Find out more about the administrator job description

Administrator Job Description

Have you ever read an administrator job description? If you have, you may wonder what the difference is between administrators in different departments. We’ll take a look at what responsibilities are found in every admin job, but also how each one may differ.

We’ll cover the duties of:

  • Office Administrators
  • HR Administrators
  • Finance Administrators
  • Database Administrators

What are the Duties of an Administrator?

The duties of an administrator can cover a wide range. For example, a general office administrator is there to keep the office running smoothly by handling day-to-day operations. They ensure deadlines are met and all records are accurately maintained.

Key responsibilities can include:

  • Answering phone calls and internally transferring them
  • Filing paperwork
  • Uploading documents onto computer systems

“A general administration role is really important for any business to have. An Administrator answers incoming calls from customers, processes customer orders, inputs data onto the system, handles filing and deals with email enquiries.”

Laura Beddow, Senior Permanent Commercial Consultant

Administrators may also welcome guests and visitors into the office and direct them to the appropriate office in the case of there being no receptionist. Some office administrators may have the duty of organising office procedures and defining why it’s important for employees to perform them.

In some cases, administrators will be required to take notes in meetings with internal staff such as disciplinaries. Being able to take in a lot of information and write it down quickly is advantageous. They may also be required to organise company events and corporate functions.

What does an HR administrator do?

What are the Different Types of Admin Jobs?

There are many different types of admin jobs, including:

  • Office Administrator
  • HR Administrator
  • Finance Administrator
  • Payroll Administrator
  • Marketing Administrator
  • Systems Administrator
  • Database Administrator

All admin jobs will have the same key responsibilities, but other duties may differ depending on what sort of department they work in. For example, a Finance Administrator will be responsible for preparing and invoicing receipts, deposits, purchase orders, refunds, and other standard bookkeeping tasks. They can also be expected to prepare and submit payroll, create financial inventory reports and reconcile budgets.

On the other hand, a Marketing Administrator job may have a very different day-to-day responsibility. Including supporting the marketing manager with daily tasks, producing content for marketing campaigns, assisting the organisation with marketing support, and supporting the team with daily administrative tasks.  

What Does an HR Administrator Do?

An HR Administrator works in the Human Resources department of an organisation. Human Resources departments are generally there to oversee the recruitment, training, and on-boarding of employees. They also administer pay rises, manage employee benefit packages, and important employee events such as parental leave or bereavement.

The main duties of an HR Administrator include:

  • Being the first point of contact for all HR queries
  • Administering documents such as contracts of employment and holiday requests
  • Ensuring the HR database is accurate and up to date
  • Assist with the recruitment process and potentially liaise with recruitment agencies
  • Setting up interviews for prospective candidates

What’s the Average HR Administrator Salary?

According to a report by PayScale, the average HR Administrator salary in the UK is around £21,022. The salary can range from as low as £18,000 to as high as £27,000. The base salary is usually dependent on how much experience someone has. £18,000 per year will usually be paid to an HR administrator who has little to no experience and would be considered an entry-level role.

There’s a clear career path for HR administrators. Experience can lead to becoming an HR Manager, and potentially an HR Director of a business.

Indeed reports that the average UK salary of an HR manager is £41,454. HR Manager roles usually look for industry specific qualifications such as CIPD Level 5 Intermediate Diploma in HR management or Level 7 Advanced Diploma in HR Management. Due to needing these professional and specific qualifications, the average salary on offer is much higher than an administrator would receive.

The highest level you can reach in the human resources sector is an HR Director. To become an HR Director, the minimum requirement is typically a bachelor’s degree in HR or a related field. Along with this, a lot of experience in other HR roles is essential. The average UK salary for an HR Director is £82,748 but can range from £75,096 to £95,785 according to Reed.

What Does a Finance Administrator do?

A Finance Administrator role usually consists of updating spreadsheets, preparing budgets, keeping a record of invoices, participating in payroll processes, and reporting on financial projections. Usually they will need to report to the financial or payroll controller and will need to review and analyse trends. A Finance Administrator will need to have strong skills in Microsoft Packages, especially Excel due to working mainly with spreadsheets. 

What’s the Average Finance Administrator Salary?

Glassdoor reports that the average Finance Administrator salary in the UK is £22,435 per year. They report that the lower end of this pay scale is around £17,000. The higher end is £30,000 – dependent on experience and qualifications. An article by TotalJobs states that the average Finance Manager salary is around £38,483 but can be as high as £52,500. They also say that the average Finance Director salary is £47,500 going up to £62,500.

There is a clear path for progression by starting as a Finance Administrator. By gaining relevant experience and/or qualifications, you can eventually work in a more senior role.

What Does a Database Administrator do?

A Database Administrator will have many different daily duties in comparison to an Office Administrator. They are usually in charge of maintaining and developing company databases. Responsibilities typically include but aren’t limited to:

  • Working with database software to store, organise and manage data
  • Troubleshooting
  • Keeping databases up to date
  • Database design and development
  • Implementing security measures
  • Providing user training and support
  • Archiving data

Database administrators can be employed in various settings ranging from hospitals to financial organisations.

What’s the Average Database Administrator Salary?

According to TotalJobs, the average UK salary of a Database Administrator is around £46,250. The salary ranges from £37,500 to £57,500, which is much higher than an Office Administrator can expect to earn. This may be due to needing a qualification or degree in an IT/technology based subject.

What does a finance administrator do?

What Skills do I Need to Work in an Administrative Role?

Although there are many different types of jobs in administration, the skills they require are usually similar. Administrative skills should include being able to communicate effectively.

Administrators in all sectors will be required to have proven written and oral communication skills. This is due to often being the first point of contact between a business and its customers and needing to carry out clerical tasks. They will also need to be able to file paperwork and input data into computer systems, so an eye for detail will come in handy. Flexibility is also a key skill that employers look for.

As an Administrator, you might find that no two days are the same. So being able to jump from task to task is important.

How to Start a Career in Administration

There are many admin jobs that won’t require any experience or qualifications – these are called entry-level roles. An employer recruiting for this sort of role will look for transferable skills such as communication, organisation, and flexibility.

So, how do you get your foot in the door? You may want to start as an office assistant or receptionist to get a feel for the daily duties of an administrator. With more on-the-job experience, you can look to progress into an administrator role, either in an office or specialised department such as IT or finance.

The job description of an Administrator varies by department. By reading this article, you may have noticed that the basic responsibilities are usually very similar, whether it’s an office administrator or HR Administrator. You’ll need to be a good communicator, able to organise a variety of tasks, and be computer literate. An administrator job will open up many opportunities for you to progress into different departments and more senior roles.