How to Become an Administrative Assistant

Overview & Salaries

Recommended Degree:
The right degree for you depends on the industry and company you apply for. Usually some college or a certificate can be useful to have in most positions. If you are looking to get into a competitive position, then a bachelors degree may be useful for you.

Begin your career path today by signing up for free information from one of our accredited colleges below that offer programs to help get you started in administrative assisting.

How Much Does an Administrative Assistant Make? 

  • $32,840* for Administrative Assistants
  • $49,290* for Executive Secretaries

(national median salary, to view salaries in your state click on the “Best Places to Work” tab up top)

Expected growth from 2012-2020:
+479,500 additional people employed

Specialization Options:
Legal, medical, executive assisting, office, and dental.

(all information above provided by the BLS)

Discover the Best Places to Become an Administrative Assistant, Clerk, or Secretary

Employment and Salary Information by State for Administrative Assistants

Below is an interactive map that illustrates the employment and salary data for Administrative Assistants by US state. All data has been derived from the 2012 Bureau of Labor Statistics.

These five cities tend to attract the most career opportunities in a wide array of industries from finance to energy to entertainment.

  • New York, New York
  • Houston, Texas
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Los Angeles, California

Employment and Information Data for Administrative Assisting

Why Become an Administrative Assistant?

When it comes to keeping a business humming, many top executives depend on organized and reliable administrative support staff. In fact, the administrative staff – administrative assistants, secretaries, clerical workers – perform key support functions vital to many different types of organizations.

And in today’s competitive business environment, it is often the executive with the best support teams that make the way up an organization’s depth chart.

Recommended Courses to Help You Become an Administrative Assistant

  • Accounting Principles
  • Introduction to Business
  • Computer Applications in Business
  • Introduction to Marketing
  • Principles of Management
  • Computerized Accounting
  • Applied Business Math
  • Business Writing
  • Business Law
  • Macroeconomics
  • Business Finance
  • Introduction to Business Administration
  • Management Principles

Degrees to Help You Earn an Administrative Assisting Career

In the administrative profession it is not unusual for an assistant or secretary to start out in a group capacity (working for the office as a whole) and then to move along and up with specific executives. Often, top executives insist on bringing their own team into new jobs and that usually starts with administrative assistants or secretarie.

A certificate program can provide valuable administrative skills necessary for entrance to many business roles.

Associate’s Degree
A two-year degree focusing on administrative support functions also helps prepare students for entry-level employment in the business world. Courses include many basic business principals that can often be applied toward more advanced degrees.

Bachelor’s Degree
The four-year bachelor’s curriculum is offered in many different disciplines and majors from accounting to finance to marketing, among many others. Each provides the skills and experience necessary to work in an administrative capacity.