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What Questions To Ask In An Interview For Administrative Assistant

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What Computer Programs And Software Are You Comfortable Using

Top 5 Administrative (Admin) Assistant Interview Questions and Answers

Hiring managers generally dont mind doing some computer training, but they want to see you have some experience using different software and are willing to learn any other programs needed on the job.

People who are hiring admin assistants are often looking for experience in Microsoft Office Suiteespecially PowerPoint to help craft internal or external presentations for the team. Depending on the job, hiring managers might want a candidate who is proficient in social media, can manage online conferencing, is adept in document creation, or has experience using collaboration software, says Stephanie Naznitsky, the executive director of OfficeTeam, a division of Robert Half that specializes in placing highly skilled office and administrative professionals.

Question: How Do You Stay Organized

Intent: Strong organization skills are a must for admin or support positions, particularly for executive assistants, says Crompton. After all, if you cant organize your own schedule, how are you going to help your boss stay organized?

Response: Be specific when describing how you keep on top of your time and workspace. What messaging system and calendar programs do you use? Do you have a dedicated basket or small shelf for pending projects? How do you prevent clutter from accumulating on your desk? Showing how youve mastered these systems or practices can make you a more attractive job candidate.

More Admin Assistant Questions You Should Prepare For

  • Have you been an administrative assistant before? What is the extent of your experience?
  • What do you like/dislike the most about being an admin assistant?
  • Why did you leave your last role?
  • What is your biggest accomplishment to date in this role?
  • In your previous position, what task did you find most challenging? What did you do to ensure you executes the tasks at a high level?
  • What do you think is the greatest contribution an admin assistant makes to a team?
  • What is your typing speed and error rate?
  • Describe your level of competency with computers. Which operating systems have you worked with?
  • What traditional software programs have you used? Are you comfortable with Office, Excel and other similar programs?
  • Do you have any specific tools you like to use for time management?
  • What kind of supervisor brings out the best in you? What sort of people do you work the best with?
  • Do you tend to like working independently or as a member of a team?
  • What work schedule do you envision for yourself in this role? Are you open to working overtime?
  • Describe a time that you didnt get along with someone in the office and what you did to mediate the situation.
  • Have you ever encountered a direct superior that was difficult to work with? How did you manage the relationship?
  • What role do you think that the admin assistant plays in corporate culture?
  • What strategies do you employ when prioritizing your tasks?
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    What Are Your Strongest Areas Of Expertise

    Given the broad range of tasks that administrative assistants are often asked to cover, nows the time to blow your own horn. Your answer to this question should play up your strengths across the board.

    Possible answer: Be specific. Rather than saying Im good with computers, talk about your training, certifications, and experience. For example, discuss any business courses youve completed, or specifics like a Microsoft specialist certification. Mention any responsibilities you were given in past jobs because of your strength in a specific area, like written communication or dealing with the public.

    What Skills Should I Put On My Administrative Assistant Resume

    Administrative Job Interview Questions and Best Answers ...

    When you apply for a job as an administrative assistant, make sure you highlight the skills that are essential to the position and that will help you stand out from other applicants. Written and verbal communication skills are essential to this role.

    In addition, you will need excellent time management and organizational skills to keep track of your varied responsibilities. Recruiters will focus on candidates equipped with software and computer skills to help them fulfill their duties.

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    Are You Familiar With Any Planning And Organization Tools

    Administrative assistants need to be highly organized and able to manage their time well. They achieve this by using tools to manage tasks such as planning meetings, tracking events, or monitoring project milestones. This question gauges your knowledge of essential planning tools. Mention the tools and software you’ve used before and your preferences. Explain what they helped you achieve and how you use them to stay organized.

    Example:I’ve used several tools to help me achieve success in my work. In my previous position, I used the Microsoft Outlook to manage several of the senior managers’ schedules, ensuring they never missed a meeting or appointment. I also like Microsoft Project for office initiatives that require a lot of collaboration, so we can keep everyone on track and monitor progress.”

    How Do You Keep Administrative Schedules Organized On A Daily Basis

    The interviewer may ask you this question mainly to assess how your administrative and organizational skills match up with the requirements of the position. Your answer will also allow the employer to get a sense of how you might perform the administrative duties of keeping track of multiple schedules and appointments and whether you can complete your daily tasks competently and in a timely manner.

    Example answer:In my role as an office assistant, organization is a top priority. I start my day by first compiling a to-do list of all tasks that must be completed that day. Then I check my calendar for any meetings, appointments or other scheduled events so I am aware of them. I am constantly taking calls and checking my email for any new tasks as they come up so I can follow up with them accordingly.

