Company Secretary Job Description
Company secretaries are a manager’s and company executive’s right hand. They are instrumental in helping the office to run smoothly, providing support to one or more managers, senior-level executives, and/or a department or division. They work in a wide range of industries, their role varying from company to company. In general, company secretaries wear the hats of receptionist, typist, file and data manager, budget, travel, and meeting coordinator, and general office clerk simultaneously. There is room for growth in this position—from entry-level secretary to executive secretary, as well as specialized secretaries such as legal and medical secretaries. If you are organized, able to multitask, and have good communication skills, this may be a fitting career for you.
Company Secretary Duties and Responsibilities
Specific job duties for company secretaries vary based on their employer. However, there are several core tasks common to all company secretaries, such as:
Company secretaries are responsible for written communication with both internal and external customers. This may require the composition of Word documents and the creation of PowerPoint presentations and Excel spreadsheets.
To help maximize their manager or department/division head’s time, company secretaries book their appointments and arrange their schedules.
Having an accurate official written record of what took place at a meeting or conference is important for future reference. In most organizations, this is the duty of the company secretary.
Compliance standards require the maintenance of certain records/files for an established timeframe. Company secretaries lead this effort by setting up, organizing, maintaining, and purging files and records.
Receive Clients and Visitors
Company secretaries help maintain order, efficiency, and professionalism by greeting and screening incoming clients and visitors, determining the reason for their visit, and directing them accordingly.
Company Secretary Skills and Qualifications
Highly organized applicants who are personable, able to work independently, and follow instructions make strong candidates for the position of company secretary. Other skills that employers seek include:
- Communication – because they will be greeting and interacting with internal and external customers in person and via phone and email, it is imperative for company secretaries to be skilled in this area
- Word processing – composing letters and memos is one of their main functions
- Problem-solving – company secretaries are expected to be able to work with little supervision, so it is important that they be able to handle situations that come up on their own, deferring only the more complex issues to the manager
- Basic accounting – to aid in their bookkeeping, budget management, and payroll duties
- Time management – to complete tasks with competing deadlines and manage multiple calendars and priorities, company secretaries must be proficient in managing their time
Education and Training
A high school diploma is sufficient for an entry-level company secretary position. Computer skills are preferred. A more advanced position may require a college certificate or diploma or an associate degree in secretarial science or office administration.
Salary and Outlook
The pay for company secretaries ranges from less than $22,930 to more than $62,230, with an average salary of $37,230 reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The highest paying industry for company secretaries is the government (average salary $41,710) and the lowest paying industry is healthcare and social assistance (average salary $34,560). They usually receive common medical/dental/vision health benefits and sick/vacation pay and may receive up to an additional $23,000 in additional pay through bonuses, commissions, and profit sharing.
The BLS growth rate projection for this career is a 7 percent decline through 2026. This holds true except for three exceptions: medical, legal, and executive secretaries. These positions will see a 22 percent increase, 17 percent decrease, and a 19 percent decrease respectively.
Company Secretary Helpful Resources
Need more information before deciding if this is the career for you? We have put together a list of resources that may aid you in your decision making:
The Definitive Personal Assistant and Secretarial Handbook: A Best Practice Guide for All Secretaries, Personal Assistants, Office Managers, and Executive Assistants – Author Sue France offers insight and advice that will help secretaries to grow in their chosen profession. This includes tips and help with time management, networking, and interpersonal skills.
Essential Skills for Administrative Support Professionals: A Practical Guide – Sorin Dumitrascu’s guide will teach the prospective secretary how to be effective and efficient in this role. Guidance on necessary skills such as communication, organizational, problem-solving, and basic office is provided as well as methods for anticipating the needs of your boss, communicating with him or her, and how to present him or her in the best light.
Association of Executive and Administrative Professionals (AEAP) – This member association helps set up administrative professionals for success. This is accomplished through the provision of professional development opportunities, a job search service, and networking via an online network directory. AEAP also offers a members-only website where members can receive discounts on a variety of products and services.
International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) – Founded in 1942 in Kansas City, Missouri, IAAP is a nonprofit organization that exists to provide a networking and educational platform for administrative professionals. This association offers continuing education to its members through training programs that can be accessed both on- and offline. Scholarships, industry events, networking opportunities, and housing assistance are a few of the other ways that IAAP aids its members in their personal and professional growth. For administrative personnel wanting to stand out in the field, the association provides the chance for certification as a certified administrative professional.
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