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Sales Administrative Assistant: Job Description and Requirements

A sales administrative assistant works with sales department management to provide office support to field representatives. These positions require candidates to possess a strong knowledge of technology and office operations, as well as vocational training or a degree in business.

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Sales Administrative Assistant Job Description

A sales administrative assistant provides clerical and minor technical support for the sales department of a company or major organization. Recordkeeping responsibilities may include sales and expense reports, electronic databases and sales proposals for prospective customers. Administrative assistants also plan meetings and ensure that sales representatives in the field are in contact with home office staff. Most sales administrative assistants work a full-time 40-hour week and report directly to the management of the sales department, though they work independently with minimal oversight. Sales administrative assistants may advance through promotion to other positions with increased responsibility within the company.

Requirements for Sales Administrative Assistants

Although a high school diploma may be sufficient for an entry-level administrative assistant position, more employment options may be open to those who complete a 1-2 year vocational education program covering basic office skills. Vocational schools and community colleges offer certificate and diploma programs in administrative support and office management, which include coursework in interpersonal communication, word processing and business writing, in addition to software applications for databases, spreadsheets and desktop publishing.

Employers that give more complex or managerial responsibilities to sales administrative assistance may look for applicants who have completed an accredited 4-year degree program in either business studies or a field related to the company's industry. A sales administrative assistant may also take the International Association of Administrative Professionals' exam to become a Certified Administrative Professional (CAP).

While an administrative assistant diploma or business degree provides basic training, sales administrative assistants obtain most of their training and advanced skills on the job, through working with other employees and equipment and software vendors. Workshops and online continuing education programs cover new office technology and software, including information storage systems, hardware and software packages that increase business operation efficiency. Experience in customer service is beneficial, along with having sound judgment, discretion and the initiative to drive organizational processes.

Career Info

Secretaries and administrative assistants can expect to see a 12% increase in job opportunities from 2010-2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). They earned an average annual wage of $33,560 in May 2012 (www.bls.gov).

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