While an office administration job can make an excellent entry route for a new career, administrators often wonder what progression routes are available to them.

Unfortunately, office-based roles are not as clear-cut as other careers, but they do follow a logical path that leads towards far higher positions. In order to get there however, candidates will need to come equipped with various qualifications and experiences: many of which are directly available through the entry-level administration position itself.


One of the most logical solutions to career progression is by accepting an administrative role in a more specialised department. General office administrators may choose to become medical administrators or legal administrators, which work in high-tier professional environments and can eventually progress into personal assistant roles for company executives or other senior management positions.

Office administrators also often have incredible scope when it comes to internal vacancies within various companies. Administrators can choose to follow vacancies when they believe it matches any previous experience or qualifications they might otherwise hold, with sales and marketing being two very popular choices. Similarly, administrators with proven foreign language abilities may choose to become bilingual secretaries within companies that offer these sorts of services to the general public. These positions are becoming increasingly common in today's multicultural and well-linked world, so are well worth considering when thinking about additional qualifications for career progression.

skills to help you succeed in administration.

soft skills

Office administrators will also need to enhance their soft skills when working on their career progression. Administrators tend to be the face of many companies, so this position will automatically afford them with abilities to enhance their customer service and communication skills at most times throughout their working day. It is important for administration workers to pay particular attention to any times they have given exceptional service or went above and beyond the call of duty. These instances and stories will always prove themselves to be useful when around the negotiation table.

It is also possible to demonstrate a commitment to high standards of communication and other soft skills by joining a professional body, such as the Institute of Professional Administrators. Affiliation with these groups will show prospective employers that candidates are indeed serious about their roles and aim to become versatile, well-rounded workers.

technical qualifications

Much of today's administration is computed, so candidates who possess the necessary IT qualifications will be one step ahead at the negotiation table. This is especially true of Microsoft's Office package, which undergoes regular upgrades and redevelopments and requires workers to remain proficient with the software's increasing capabilities. The Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) qualification is the most recognised qualification for demonstrating this skill and is a twelve-month part time course that can be completed online.

It is also wise to consider office specific qualifications, like the BTEC Vocational Skills qualification in Office Administration (Level 1) or a more advanced business administration qualification should candidates be interested in specialising from an early point in their careers.

You may benefit from reading even more about how to stand out in an administrator role.