Secretary Resume Guide + Tips + Example
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Secretaries provide administrative support to businesses and other organizations. In their roles, they handle a variety of tasks such as answering phones, filing paperwork, scheduling meetings and sending emails. They also act as a liaison between the company and outside organizations, such as clients, vendors and suppliers.
You need a stand-out resume to get the job you want. Not sure where to begin? You’re in the right place. Our guide to how to write a resume for a secretary job will help you make the most of your attention to detail and interpersonal skills so you can get the job.
Start by editing this secretary resume template or explore more resume templates to find the best one for you. Review secretary resume samples to see the best way to add them to a secretary resume.
Secretary resume example (text version)
Washington, DC 20016
Hardworking and focused secretary offering excellent communication, planning and prioritization skills demonstrated through 10 years of performance. Skilled at drafting reports and business correspondence, managing mail and updating tracking spreadsheets. Exceptional leadership skills with expertise in streamlining workflow to optimize personnel strengths.
January 2018 – Current
Addison Group – Washington,DC
- Schedule appointments, respond to emails and write and proofread letters, memorandums and other business correspondence for a team of 10.
- Maintain fully functional office equipment and well-organized office supplies inventory.
- Update and improve online databases of client accounts and external vendors, including updating information when necessary, increasing productivity by 55%.
October 2013 – December 2017
Russell Tobin & Associates – Washington, DC
- Greeted an average of 60 incoming visitors and customers per day professionally and provided friendly, knowledgeable assistance.
- Confirmed appointments, communicated with clients and updated client records.
- Answered multiline phone system by the third ring and transferred callers to the appropriate staff member.
June 2013 – September 2013
AARP – Washington, DC
- Completed clerical tasks such as filing, copying and distributing mail.
- Organized envelopes, postage and mail correspondence for a staff of 50 and a management group of 13, maintaining postage meters and coordinating with delivery and courier services.
- Restocked office supplies and retrieved files for staff.
- Documentation and reporting
- Verbal and written communication
- Computer literacy
- Time management
- Transcription and dictation
- Attention to detail
- Organization skills
June 2019May 2020
Howard University Washington,DC
BBA Business Management
Certified Administrative Professional – (2021)
5 essential sections for a top secretary resume
Like our secretary sample resume shows, your contact information must always be at the top of your resume. Display your contact information like this: Your full name followed by your city, state and ZIP code, then your phone number and professional email address. Add your LinkedIn profile and professional website links (if you have them) last.
Get inspired to craft a great resume with our collection of professionally-crafted resume examples. You will find resume examples for a secretary position matching your needs.
A professional summary, also called a personal statement, is where you introduce yourself to the hiring manager and showcase your top skills and most relevant work experience. A summary for a secretary resume must include one or two of your most notable professional accomplishments, key skills for the job, and a touch of your experience in the field. Make your personal statement compelling but short — no longer than five brief sentences. Our resume example for a secretary displays a perfect professional summary.
Here’s a good example of a secretary resume summary:
“Highly organized and efficient secretary with over eight years of experience providing administrative support to executives in a fast-paced office environment. Proven ability to manage multiple tasks simultaneously, prioritize work according to urgency and accurately maintain confidential records. Skilled in utilizing office technology to streamline operations and improve productivity. “
Potential employers want to know your skills upfront. Create a separate section for your top skills and format them with bullet points to make them easy to read. Secretaries must have excellent organizational skills, as well as an ability to multitask. They must also be detail-oriented, have excellent communication and interpersonal skills and be able to work independently.
Your resume must include a detailed employment history section, even if you apply for your first job. In this section, list current and previous employers in reverse-chronological order. Display company names, locations and the dates you worked for each. Include three bullet points of measurable achievements for every job you have worked.
- Managed the day-to-day operations of a busy, 100-person office, including scheduling appointments, responding to customer inquiries and maintaining office supplies.
- Developed and implemented efficient filing systems for hard copy and digital documents, resulting in a 35% improvement in customer satisfaction.
- Assisted in the preparation of presentations and other materials for 50 meetings and 10 events per month.
A resume for a secretary job application must include an education section. This section must include all the educational institutions you’ve attended after high school. Format it with bullet points and show the name of the school, its location and the year you graduated if it was less than 10 years ago. If you did not attend college, display your high school information and any post-high school classes you’ve taken.
There are no specific education requirements for a secretary job, but it’s a good idea to have at least a high school diploma.
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Do’s and don’ts for building a secretary resume
- Use measurable achievements to describe your secretary abilities and experience.
- Use action words like “maintain,””answer” and “prepare.” to impact your resume for a secretary job.
- Tailor your resume to your target secretary job.
- Use keywords from the job description throughout your secretary resume.
- Format your secretary resume so that it is easy to read by ATS software and human eyes.
- Lie about your secretary experience and skills.
- Boast that you’re the “best secretary ever.” Instead, highlight specific achievements like “Increased office efficiency by introducing a filing system that reduced the time spent on filing documents by 25%.”
- Include irrelevant personal information such as your ethnicity and age.
- Add skills and experience not pertaining to secretary work.
- Forget to proofread. A secretary resume with errors is unprofessional.
Top 4 tips for acing a secretary interview
Research the company.
To make a great first impression, learn about the company’s history, goals, values and people before your first interview. Showing you know about the company and its culture conveys real interest, dedication and commitment, which hiring managers look for.
Specific things to look for include:
- Office culture and expectations for secretaries.
- Typical duties and responsibilities of a secretary.
- Stakeholders you might be working with.
Practice makes perfect!
To practice for your interview, start by reviewing the most common interview questions, such as:
- Why did you choose this career?
- What do you see yourself doing in 10 years?
- What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made?
Research possible secretary job-related questions like
- How would you handle a situation where you have to be available to multiple people at the same time?
- What do you consider to be the most important qualities for a successful secretary?
- How would you handle a situation where a task needs to be completed quickly, but there are many other tasks that need to be done at the same time?
- What methods do you use to stay organized and keep track of tasks?
- How do you handle a situation where you are given conflicting instructions by different people?
- How do you handle stressful situations in the office?
- Are you comfortable working with confidential information?
And some behavioral interview questions include:
- Describe a time when you were under a heavy workload. How did you handle it?
- Describe a time when you used written communication to make a point.
- Give me an example of how you juggle multiple priorities.
Write down one or two good possible answers as you review potential questions, then ask a friend or relative to perform a mock interview with you so you can get comfortable with the questions and keep the answers in mind. Ask your interview partner for a review and work on improving your weaknesses. You’ll feel confident and ready when it’s time for the real thing.
It’s highly likely that your interviewer will ask if you have any questions at the end of your session — and they will expect you to have at least two or three questions for them. Job candidates who don’t ask questions are not as likely to get hired because hiring managers assume they aren’t interested in the role or won’t put much thought into the work.
Some questions you might ask for a secretary job are:
- What types of office management duties and responsibilities are expected of the successful secretarial candidate?
- What software programs and systems are used in the office?
- What are the general office procedures and protocols?
- What kind of support systems are in place to help me succeed?
- What is the typical schedule for a secretary?
Have professional references ready in case the hiring manager wants to hire you. Prepare a list of two former (or current) colleagues and a former manager who can speak to your qualifications as a secretary and who you know will give you an outstanding review. Take it one step further and ask them for a letter of recommendation.
If you are applying for your first full-time job, ask a former teacher, volunteer coordinator, classmate or community leader who can vouch for your character and skills.
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