Resume Template: Office Assistant

by | Resume Templates, Resume Templates: Administration

0You’re ready for your next work opportunity. You’ve found the perfect job posting. Now it’s time to get all of your materials in order.

You may be well-suited for a position with the right certifications and qualifications, but so will many of the other applicants.

How can you make sure your information rises above the rest?

A well-written resume can help you stand out, land more interviews and ultimately secure your position as the best possible candidate.

As an office assistant, there are probably many different aspects of your job — and it might change on a day-to-day basis. While it’s a great thing that you have a variety of skills to get it all done, you may find it difficult to put it all down on paper.

We’re going to give you all the tools you need to write a great office assistant resume.

Summary

  1. Resume Template
  2. Formatting
  3. Writing Your Resume Summary
  4. Areas of Expertise
  5. Writing Your Work Experience
  6. Writing Your Education Section
  7. Additional Sections
  8. Resume Points to Remember
  9. Resume “Don’ts” to Remember
  10. Some Helpful Tools

Let’s begin with a sample office assistant resume to demonstrate how all the resume pieces fit together. Then we will break each section down to really drill into how to write the best office assistant resume you possibly can.

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Office Assistant Resume (Text Version)

Contact Info:

Edward McLaughlin
EMcLaughlin@email.com
1 (503) 555-5500
Beaverton, OR 97005

Summary Statement:

Office Assistant: Highly organized multitasker with experience in the medical and construction fields. Thrives in a fast-paced environment and excels at taking initiative and finding opportunities to help the company grow. Excellent written and verbal communication skills utilized in accurate digital communication, filing, scheduling, and social media engagement.

Key Accomplishments/Areas of Expertise

  • Microsoft Office Suite
  • Quick Learner
  • Proactive
  • Organized
  • Attention to Detail
  • Data Management
  • Invoicing
  • Social Media Engagement

Professional Experience:

Aeroform
Portland, OR | Office Assistant | Oct 2016–Present

  • Create customer invoices and mail or email as required
  • Manage customer requirements with shipping department
  • Provide purchasing for the company and writing quotes for clients
  • General clerical duties including emailing, photocopying, scanning, and filing

Davis Construction
Gresham, OR | Office Assistant | June 2014–Sept 2016

  • Made outbound calls to prospective clients
  • Generated new business through social media
  • Managed online discussion by responding to users in a timely and authentic manner
  • Handled special projects as directed

Cascade Laser Clinic
Portland, OR | Office Assistant | July 2011–June 2014

  • Supplied general office administration support and assisted on projects
  • Tracked business development and created detailed reports
  • Maintained office equipment and supplies

Education/Certifications

Associate Degree | Business Concentration
Portland Community College | Portland, OR
Class of 2011

Office Assistant Resume Formatting

Office assistants are known for their attention to detail and top-notch organizational skills.

Those qualities are sure to come in handy when it comes to resume writing. Proper formatting is one of the biggest resumes between stellar resumes and not-so-stellar resumes.

Since the average hiring manager only looks at each resume for about six seconds, if you want to grab their attention, your most important information needs to be seen right away.

That’s why you’re going to put your experiences in reverse chronological order, listing your most recent, relevant information first and going backwards through your previous jobs.

Most importantly, your office assistant resume needs to be readable and easily understood. Choose a sensible font like Times New Roman or Arial. Use a simple format — something unique or unusual not make you stand out in a good way.

Make sure you include whitespace to guide the eye and avoid big blocks of text. Always double-check for typos and spelling errors, aligned margins, and that you include all your necessary information, such as contact details.

Writing Your Resume Summary

Remember that you only have about six seconds to make an impression, so it’s crucial that you grab the hiring manager’s attention right away.

The best way to do this is to include a resume summary at the top of the page.

In a short paragraph, about two to three sentences, list your top attributes, skills, and experiences that you think are the most relevant to the position you are applying for.

Be as specific as possible when describing your top selling points. Try not to use language that is too general and avoid repeating yourself.

Here’s an example of what that looks like:

Yes!

Highly organized multitasker with experience in the medical and construction fields. Thrives in a fast-paced environment and excels at taking initiative and finding opportunities to help the company grow. Excellent written and verbal communication skills utilized in accurate digital communication, filing, scheduling, and social media engagement.

No!

I am an experienced, organized office assistant seeking further opportunities. Very experienced, organized, and reliable.

What makes these two examples different?

Let’s start with the first summary. This example is descriptive, informative, and specific. It tells us what you did during your time in this role, the skills you learned during this experience, and your positive attributes.

