Sample Administrative Assistant Resume Break Down for Review
January 17 • 5 min read
A well-written resume can significantly increase not only the number of job offers you receive but also your salary offer. It will ensure you catch a recruiter’s eye, secure you more invites to interview and help set you up for interview success. In turn, you’ll find yourself well-positioned to negotiate for a higher starting salary or choose the ideal company out of multiple offers.
Administrative assistant responsibilities and salary offers can vary drastically, so it’s particularly important to leverage your resume if you want to apply for the more competitive roles.
Keep reading as we explore the dos and don’ts of writing a strong resume. We’ll also break down an example resume so you have a model to base yours on.
Before you click send on your resume, make sure you can check off all these resume must-dos:
- Is there plenty of white space?
- Do you use bullet points rather than paragraphs?
- Is it concisely written?
- Have you deleted any job descriptions that don’t add value?
- Have you deleted the unnecessary sections
- References and Hobbies?
- Is your resume two pages or shorter?
- Do you use keywords from the job listing? (Here’s why that’s important.)
- Is it in a machine-readable format, i.e. .docx or .pdf?
- Have you saved the file as “Your Name Resume?”
Let’s explore the resume of a fictional administrative assistant, Anna Sistant, and why it works well. We’ll break it down section by section.
You don’t need to title your resume “Resume.” You can use your name instead, followed by your contact details. For example:
AnnaSistant@gmail.com | (012)345-6789 | LinkedIn.com/AnnaSistant
In her resume, Anna has included a professional email address, her phone number and her LinkedIn handle. Hopefully, her LinkedIn is completely filled out and contains references or recent, relevant posts.
If Anna were applying for administrative assistant roles in a specific niche, she could also include more social media links or even a portfolio website. For example, for a company specializing in video editing, she could add the urls of her YouTube, Vimeo or TikTok accounts — but only if she had good content on them.
Assuming she’s applying for roles in the US, she shouldn’t include a photo, date of birth, age, ethnicity, race or anything else that could be used to discriminate against her. However, if relevant for the role, she could include her home address.
The professional summary is your chance to tell potential employers who you are and why you’re the ideal candidate in two to five sentences. Let’s look at Anna’s professional summary:
Professional Summary Organized and detail-oriented administrative assistant with 7+ years of experience. Possesses excellent people skills and computer literacy. Experienced with invoicing, reports and events management.
Anna has filled her professional summary with a mixture of hard and soft skills while focusing on her professional experiences. Hopefully, she’s used the exact same phrasing as the job listing so that any computer system (or rushed human recruiter) scanning her resume will find them.
She’s also kept her professional summary concise. Instead of using grammatically complete sentences, she has skipped the subject and sometimes the verb to begin with more important words.
The skills section is the place to highlight relevant skills for the job that could otherwise be buried in your career history. Let’s look at how Anna’s done it:
- Proficient with QuickBooks and Excel
- Trilingual: English (native), Mandarin Chinese (native), Spanish (CEFR C1)
- Events management and budgeting
- Excellent organization; oversaw schedules and invoices for team of 22 people
- Communication skills; 3 years’ experience of phoning clients to organize meetings and events
- People skills
This skills section is concise, with seven bullet points. Ideally, you’ll include no more than eight skills for an administrative assistant role.
Anna has also backed up many of her skills with evidence, from language certifications to past experiences. Again, she’s probably used the exact phrasing as the job listing to make sure her application gets past an applicant tracking system.
Your work history section doesn’t have to include every job you’ve ever worked, but it should include your recent jobs as well as your most relevant ones. Here are a couple of Anna’s job descriptions from this section:
Magic Marketing Consultants Events Administrative Assistant, January 2019 – present
- Coordinated events with 500+ attendees and a per-event budget of up to $125,000
- Implemented new filing system leading to an 18% increase in efficiency
- Oversaw invoicing and reporting using QuickBooks, Excel and in-house software
- Trained junior administrative assistants
XYZ LLC Junior Administrative Assistant, June 2015 – July 2016
Anna’s made sure to include the company name, her job title and the start and finish date of her past roles.
In her current role, she’s added lots of concisely written bullet points describing her responsibilities and achievements. She’s backed them up with impressive, quantitative metrics and also used important keywords such as program names and key tasks. Each one of her bullet points starts with a power verb.
However, for her role as Junior Administrative Assistant, Anna hasn’t actually included any responsibilities or achievements. This job was from a long time ago, and she didn’t have an important role, so she’s decided to save space. In fact, she probably only included it to show that she has administrative assistant experience dating back to 2015.
Anna’s already got lots of work experience, so her education section is the last thing on her resume. However, if you’re a new graduate or pivoting careers, you might want to move this up above your Work History section.
Here’s what Anna’s written:
Education & Certification
- Events Management and Budgeting Online Course (50 hours), 2019 Events Academy
- Advanced Excel Online Course (30 hours), 2016 Excel Academy
- Administrative Assistant Certificate, 2015 Triton College
Anna doesn’t have a college degree, but she has taken plenty of courses relevant to her career. She’s included the name of the institution and the year she finished them, as well as the course title. You’ll notice they’re in chronological order, too, with the most recent certification first.
If you want to include a college degree on your resume, check out our guide to knowing when to mention your GPA and how to format it.
Writing a winning resume doesn’t have to be hard work. With the right tools, you can say goodbye to double-checking font sizes or worrying over whether your file format will pass muster with applicant tracking systems.
Our administrative assistant resume templates are professionally laid out, machine-readable and easy to customize. Plus, our resume builder will walk you through tailoring them to your background. It will suggest the best structure based on your experience level, as well as recommend recruiter-approved phrasing for your skill sets.
You can craft an excellent resume in minutes with our tools, so get started now.