Office administration includes planning work assignments for staff, supervising staff, and requesting new office equipment and repairs on existing equipment. There are a number of descriptions of the administrative function but quite often it is the oil that keeps a business ticking over efficiently. Without a workable administrative system amazing things can happen in a business.
Recently I heard of a new accountant rummaging around in his new role to discover a shoe box of pre Euro European currency notes totaling £300 in value but no longer legal tender. Another story was about the directors' 288 returns (8 of them) sitting neatly in a file - but not sent into Companies House over the past two years.
Some of the usual problems have to do with lost papers, lost vat returns, Inland Revenue dates missed and general muddle. What is worse is to discover that work has not been invoiced or records about jobs are lost or inaccurate.
The essential skills of that administrative support person is an ability to multi task, to keep records straight, to be able to find essential bits of paper immediately and to keep the MD informed of any potential untoward happening while allowing him to get on with the essential business of the organisation. There are a number of areas that loosely fit under administration, especially in a small company. Insurances. Most companies will have office and contents insurance, employer and public liability insurance. There are also special insurance policies to cover company cars, professional indemnity insurance and other key man insurance policies.
Pensions. All companies where there are more that 7 employees should be offering a pension to employees. These are usually Stakeholder pensions and can include pension contributions by the company to employee's pension plans. Pension control sits loosely between the HR function, the payroll and the accountant - but whoever looks after the pension, the detail is important.
Health and Safety. Any company with over 6 employees should have a health and safety policy in place, and this includes having first aid available for employees. Facilities Administration. In small companies, to have an inhouse IT support function is not usually one of the priorities, although it is essential for the smooth and efficient working of the office and someone will need to attend to computers, e-mail problems, printer malfunction and the like. Similarly the functioning of the telephones, alarms and security all fall under administration. Likewise, the ordering of essential supplies is vital to the efficiency of the business.
Accounting. A number of small companies will outsource the accounting function but even when this happens there are finance related functions in the office which need to controlled. One of the essentials is to have an easily visible record of cash in and cash out so that there is an at a glance view of current liquidity. Excel is a flexible vehicle for having these controls in place and easily managed. But some accounting software is very reasonably priced and user friendly and worthwhile investing in while the business is young.
Payroll. Payroll has become a complicated business. The Inland Revenue regularly introduces new legislation which no doubt helps the employees but complicates the payroll process month by month. Most companies will outsource the payroll function but if it is kept in house it needs to be run by a competent trained person using software that is compliant with the Inland Revenue criteria.
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Behind the scenes work at offices, corporations, and businesses is not a short list of tasks. Office Administration professionals conquer multiple tasks daily that provide a base for companies across a wide range of industries to succeed. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that employers of office administrators are now progressively seeking candidates who possess a college degree.
Today, degrees in office administration are widely available from a number of online schools and colleges. Students enrolled in courses or programs will learn what it takes to be an office administrator. Day-to-day activities learned will relate to financial planning, billing, and record keeping. The job focuses on these aspects through a range of work that includes supervising staff, preparing work assignments, requesting office equipment, and more.
Online office administration certified programs can leave an individual with an associate's degree. A student can further their education in office administration by ultimately obtaining a master's degree. Length of study will greatly depend on what degree distinction an individual wants to obtain. Courses taken will fall under categories like communication skills, document formatting, keyboarding, business communications, and more. For example, a business class will teach a student concise and effective communication. The course will teach the essential knowledge of how to produce and edit business documents by preparing students with language fundamentals as they relate to business correspondence. Course prices vary from school to school. Some online schools have students paying just for the course, while others may require students to pay a tuition fee as part of the course price. A student enrolled in a program for a set degree rather than separate classes will pay more, but the result will be a higher level of education and a higher success rate when applying for jobs.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that individuals who want to work as an office manager or executive secretary must first obtain a bachelor's degree in office administration. People in this job description have reportedly made an average annual income of $41,000. With a degree office administrators will be eligible to work in various sectors of the economy. These areas include education, government, health care administration, and more. Degree holding professionals are sought after by non-profit organizations, major corporations, small businesses, and agencies.
Before signing up for any online classes or programs check the accreditation of the school. This step will ensure that a student is obtaining a legitimate degree and not wasting time and money on an education that may not be recognized by future employers. Take advantage of the options available through online schooling and enroll in a program today.