The second summary is much more general. It uses the first person, which is generally not recommended for resumes, and the language is repetitive. This example doesn’t really share what makes you a good candidate.

Areas of Expertise/Key Accomplishments

You’re going to follow your office assistant resume summary with a list of your key accomplishments.

Because the summary is in paragraph format, this section is going to be in a bulleted list. That way, a busy hiring manager can quickly scan your qualifications and see if you are a good enough fit for them to keep reading.

Here is where you list the skills that set you apart from the pack.

Do you have knowledge of any particular software programs or have any team building experiences?

PRO TIP: In the job posting, it should list if the employer is looking for any skills in particular. If those are skills you have, be sure to include them here.

Example:

  • Microsoft Office Suite
  • Quick Learner
  • Proactive
  • Organized
  • Attention to Detail
  • Data Management
  • Invoicing
  • Social Media Engagement

When crafting your skills list, think about your attributes in two categories: hard skills and soft skills in this list.

Do you know the difference?

Hard skills are quantifiable, technical skills that you can learn and get better at with practice. This category includes things like data entry or knowing how to use a particular kind of technology.

Soft skills are more subjective and generally cannot be taught. You’ve probably heard of this category as something called “people skills,” which includes things like leadership, reliability, and communication.

(See below for a helpful table of some suggested hard and soft skill ideas for office assistants to get you started.)

Work Experience

At this point, you’ve grabbed the hiring manager’s attention, so it’s time to convince them that you are the perfect candidate.

The bulk of your resume should be in the form of your work history. This is where you share how the experiences you’ve had will lead you to succeed in your next role.

Here’s where reverse chronological order comes into play. With few exceptions, your most recent job is probably the most relevant and impressive, so start with that role and work your way backward.

When describing each experience, be specific. Don’t just describe the things you did — be sure you also talk about the impact you had during your time in that position. Three to five bullets for each role will be enough to keep it informative, but also brief.

Because you don’t have a lot of space, it’s important to use strong language here. Start each bullet off with an action word. This will help highlight your achievements.

Let’s look at an example:

Yes!

Aeroform | Portland, OR | Office Assistant | Oct 2016–Present

  • Create customer invoices and mail or email as required
  • Manage customer requirements with shipping department
  • Provide purchasing for the company and writing quotes for clients
  • General clerical duties including emailing, photocopying, scanning, and filing

No!

Aeroform | Portland, OR | Office Assistant | Oct 2016–Present

  • Assist the executive team
  • Perform general clerical duties
  • Send emails

The first example is informative and inspires confidence in your abilities. Each bullet is unique and starts off with an action word that shares what you accomplished in this position.

The second description is much more general. It outlines some of the basic duties of an office assistant but doesn’t really say anything else. It is not memorable and doesn’t share anything about you.

PRO TIP: Don’t make your job sound easier than it is! Really think about the impact you had during your time at each organization. If there is any quantifiable information like sales numbers or traffic increases, you should include it here.

What Are Bots?

Sometimes, the busy hiring manager isn’t the only one who will be reading your resume. Sometimes, a software program will read it, too.

Because employers will get so many applications for a position, they can’t read all of the materials from every single applicant. That’s why they use software called Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).

ATS will scan resumes for keywords, usually from the job description, and pull the ones that include those words. Those are the resumes that the hiring manager will actually look at in order to potentially ask the candidate in for an interview.

This means that it is absolutely crucial to read the job description. You can be totally qualified for a job, but if you don’t use certain keywords, the ATS won’t flag your resume and your materials will get tossed to the side.

Be sure to use the exact phrasing that is in the job posting, not synonyms. For example, if the listing says, “Proficiency in Google Calendars” and you write “Experience with the G-Suite,” the program will not flag you as a good candidate.

PRO TIP: Print out the job listing and highlight important keywords. Studies show that people read digital paragraphs faster, but absorb fewer details.

To try to impress potential ATS, some candidates will write the descriptions of their work experiences in paragraph format, instead of in bullet points. While there’s a chance this method will fit in more keywords, it also creates a big block of text.

Let’s look at both formats:

Bullet list:

Aeroform | Portland, OR | Office Assistant | Oct 2016–Present

  • Create customer invoices and mail or email as required
  • Manage customer requirements with shipping department
  • Provide purchasing for the company and writing quotes for clients
  • General clerical duties including emailing, photocopying, scanning, and filing

Paragraph Format:

Aeroform | Portland, OR | Office Assistant | Oct 2016–Present
Create customer invoices and mail or email as required. Manage customer requirements with shipping department. Provide purchasing for the company and writing quotes for clients. General clerical duties including emailing, photocopying, scanning, and filing.

