To share this story, choose your platform.

Essential admin skills for your resume

Administrative positions are essential to organisational success. Great administrators drive efficiency, effectiveness and productivity. They support organisations to run like well-oiled machines.

Not everyone is cut out for an admin position, whether junior or senior. However, others thrive in these busy, fast-paced positions. Their aptitude and personality are a perfect fit for administrator positions.

If you wanting to enter an admin career, or advance the one you’re in, check out these 4 skills. They apply across public, private and not-for-profit sectors.

This expert article also shares sample resume wording to illustrate how easy it is to demonstrate your admin skills in your resume. This lets you tick all the boxes and demonstrate you’re a desirable candidate. And last, but not least, the article summarises other competencies employers find valuable in administrative candidates.

Top 4 key skills

Microsoft Office applications

Most admin roles demand the ability to use technology and often that’s multiple Microsoft Office programs like Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint. This positions administrators to work quickly and confidently. The type of programs and the amount of experience needed with each program can vary depending on the level of the admin position. You may, for example, need skills to create and work with documents and reports, develop spreadsheets, manage multiple inboxes and schedules, and work with templates. Take 5 and read this article for more details on Microsoft Office skills.

Sample resume wording

In my role as Senior Administrative Assistant, I use my in-depth knowledge of Word to prepare and format meeting agendas and minutes for the Executive Committee. I update reports and input procedures into approved templates. With sound experience with Excel, I create detailed spreadsheets that management uses for decision-making.

Prioritise and multi-task

Admin roles are busy roles. Indeed, some are continually hectic with multiple deadlines and a never-ending list of priorities. Triaging and multi-tasking are therefore critical skills, to keep matters moving forward and ensure deadlines are met without compromising on the quality of operations or work.

Sample resume wording

Recently, I worked on a major, outward-facing project that demanded the need to triage dozens of priorities to meet tight and immovable deadlines. The project involved tracking timelines and budgets. It also demanded multi-tasking. I booked venues, organised catering, arranged for technical equipment, and coordinated accommodations for important clients. The result was the successful running of a two-day, high-level meeting that ran like clockwork.


All admin roles demand excellent communication skills (oral and written). Exemplary communication is a must-have. Administrators regularly work with many people to get things done, internally and externally. This includes communicating clearly and concisely with stakeholders at multiple levels and across the organisation on expectations and requirements, so everyone is on the same page.

Sample resume wording

My daily responsibilities include listening carefully to, and communicating clearly, with multiple stakeholders who expect delivery on set priorities. I update by phone, email and in correspondence. I follow up, so deadlines are not missed. I also work closely with external suppliers, such as graphic designers, printers and couriers, to keep work progressing to timelines, including for the publishing of the organisation’s monthly stakeholder newsletter.


In administrative roles accuracy of information is key. This guarantees clarity, avoids confusion, supports an organisation’s reputation, and even saves time and money (in redoing work time and again to get it right). Risks are great if the work of administrators is not top quality.

Sample resume wording

I am fully accountable for the accuracy of my work. In addition to proofreading, I use programs like spell check and the editing function in Word to catch potential mistakes. A major responsibility is database management, including with our customer relationship management system. I am skilled with multiple database systems and cross-check high volumes of information to ensure complete and error-free entry.

Other important admin skills

  • Flexible and adaptable – show how you’re able to adjust in ever-changing environments without losing your cool or tripping up.
  • Work autonomously – being a team player is always an important asset, but also illustrate how you self-manage and work with limited supervision.
  • Friendly and personable – demonstrate your emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills, which enable you to work with others to achieve goals.
  • Results focus – emphasise how you contribute to results and provide precise examples of how you’ve driven progress.
  • Social media – more organisations are using social media to communicate. Describe your social media skills, including with Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and even Google+.

Read more

Salary expectations and your resume

How crystal clear is your resume writing?

Why tailored resumes are best dressed

To share this story, choose your platform.

Register today

We can help you find your perfect job

Whether it’s your first job, a new job, a career change, a promotion or re-entering the workforce after a break, we’re here. face2face will help you create a winning resume, boost your interview skills, and support you to find your perfect position.

Register today