Sample Resume for Secretary

For the Manager, director, or the CEO, you will be the right hand, managing all the administrative tasks. For the company, you will be the backbone, allowing the organization to take maximum utilization of executive time for strategic decision making. You should be an energetic, active, and highly influential character to become a secretary for an important executive.

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If you want to further your career, you need more than that. First thing you need is to create a perfect resume for secretary positions that showcases your skills, expertise as well as your personality.

We are going to give away our time-tested tips and techniques to create your next secretary resume sample that can help you land your dream secretary job interview.

More interviews mean more chances of getting your job. Let’s go 

Additional Information About The Secretary Resume

The average annual pay for a Secretary position is $34,000 💰 (Payscale.com)

However, most organizations are paying higher salaries for the secretaries of the important executives. In fact, you could demand higher salaries based on your expertise and skill level.

The good news is, there are more than 4 million secretaries in the USA by 2020. Every organization needs a couple of secretaries regardless of the industry or the size.

Because of the following two reasons, there’s a higher demand for secretary positions:

  1. A higher number of jobs in the market
  2. No specific academic or professional qualifications to start
💡 A professional resume is the only way to face the rising demand and stand out from the crowd to get called for an interview.

Secretary Resume Example

Jeniffer Lawrence
Secretary
[email protected]
+1 213 48 32 18
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeniffer

Professional summary

Dedicated Secretary with 5+ years of experience excited in joining MCL LLC to become a key player in the administrative support. In my previous position, I was the secretary to the CEO and played a major role in increasing the overall admin staff efficiency by 20% by introducing a cloud-based admin support system 

Aug 2019 to Present
JCREW LLC

  • Recruiting, shortlisting, and interviewing new employees
  • Maintained Google calendar and appointment reminders for the Operations Manager
  • Increased operational efficiency by 20% by introducing a cloud-based information sharing system for the office staff
  • Called key stakeholders on behalf of the Manager (10-15 calls every day)
  • Prepared expenses report and carried out travel planning for the CEO using MS Office

Education

Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, 2015-2018
Columbia University, NY

  • Business strategy
  • Management accounting
  • Management reporting

GPA- 3.8/4
Diploma in IT, 2018-2019
Institute of Information Technology, NY

  • Microsoft office suite
  • Database management

Skill Certifications

MS Office Specialist Expert Certification

Skills

Communication
Business intelligence
Detailed oriented
Expense report creation
Travel schedules planning
Making professional calls
Database management and experienced SAP user
Manage Google Calendar and Scheduling

How to make a Professional Secretary Resume

Writing your resume for the secretary position should be well organized like most of your administrative duties in the office. Follow these general guidelines and tips for success.

  • Keep your resume to one page
  • Adhere to a standard layout and a structure
  • Read the job descriptions several times and pick the important keywords
  • Write to the point
  • Give priority to your strengths

A hiring manager in a reputable company gets hundreds of applications for a demanding position like a secretary. Therefore, on average, they spend only around 5-7 seconds on one application.

Therefore you need to make sure two things,

  1. To make a positive impression within those few seconds
  2. To make your resume better than most of the others so that the hiring manager spends more than average time on your resume

To do this, we need a clean layout and a consistent structure.

The layout of the Secretary Resume

Start by planning your resume’s layout. It’s then a matter of filling in your information. Use the following layout to create a professional resume for your next secretary job.

  • Name and contact information in the header
  • Professional summary
  • Work experience
  • Education
  • Skills
  • Additional sections

The structure of the Secretary Resume

There are three main types of standard resume structures.

  1. Functional
  2. Reverse Chronological
  3. Hybrid

For a secretary position, we recommend you use a reverse chronological structure. For example, when you list down your experience section, you should start with your most recent experience first and the rest comes after that in the order.

Hiring managers love this structure as it gives them quick access to the latest information about you.

Start with the Header of the Secretary Resume

The experience section of your resume is often overlooked, but it’s the second most important part of your resume because every recruiter reads this section and if you have made a mistake here, you are out!

