How Interchangeable Are Job Titles?


This posting is a guest entry from the Career Doctor, Randall S. Hansen, PhD: Ruth writes: I’m seeking an administrative assistant position and I’m confused as to whether my current job title falls into the category. My current position is operations coordinator, which focuses in the area of fleet services, warehousing and other duties. I possess the skills of the administrative assistant, but wasn’t quite sure if these two titles could be interchangeable. Thanks for your help.
The Career Doctor responds: I think job-seekers sometimes get too carried away with job titles. It really doesn’t matter what your current job title is — as long as you have the skills necessary to succeed in the job you are seeking, in this case, as an administrative assistant. Employers do look at your past job titles, but what counts is not the title, but the experience and the accomplishments. My advice is for you to get the job listings/descriptions of administrative assistants from a couple of different employers. Examine the qualifications they seek from prospective employees and be sure your background, accomplishments, and skills are a good fit. Next, develop a solid cover letter and reputation that showcase the unique set of skills, accomplishments, and experiences that make you an ideal administrative assistant. Then, when applying for these jobs, be sure to speak to the specific requirements of each employer, showing how you meet or exceed each requirement. You should be well on your way to an administrative assistant position.