Administrative assistant is a commonly used job title in the United States. Lot of occupations can be labeled with the two words. Looking for an administrative assistant, some companies want to hire an office manager, while others look for a secretary.
One way or another, it is a popular job, and you will compete with many other job seekers.
But what to expect in an interview? What questions will they ask? What decides the winner at the end?
Simply, how to prepare for this challenging experience, and walk away with a coveted job contract? We will try to answer this question on our website, that specializes only in administrative assistant job interviews. Written by Jacob Gates & Matthew Chulaw, Professional Recruiters & Job Interview Coaches.
List of questions
Recruiters will ask you personal and behavioral questions. They may ask you couple of technical questions as well, mostly related to computing and administrative askills.
- Why do you want to become an administrative assistant?
- What do you want to accomplish on this position?
- What is the main responsibility of office assistant from your point of view?
- Why do you want to work for us, and not somewhere else?
- This job is quite repetitive. What would motivate you to do it well every day?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses?
- Do you have any experience with multitasking? How did you handle it?
- Can you work with MS Office? How would you rate your skills?
- Do you have any experience with reporting?
- Have you ever managed a small team? What challenges did you face?
- Tell me something about your experience (education)?
- What has been your biggest failure and greatest success so far?
- How fast can you type-write?
- How do you ensure to keep good qualification for this job?
- What do you think will be your daily job here?
- What do you think about the working environment in our company?
- When are you able to start?
- Why should we hire you?
- Do you have any questions?
Everybody can talk about doing a job, but it doesn’t guarantee they can actually handle it.
Interviewers may ask you retype something in MS Word, or do something with MS Excel (or other office software popular in your country). It helps them to see whether you can work with the program , how fast do you typewrite, what is your methodology of work, etc.
IQ test and personality test
You can deal with IQ tests and personality tests, especially if you are interviewed in a recruitment agency (that outsources the hiring process for the employer). When hiring administrative assistants, interviewers look for an IQ score between 90 and 115. If you score more points, they may consider you too clever for an administrative job (you would get easily bored doing repetitive work), and they will screen you out. We suggest you to try some free IQ tests prior to your interview, to see how you fare.
They may also give you a personality test, but in this case, there’s not much you can do in advance. Just follow your gut instinct and answer the test questions honestly.
Personal preferences can play an important role in an interview, especially if you apply for a job in a smaller company.
If they feel good with you,if they can imagine sitting next to you in an office on a daily basis, they will prioritize you to other candidates.
But how to make them feeling good while they interview you? It’s more an art than a science. Try to show humility and respect in your interview. Compliment your interviewers, if there’s something you can compliment them for. Be positive about yourself, the job offer, the future. Try to be a person it is a pleasure talking to.
Going an extra step
If you want to have an unfair advantage in your interview, you may consider checking our Administrative Assistant Interview Package. Brilliant answers to 15 most common interview questions (why should we hire you, what are your weaknesses, what motivates you, why do you want to leave your present job, etc.), and winning interview strategies will show you how to outclass your competitors, impress the interviewers, and get a job. Thank you for checking it out here.
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