Therefore, we will start with this simple yet important section of your resume.

Example of a good header for a Secretary

CORRECT
Jeniffer Lawrence
Secretary
[email protected]
+1 213 48 32 18
https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeniffer
INCORRECT
Secretary
Jeniffer Lawrence
[email protected]
+1 213 48 32 18
101, main street, apt 198,
Washington DC
USA

Consider the following highlights while you write this section,

  • Beginning: Start with your name. Not with your position
  • Email: Use a professional email to send your resume. Do not use emails with fancy usernames. You can always create a new email to send resumes but make sure you get notifications for new emails.
  • Address: Do not mention your residential address. It is not necessary and clutters the resume.
  • Social media links: if you have a LinkedIn account that is well optimized, put that link there

Is a photo required in your Secretary Resume?

In most cases, NO!

The majority of the organizations in the USA prefer not to have a photograph of the applicant on their resumes. They consider it as discrimination to influence recruiting decisions based on the look of the applicant.

If the job description does not ask for a photograph, it is always safer to avoid using one.

Professional summary for Secretary

This is a mini version of your resume where you write your sales pitch to impress the HR manager. Use a maximum of 2-3 sentences to describe why you are a great fit for this role.

In the following two situations, you should use an Objective Summary instead of a Professional Summary,

  1. Change of career
  2. Not having previous experience

Take this professional summary as a guide to write yours. Check whether you can identify the difference between the CORRECT and INCORRECT summaries.

INCORRECT
A motivated worker with 5+ years of secretary experience, having hands-on experience in administrative functions in the current job looking for an opportunity in a senior position
CORRECT
Dedicated Secretary with 5+ years of experience excited in joining MCL LLC to become a key player in the administrative function in a dynamic work environment. In my previous position, I was the secretary to the CEO and played a major role in increasing the overall admin staff efficiency by 20% by introducing a cloud-based admin support system

Use the keywords from the job description. Match their requirements in your professional resume summary and show them that you are the one they are looking for. Pick your skills and experience from your previous positions and work to match the personality they want.

Work Experience in the Secretary Resume

80% of the recruiters make their shortlisting decisions entirely on the experience section of your secretary resume. If you have some solid experience to showcase here, congratulations! You can easily get to the top 5% of the applications just by following this guide and writing your experience in the most impressive form.

Describe your professional experiences on your Secretary Resume

Here are some general guidelines to describe the professional experience section of your resume,

  • Quantify the achievements in your previous work
  • Use the reverse chronological order to list the experience
  • Use more space to describe the latest experience
  • Be relevant to the job description

Examples of professional experiences for Secretary beginner/junior

Following is a sample work history section for an entry level office secretary resume 

INCORRECT
Aug 2019 to Present
JCREW LLC
  • Engaged in staff member recruitment
  • Worked as a front desk receptionist
  • Maintained the calendar
  • Typing and proofreading documents
  • Making important calls
  • Executed data entry
CORRECT
Aug 2019 to Present
JCREW LLC
  • Recruiting, shortlisting, and interviewing new employees
  • Maintained Google calendar and appointment reminders for the Operations Manager
  • Increased operational efficiency by 20% by introducing a cloud-based information sharing system for the office staff
  • Called key stakeholders on behalf of the Manager (10-15 calls every day)
  • Prepared expenses report and carried out travel arrangements for the CEO 

If you have little or no experience as a secretary in your previous positions, try to align your experience to the job requirement. For instance, if you worked in an administrative assistant role, working with Microsoft Office, preparing any legal documents or quotations would be relevant experience.

Examples of work experience for Senior Secretary

Following is a sample experience section for a senior level legal secretary resume 

INCORRECT
Aug 2016 to Present
AP Associates 
  • Collected client information
  • Maintained legal correspondence
  • Proofread legal and other documents
  • Scheduled meetings for attorneys
  • Involved in other administrative duties
  • Increased overall customer satisfaction
CORRECT
Aug 2016 to Present
AP Associates 
  • Edited and proofread legal correspondence with 100% accuracy
  • Acted as the moderator for client meetings and assisted the attorneys with documents
  • Updated Google calendars of 5 attorneys on monthly basis
  • Assisted the clients in collecting required legal documents
  • Introduced a new appointment booking system using Calendly, combining with Microsoft teams for virtual meetings

For senior secretary positions, it is vital to showcase your experience in the right way. Experienced secretaries are generally recruited to work for top-level executives in an organization.

