have been working in the same routine work for several years and now want to look for a change. You may also say that you want to involve in different companies learn from them before seeking to start a professional career.
Try to tell that you have left your previous job seeking your professional growth and give a boost to your career. Try to skip all the negativity if anything lies during your previous job.
8. Can you say something about your computer usage skills?
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Answer: Here you can detail out the particular skills on computer usages and elaborate a bit if you have already listed downs your skills in earlier questions. You can start by stating your skills on Microsoft office package. Your typing skills and speed can be important things to mention. Typing skills are generally mentioned in words per minute speed. You can also describe your efficiency to use MS Excel and PowerPoint.
Making PowerPoint presentations and the ability to present them effectively is an important skill for an admin assistant. You may name other operating systems if you are comfortable working with the ones other than the Microsoft packages.
In modern time, the use of the internet and emails are a must. So, you can explain your efficiency in surfing internets, searching relevant information, web publishing, using emails, use of social media, etc.
The use of computer is very necessary for these years of job. Since everything is evolving. Therefore, computer usage skills have also evolved by three folds.
9. How well is your communication skills?
Answer: Making internal and external communications are an integral part of the roles undertaken by assistants in any company or organization. You may have to develop memos and forward it towards the top of the company or you may also have to pass down the notices and circulars to your colleagues. Similarly, You may explain the process of handling such communications within the organization.
Assistants are involved in external communication as well. It is the assistants that mostly draft the communication which is to be sent out in the names of the senior professionals. So, an assistant is expected to have good composition skills and knowledge of grammar at higher standards. The use of mediums like email or online modes like dropbox is important and assistants should be proficient in using such tools. Besides, as every worker is expected, an assistant should be able to convey a clear message and understand the message from supervisors as well.
Communication skills matter a lot. If you cannot communicate with the people you come across in the workplace then it might create some problem for you.
10. Are you a team player or do you perform better while working independently?
Answer: In any company, the employee may have to undergo any sort of situation. They may be a part of the larger working team or sometimes may undertake responsibilities to accomplish task single-handedly. As a worker, you should be prepared for both situations. You may express your abilities and willingness to work both independently and as a member of a larger team.
If you are working for some organization that you have to work in a team. Working in a team decreases the work burden and further work can be completed in time as well.
11. How dedicated are you towards meeting deadlines and working overtime?
Answer: You have to quite diplomatic while answering this question. Different companies have different sets of rules regarding overtime. Some are paid while some are not. While you cannot run away from the deadlines. It is obvious that you state your efforts and determination to complete the assignment or task within the deadline.
You have to take a position while talking about overtime. Once you join the company and find out that the overtimes are unpaid and almost regular. It will be difficult to maintain your performance and spirit high enough. There may arise the possibility of demoralization. So, it is better to make your stand clear regarding such conditions well in advance.
In the workplace, there can be certain situations where you have to work overtime.
12. Are you ever caught in a conflict situation in your workplace with or without involving you?
Answer: This is about handling the conflict in the workplace. Conflict management and resolutions are part of the knowledge and skill every office worker is supposed to possess these days. You may describe such events without naming the organization and person involved. You may give a reason for the conflict.
How it escalated, and how the situation was under control. You should not be hesitant to admit it if the mistake was yours. The work environment is pacified if there are more admitters than defenders. You can also put some scenarios which can be common reasons for conflict and misunderstanding in any office. After that, you may describe ways to minimize such problems.
If any situation of conflict arises you must make sure to suppress those conflicts. It would be better if you can certainly avoid those as well.
13. How do you prioritize your work as an admin assistant?
Answer: Admin assistants perform a variety of routine tasks every day. Most of those tasks are part of the work of seniors and professionals. So your deadlines and priorities are associated with the ones of the seniors. Prioritizing the task by admin assistants requires input from the immediate supervisor. There may be an urgent need for some document preparation or some urgent communication to be conveyed.
