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What is a Secretary?

The role of a Secretary is to provide administrative support to managers and executives. Duties vary depending on the size and nature of the company but clerical work is typically the Secretary’s prime focus; typing, filing, data entry and bookkeeping for example.

Often serving as receptionists, Secretaries greet clients and visitors and direct them according to who they need to see. They answer phones, direct calls, take messages and handle email correspondence. A Secretary is also responsible for making appointments, maintaining schedules, booking travel arrangements for senior staff and preparing expense reports.

A Secretary may manage the administration of conferences or meetings, organising catering and preparing documents as well as taking and distributing minutes. Assigned to either one specific person or assisting many, Secretaries might answer directly to a senior manager or executive or they could report to an administrative assistant.

What do Secretaries do?

  • Answering phones and directing calls, emails and messages.
  • Managing appointments, meetings and travel arrangements.
  • Greeting and assisting clients and visitors.
  • Taking and transcribing dictation, memos and meeting minutes.
  • Maintaining databases, spreadsheets and filing systems.
  • Preparing reports, meeting notes, presentations and other documents.
  • Scheduling maintenance of equipment and ordering office supplies.

Career snapshot for Secretary

  • The average age of working Secretaries is 48.
  • 4.20% of Secretaries are male.
  • 44.50% of Secretaries work full-time and on average they work around 35 hours per week.
  • With A Certificate III or IV, Secretaries get paid $993 per week Before Tax.
  • Unemployment levels are below average.
  • In 2015 records showed 44,800 employed Secretaries.
  • The projected growth of the profession is estimated to be in decline with employment numbers around 33,600 by 2020.