Mention the positions of the executives you have worked for. Briefly describe the work you carried out. Use numbers to gain credibility.

Education in the Secretary Resume

There is no hard and fast rule as to the education qualifications a secretary should possess. However, some organizations would ask for a bachelor’s degree as the minimum requirement.

In addition, any qualification in HR, administration, or management would be taken as relevant education.

If you are applying for an entry level position, you could even list down your high school achievements in the education section.

Should you start with education or work experience for a Secretary?

This solely depends on your strengths. Senior secretary positions with solid experience should start with their more valuable experience sections. Similarly, entry level job seekers could start with their education.

How to properly list your education in a Secretary Resume

To present your education credentials, use a consistent format. The following is what we recommend:

  • Start with your degree type and major

Eg: Bachelor’s degree in business administration

  • Specify the year of graduation and the year of commencement
  • The university or institution and its location

Eg: Columbia University, NY

  • Achievements, honors, or awards
  • Describe your main learnings if relevant
  • You can also mention your grade point average if it is greater than 3.0

Example of the education section of a Secretary

Education

Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, 2015-2018
Columbia University, NY

  • Business strategy
  • Management accounting
  • Management reporting

GPA- 3.8/4

Diploma in IT, 2018-2019
Institute of Information Technology, NY

  • Microsoft office suite
  • Database management

Secretary Resume Skills Section

In our experience, we have seen more than 80% of the candidates applying for secretary positions write general sets of skills on their resumes.

This makes life easier for the hiring manager in shortlisting. Why? They reject all of them!

Therefore, it is vital to write the right set of skills aligned with both your experience and the job description.

The job description is the easiest place to start. Highlight all the skill expectations in the job search advertisement in both Responsibilities and Qualifications Required sections.

We recommend writing a mix of Soft, Hard, and IT skills in this section.

What are the main skills sought for in a Secretary Resume?

Following are the skill types recruiters generally expect in a secretary resume.

Soft Skills: There is no standard way of measuring these kinds of skills

  • Communication skills
  • Time management
  • Listening skill
  • Business intelligence
  • Teamwork
  • Detail-oriented
  • Problem-solving
  • Interpersonal skills

Hard Skills and IT skills: These skills are more specific and easier to assess based on the candidate’s experience and education and add value to your resume

  • Fast typing speed (words/minute)
  • Administrative duties
  • Expense reports creation
  • Taking calls for professional company requirements
  • Microsoft Office 360
  • Familiarity with CRM, SAP, ORACLE
  • Manage Google Calendar and schedules
  • Managing correspondence
  • Taking meeting minutes
  • Project management

Relevant skills for a junior secretary

A junior secretary would probably be assigned for an operational level manager or an executive. Therefore, focus more on writing an operational level skill requirement. Write Soft, Hard, and IT skills.

  • Communication skill
  • Listening skills
  • Time management
  • Administrative duties
  • Typing speed 100 WPM
  • Greeting visitors
  • Making professional calls
  • Microsoft excel
  • Manage Google Calendar and Scheduling

What skills for a qualified senior secretary

Senior secretaries are generally assigned to top-level executives and company owners. Focus on writing relevant managerial level skills while following the job search advertisement.

  • Communication
  • Business intelligence
  • Detailed oriented
  • Problem-solving
  • Expense report creation
  • Travel schedules planning
  • Making professional calls
  • Database management and experienced SAP user
  • Manage Google Calendar and Scheduling

Additional Headings for your Secretary Resume

Additional headings are a way to showcase your top performance in a more visible way to the recruiter.