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    Iq Test And Personality Test

    You may have to deal with an IQ test, and a personality test in your interview. The tests are not common in small business environment, but you can definitely experience them in big corporations, and agency recruitment.

    When hiring administrative assistants, interviewers look for an IQ score between 90 and 115 points. If you do better, they will consider you tooclever for the job.

    You should not worry about the tests, however. You can not prepare for the IQ test, or the personality test, in advance Just be honest, and try your best when completing the test.

    Additional Administrative Assistant Interview Questions

    Administrative assistant interview questions to ask
    • What kind of computer experience do you have? What programs have you used in the past?

    • Tell me about a time you had to prioritize multiple tasks and manage them through completion.

    • You have multiple project deadlines due in the next three days. They are all from different supervisors. How would you handle this?

    • How would you feel if you worked on a task for a week only to complete it and be told by your manager that it needs to be redone in a different format?

    • If you were hiring an administrative assistant, in general, what would you be looking for in a candidate?

    • What have you done in the past to foster communication within the office or between departments?

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    Administrative Assistant Interview Questions And Answers

    When you’re interviewing for an administrative assistant job, the interviewer will want to learn about how relevant your qualifications are for the position and how you would fit in with the company and the department.

    Because the job requires both administrative and interpersonal skills, hiring managers will often ask about the specific attributes you have that qualify you for the position, as well as your less quantifiable people skills.

    Answers To The Most Common Administrative Assistant Interview Questions

    Every interview session has a unique set of questions. However, there are common job interview questions that help interviewers fully understand the candidate, their technical and soft skills, and their level of expertise. Weve broken these down into general, technical, and behavioral questions. Weve also provided sample answers to help ease the interview process.

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    If You Were To Hire Me What Might I Expect In A Typical Day

    This shows your eagerness about the position, Harrison says, and it gives you a better idea of what the job would be like on a daily basis so you can decide whether you want to pursue it.

    “A frank conversation about position expectations and responsibilities will ensure not only that this is a job you want, but also one that you have the skills to be successful in,” he says.

    Q What Software Applications Can You Work With

    Medical Assistant Interview Questions

    Computer can be your best friend, or your worst enemy. It can make you more effective, and it can slow you down in work. But you should try to befriend it, and build a strong relationship with the machine, because unless you apply for an administrative assistant job in one of the least developed countries of our world, you will work with computer all day long.

    Make a list of software programs you can work with, and mention each of them in your interview. Tell us how long you have been working with the software, and how it has helped you in your past job , to work more effectively. You can even say that you plan to attend evening computer classes, to improve your skills, or to learn other programs that will help you in your job and life.

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    How To Prepare For A Receptionist Interview

    At many organizations, receptionists are the face of the company. Every new client, job applicant, employee, or third-party vendor will pass by or check in with a receptionist, so employers are eager to find someone who will be responsible, friendly, and calm.

    Take the time to review the questions you will most likely be asked during the interview, examples of how to respond, and tips for making the best impression during your job interviews.

    What Kind Of Strategies And Mindset Is Required For This Role

    An admin assistant is the eyes and ears of a firm, managing day-to-day administration for one or more executives, a group, or a network. They have unique and important insights into the companys culture, effectiveness, and future development. The interviewer needs to know if you are aware of the specific methods and mentality required for the role.

    Sample Answer

    An administrative assistant should have strong organizational qualities, clear communication skills, ambition and motivation, IT literacy, integrity and discretion in order to add value to their organizations and prosper in their professions. I believe it will be difficult to achieve in this profession without these talents and mindset.

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    Q6 What Is The Most Difficult Part Of Being An Admin Assistant Admin Assistant Interview

    • This question assesses your knowledge of the role.
    • Demonstrate you can embrace difficult parts of the job.
    • Give an example of when you have successfully completed the difficult aspect of the role.

    I find the most difficult part of the admin assistant role is having to rely on external partners and organisations to get a specific task completed. When I am relying on external partners or businesses to respond to queries or questions, it can be challenging and frustrating, as the success of your own task relies on them responding and doing their part of the job in a timely manner.

    Demonstrate you can embrace difficult parts of the job

    Although this part of the role can be frustrating, I quite enjoy chasing people and putting pressure on them to do their task, simply because my job is reliant on them performing. I am always courteous and polite when dealing with people, companies or partners but I do find that being in regular contact with them during the task completion process helps to get the job completed more quickly.

    Interview Questions For Administrative Support Staff

    Interview Questions for Executive Assistants to Ask the Executive

    August 13, 2016 By Teena Rose, Interview Coach | 325-2149

    The foundation of any profitable company is made up of an effective and productive support staff.

    The receptionists and secretaries help to make managers, executives, and entire departments do great things.