So, as an admin assistant, you would be required to maintain close coordination with your supervisor. And senior professionals and determine which task is important. Among the routine tasks, it is up to the admin assistant himself or herself to prioritize the tasks. The daily routine tasks will have minimal impact on the larger performance of the company. So, the admin assistant is expected to prioritize the urgent requirements over daily tasks and directions. Coordination with the immediate supervisor should be considered by words while prioritizing the tasks.
Prioritizing the work is very necessary while working such that no work misses from the list.
14. How do you state your stress management skills?
Answer: Though working in a junior-level position, every worker goes through some sort of stress in the office. Some may be related to assignment related stress while others may be personal. As an admin assistant, you may try to avoid any burden that you should not be facing at all. Keeping busy with the tasks and clearing the work-to-do list can be a way to minimize the stress due to workload.
It is also beneficial to understand the nature of the supervisors and colleagues and then treat them accordingly. Sometimes, the minute misunderstandings can be the reason of intense stress. While working in a lower-level position, it is advisable to be a good listener rather than an opinioned one.
Stress management skills are very important while working for the company. Meditation, yoga, exercise, etc can help you to reduce work stress.
15. Are there instances when you disagreed with your supervisor? How have you handled the situation?
Answer: Normally, an admin assistant is not considered for consultations to arrive at a decision at a company. So there remains very little chance of differences of opinion between an admin assistant and senior officials. But there may be some misunderstandings or communication gaps that may create a confusing environment in the work station.
In that case, you may take a healthy approach to talk to your supervisor to talk about the issue and clear the air. Most of them, such problems are solved by talking with concerned individuals. If the problem still persists and you think you are not wrong, you take the discussion to a higher level or in the team meetings. In any case you are expected to take a positive approach to solve the problems amicably.
There can be some disagreements and differences in views while working. It must be settled with proper confrontations and conversation.
16. Have you had the opportunity to lead a team under you and have you supervised anyone in your role as an admin assistant?
Answer: This question is an opportunity to indirectly imply that what kind of supervision you would expect from your supervisors. There will be a possibility that you may have supervised someone junior to you in the past. Though not a direct line manager, admin assistants can have the chance to supervise the lower rank workers like logistic assistants or office assistants.
In this question, you may pose yourself as a professional and benevolent supervisor who believes in creating a positive working environment in the company. You may paint a positive picture of a supervisor you would love to work under in any organization or role.
This question checks if given the opportunity you can lead a team or not. Further, this question can help you in the future growth of your career as well.
17. What are your expectations from this job?
Answer: This question is asked to make a self-assessment of yourself and provide your worth value. You may also feel free to ask some questions to the panel about the workload of the position so that it will guide you to put forth your expectation of the remuneration package.
You may also make a survey of packages to admin assistants in a similar type and level of the companies. Besides the expectation in the remunerations benefits, you also be interested in extracurricular exposures and opportunities.
Expectations from the job can be a good salary, bonuses, and other benefits.
18. How long do you think you will work with us provided you are offered this position?
Answer: Admin assistants are lower-level positions and individuals working there are expected to move up the ladder sooner or later. Some candidates are overqualified to work as an admin assistant. There may be the possibility that such individuals will be constantly looking for better opportunities. The company will also not take the movement of admin assistants as a serious matter.
As these are filled easily by the abundance of candidates available in the market. But still, too much of instability is not a desired feature in a prospective worker. So, you may commit a couple of years or for a full project, cycle depending upon the nature of the company or the tasks they perform.
This is a very important question. Most of the employer want those candidates who can work with them for a long period of time. The minimum number of years can be 2 years.
19. Do you have anything to ask us before we wind up this interview?
Answer: The interview session is now towards the end now. The interview panel may have made up of their mind by now about your performance and ranked you against your competitors. It is generally just a formality question to bid bye to you. You may ask them if you have any information to know about the company or the position. If not, you may thank them for inviting them to the interview and then leave the place of the interview.
In this section, you can ask the questions related to the company or any queries if you have relating to the position.
Summing it up,
These were some of the most probable administrative assistant interview questions that are asked in the interview. Be prepared. Further, read it multiple times before entering the interview room for desired results.
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