Think of it like this. When the recruiter has gone through your basic qualifications and experience and realized that you are a match, there are so many others that meet these basic requirements. Then they see you have a Professional Certificate in Secretariat in the additional skills section. What would be their reaction? You would probably get management’s attention!

Computer skills and certifications in a Secretary Resume

A relevant skill certification would act as a catalyst in the shortlisting process. You can list them even if you have not completed the certificate.

One of the TOP certifications is the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) CAP (Certified Administrative Professional) credential. To obtain the credential, you need to fulfill the education and experience requirements stated by the institution.

There are many local and international credentials for administrative and secretary positions.

Relevant computer skills include Microsoft applications (advanced Excel, PowerPoint, Power apps, Power Automate, Sharepoint, Teams), CRM and ERP systems, Digital marketing. Any of these skills would add value to your profile.

Interests in a Secretary Resume

Listing your interests is not necessary in most cases for a secretary resume. 

If you have interests such as being active in a toastmasters club or writing for a magazine, things that directly or indirectly add value, you may consider including them in the resume.

Do not include generic interests such as watching movies, playing badminton, or reading books as these will not add any value to your profile. This kind of information would only distract the potential employers from reading the important sections of your resume.

Languages in a Secretary Resume

As most organizations have foreign clients, business partners, and employees, having fluency in a couple of languages would always come in handy for a secretary.

When you state the languages, also mention the level of fluency for each language.

Some job descriptions specifically mention the languages or accents you should be familiar with. 

Sample Resume for Secretary

Summary: Key Points for Writing a Perfect Secretary Resume

  • Your name and contact information should appear at the top of your resume. Keep it to 4-5 lines
  • The summary is a 2-3 sentence statement highlighting your greatest achievements, experience, and skills
  • Use reverse chronological order to list down your experience. Write relevant to the specific position you are applying for.
  • If you have a strong education background that surpasses your experience, list the education section before the experience.
  • Write a mix of soft skills, hard skills, and IT skills. Keep it to a maximum of 5-8 lines
  • Use additional sections such as Skill Certifications, Interests, Languages appropriately to create a pleasant surprise for the hiring manager

Write a Secretary Cover Letter That Goes With Your Resume

A cover letter is your sales pitch to the hiring manager. Describe why you are excited to join the organization and how your skills, experience, and education would be beneficial to them.

Good cover letters would always positively complement the resumes.

A recent survey suggested the vast majority of employers expect to receive a cover letter with a resume so make sure you send one with the resume.

Frequently Asked Questions for a Secretary Resume

How do I write a resume for a secretary?

Plan your resume’s layout first. Next, you need to enter your information. For a professional secretary’s resume, follow this format.

  • Name, position, email, contact number in the header
  • Professional summary
  • Work experience
  • Education
  • Skills
  • Additional sections (Skill Certifications, Interests, Languages)

What is a good secretary resume objective?

If you are applying for an entry level secretary job, a career objective would be ideal to showcase your enthusiasm towards the position. Here is an example objective for a sample secretary resume:

“Enthusiastic college graduate seeking to join ABC LLC as a secretary with the necessary skills to be a profitable addition to the team. I have excelled in advanced MS Office, SAP and worked as a part-time receptionist for answering client calls in a reputed company”.

What is the secretary job description?

An office secretary facilitates office communication and interacts with clients. Their responsibilities include answering and redirecting phone calls, scheduling meetings, and providing personalized support to other employees, especially to the management.

Having hands-on experience in managing MS Office applications, managing correspondence, writing letters, and proofreading managerial reports are some of the skills required. 

What skills do secretaries need?

Secretaries need a combination of Soft, Hard, and IT skills. Here are some of them:

  • Communication
  • Time management
  • Listening skill
  • Business intelligence
  • Fast learner
  • Fast typing speed (words/minute)
  • Administrative duties
  • Expense reports creation
  • Taking phone calls for professional requirements
  • Microsoft Office 360
  • Familiarity with CRM, SAP, ORACLE
  • Manage Google Calendar and schedules
  • Managing correspondence
  • Taking meeting minutes

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