    The below list of interview questions for administrative assistants apply to the following professional fields:

    Medical & Legal Assistants Sales Support Assistants Personal Assistants to CEOs Teaching Assistants Project Management Assistants Personal Injury Assistants Marketing Administrative Accounting & Financial Services Laboratory Operations Human Resources Program Veterinary Activities Business Support Customer Service Public Relations

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    Admin Assistant Job Description

    To begin, lets take a look at the admin assistant job description:

    We are looking for a responsible Administrative Assistant to perform a variety of administrative and clerical tasks. Duties of the Administrative Assistant include providing support to our managers and employees. Planning and organising daily tasks, managing diaries and appointments, not taking, prioritising tasks and communicating with our customers and clients.

    From this, there are 4 relevant interview questions:

    Q1. Give an example of when you have provided support to a team within an administrative role.Q2. Describe a situation when you had to plan and organize multiple tasks.Q3. Give an example of when you have took notes during an important meeting. Q4. Describe a situation when you have communicated effectively with customers.

    What Are Your Strongest Strengths And How Can You Use Them To Help You Succeed As An Administrative Assistant

    If you are asked this question, offer an honest answer to the interviewer. Consider one to three strengths that you believe show your professionalism and degree of expertise.

    Sample Answer

    My greatest professional assets, in my opinion, are my communication and organizational abilities. I managed the companys email account and prepared weekly updates for team members in my previous employment. Through these email updates, I was able to keep the team organized and on task, and everyone found them to be so beneficial that they became part of the assistants daily job. If hired for the position, I would put these skills to work to boost the companys productivity.

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    How Do You Juggle Competing Assignments

    This question is related to queries about time management, but it goes more specifically to your judgement when it comes to prioritizing work. If youre interviewing for an administrative assistant role that requires you to work for multiple people, or for a team, multitasking will be central to the job.

    Possible answer: Talk specifically about how youve communicated in the past with supervisors and team members to prioritize and determine which tasks are most important. You might also offer a specific work-related example that illustrates good decision-making in prioritizing a long to-do list.

    Describe A Time When You Failed In This Role And The Lesson You Learnt

    Top 10 senior administrative assistant interview questions ...

    This question may be the most significant factor in winning the job, but it all relies on your story and how it makes the recruiter feel. The interviewer can tell if you are a growth-oriented person or if you struggle with obstacles based on your response.

    Sample Answer

    My present position is processing insurance claims for our client. In one case, I made an unintentional error about the clients information, and the company faced a lot of criticism as a result. Our team suffered as a result of the error, which was alarming. I was keen not to make the same mistake twice, so I talked to my boss about work tactics I might use to avoid making the same mistake again. I havent made any more task errors since then, and Im much better at keeping track of my work.

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    Q1 Why Do You Want This Job And What Can You Bring To The Role Admin Assistant Interview

    • Refer to the job description.
    • Tell them you already have experience within this type for role.
    • List the qualities you have that match the job description.

    I have studied the job description in detail and I feel strongly that I have the skills, qualities and experience to match the role. For example, part of the role requires an ability to plan, organise and be responsible for the organisations day-to-day activities. In my previous role I was praised for this type of work. I believe I have extensive experience of organising all types of work.

    Refer to the job description

    I can be relied upon to organise all of your tasks and will never miss an important deadline. In addition to being organised, I set myself very high-standards, have solid communication skills, can be trusted to deal with your customers and clients and am competent in all administrative software packages such as Excel, Word and PowerPoint. I feel strongly you will be impressed with my work ethic and I will not let you down if I am successful at interview today.

    Interview Questions To Ask Human Resources Assistant Candidates

    Below are a list of Interview questions for Human Resources Assistant to get you started. You can access our downloadable resource called for more interview tips and downloadable interview forms to use during the hiring process.

    1) What is your approach to problem-solving? Give an example of where your approach has been effective.

    2) Describe how you like to be managed, and the best relationship youve had with a previous boss.

    3) Describe an ideal work environment or the perfect job.

    4) What would you have liked to do more of in your last position? What held you back?

    5) What experience do you have with interpreting policy and disseminating guidelines and developing procedures for others?

    6) Describe your experience working with highly confidential information. How would you handle an employee who requests confidential information from you?

    7) What skill set do you think you would bring to this position?

    8) Tell us a bit about your work background, and then give us a description of how you think it relates to our current HR Assistant job opening.

    9) Describe a process or system that you improved so internal customers/employees would be better served.

    10) After learning about this opportunity, what made you take the next step and apply for the job?

    Grab our downloadable HR Assistant Interview Guide along with a handful of other helpful human resources interview questions guides to help staff up your HR team.

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