Secretary  What They Do

Just the Facts


Performs routine clerical and administrative functions such as drafting correspondence, scheduling appointments, organizing and maintaining paper and electronic files, or providing information to callers.

This career is part of the Business, Management and Administration cluster Administrative Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Uses computers for various applications, such as database management or word processing.
  • Answers telephones and gives information to callers, takes messages, or transfers calls to appropriate individuals.
  • Creates, maintains, and enters information into databases.
  • Sets up and manages paper or electronic filing systems, recording information, updating paperwork, or maintaining documents, such as attendance records, correspondence, or other material.
  • Operates office equipment, such as fax machines, copiers, or phone systems and arranges for repairs when equipment malfunctions.
  • Greets visitors or callers and handles their inquiries or directs them to the appropriate persons according to their needs.
  • Maintains scheduling and event calendars.
  • Completes forms in accordance with company procedures.
  • Schedules and confirms appointments for clients, customers, or supervisors.
  • Makes copies of correspondence or other printed material.

Insider Info

Dig into the details and check out what people in this job have to say about their work.



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Secretaries, Except Legal, Medical, and Executive

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would sit most of the time. There's some walking and standing. You may have to lift and carry things like books, papers or tools weighing 10 lbs. or less.
  • Exposed to hazardous situations involving possible injury such as cuts, bites, stings, and minor burns more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves sitting more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Office Administrator -- Performs administrative and management tasks, including allocating work assignments, setting deadlines, maintaining office equipment, ordering office supplies, training employees, evaluating work performance and formulating and implementing company polici
  • Receptionist -- Greets people arriving at offices and other establishments, direct visitors to appropriate person or service, answer and forward telephone calls, take messages, schedule appointments and perform other clerical duties.