Company secretary jobs vary according to industry as well as the needs of individual businesses. While company secretary jobs always involve the performance of administrative duties, some secretarial positions require specialized skills. For example, medical secretary jobs may require the performance of some basic medical tasks or insurance coding, while legal secretary jobs may require paralegal training. Company secretaries may eventually move into other parts of the company as they gain more experience, or they may remain in their position of offering administrative support to a company or organization.
Prior to the widespread use of personal computers, secretaries frequently spent a great deal of time typing and distributing office communications. As even high-ranking employees now do their own word processing and communicate via e-mail, company secretaries now are more likely to assist other department members with their work tasks. This situation often requires holders of company secretary jobs to be extremely flexible, as they may be asked to assist in a variety of projects, each requiring different skill sets. For this reason, there is a significant advantage to hiring administrative assistants who have a strong interest in the work of a particular company, as they may be engaged in many different aspects of the company's operations.
Typical generalist company secretary jobs include those of administrative assistant and office manager. An administrative assistant frequently supports a department within a company or in some cases may work directly with a high-ranking manager or executive. The administrative assistant may assist other employees or his manager by scheduling appointments, taking notes in meetings, and making travel arrangements. An administrative assistant often performs general office tasks, such as maintaining hard-copy files. Office managers, on the other hand, facilitate the day-to-day running of an office, acting as a liaison between company management and utility companies and outside contractors and, in some instances, supervising other administrative personnel, including the company receptionist and other secretaries.
The education required for company secretary jobs varies. Some company secretaries and administrative assistants have college degrees and are working in entry-level administrative roles in hopes of promotion. Many secretaries do not have any formal educational credentials, however, though many employers choose to hire secretaries who at least have the equivalent of a high school diploma. In law offices, legal secretaries may be graduates of specialized legal secretary or paralegal programs. Many medical offices hire certified medical assistants to perform both practical medical assistance as well as administrative and secretarial tasks.