While both examples here use the same number of keywords, the bulleted list is more scannable and easier to read. The second example may be keyword-rich, but you are assuming that the hiring team will read the entire paragraph to learn more about you.

Both examples will impress ATS, but only the first example will interest a busy hiring manager.

That’s why at Big Interview, we recommend using the bulleted list format.

The Education Section

With the biggest chunk of your office assistant resume over with, it’s time to move on to the education section.

Similar to your work history, you’re going to use reverse chronological order again. Start with your highest, most impressive degree, and work your way backward. For example, you would put a bachelor’s degree before a high school diploma.

List the type of degree and field of study, plus where you studied and when you graduated.

If you graduated recently, you may want to list your GPA. This is because your education section is more important to your resume at this point, but as you gain more work experience, it will become less so.

Example:

Associate Degree | Business Concentration
Portland Community College | Portland, OR
Class of 2011

If you have any relevant online coursework or certifications, those can also go in your education section.

Example:

  • “Introduction to Data Management,” Portland Community College, Portland, OR
  • “Social Media Techniques,” Online Course, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR

Other Sections

If you find that you have some extra space on your resume and/or other areas of interest that don’t necessarily fit into the other categories, you can consider adding more sections.

Some of the sections you could include are:

  • Awards and honors
  • Publications
  • Noteworthy Projects
  • Social Media Influence
  • Speaking Engagements
  • Hobbies/Interests
  • Volunteer Work

What if You Have No Experience?

If you’re a recent graduate or are making a career change, you might think that you have no experience that’s relevant to the job you want.

It’s totally fine to apply for a position when you have no experience, but there are a couple of things you should do a little bit differently.

First off, start with a resume summary. But instead of following it with your work history, move up your education section to come next.

There are still ways to show your knowledge of the industry — it just might not be from paid roles.

You probably have more experience than you realize. Think about internships you’ve done, courses you’ve taken, or certifications you’ve earned. Don’t forget about summer jobs or volunteer work that might be relevant.

PRO TIP: Soft skills can come in handy here. Being a good office assistant requires many different soft skills, so think about the experiences you’ve had that highlight the attributes that would make you a good office assistant.

Resume Points to Remember

Get a proofreader

Your office assistant resume may seem perfect to you, but get a friend with fresh eyes to take a look. They might catch something you missed like typos and spelling errors.

Keep it to one page

With very few exceptions, your resume should stick to one page. Don’t feel like you need to include every single job you’ve ever had, just the ones that are the most relevant to the job you’re applying for.

Simple is best

When in doubt, keep it simple in terms of fonts, formatting, and layout. Being “fun” with any of these categories is risky and will likely not work out in your favor.

Resume “Don’ts” to Remember

Don’t use personal pronouns

While it might seem odd to not use “I” or “me” while talking about yourself, don’t use personal pronouns. The first person will stand out to a hiring team — and not in a good way.

Don’t be text-heavy

Remember to utilize white space to guide the eye. A busy hiring manager might not take the time to read big blocks of text. Be sure to use bulleted lists and include space between paragraphs to keep things neat and tidy.

Don’t forget the basics

It may seem silly, but don’t forget your contact information. When you’re so focused on crafting the perfect descriptions of your positions, it can be surprisingly easy to forget to list your email address or LinkedIn profile.

(Below is a helpful table of power words to use to inspire your office assistant resume.)

 

Helpful Tools

Office Assistant Power Words

  • Created
  • Maintained
  • Assisted
  • Coordinated
  • Provided
  • Established
  • Managed
  • Checked
  • Handled
  • Systemized
  • Generated
  • Forumulated
  • Supplied
  • Planned
  • Tracked
  • Arranged

Office Assistant Resume Skills List

Hard SkillsSoft Skills
Microsoft Office SuiteQuick Learner
Data ManagementProactive
InvoicingOrganized
Social Media EngagementDetail-oriented
Google CalendarsSelf-motivated

Further Resources:

We have many great resources available to you 100% free on the Big Interview blog. Read the articles below for more information on resumes and cover letters.

The Art of Writing a Great Resume Summary Statement

How Long Should a Resume Be?

Creating Really Good Resumes

How to Get the Applicant Tracking System to Pick Your Resume

8 Design Ideas to Make Your Resume Pop

6 Tricks to Makeover Your Resume…Fast

How to Write a Cover Letter