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Any tips for an interview as an office assistant?

Hi! I have an interview for an office assistant with the Computer Science department at my school. I was wondering if there was anything in particular I could do to help myself stand out from any competition? Even just general interview tips would help me right now..

Job Description: Help with administrative jobs: provide phone coverage, run errands, sort mail, scanning, copying and general clerical support as required. Proficiency in Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Gmail and Google Calendar, typing/email competence; ability to work well under pressure; ability to multi-task; excellent communication skills. Some lifting of supplies for storage is required. #career-counseling #interviews #interviewing-skills #interview-questions #interviewing #interview-preparation #job-interview

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Carole’s Answer

It is important on any job interview that you a few things before the interview. Her e are a few suggestions:
1. Make sure that you have done some research on school and the Computer Science department. Find out Who are the key personnel, how does this department work, and even dress code, and is it a casual environment or more structured. If you know someone who works there, ask them a few of these questions.
2. Since this is an office assistant job make sure that you have on your resume all the skills that you have to perform the duties that they are describing. Refer to these skills when asked a question about the skill level of your Computer skills, and even bring a copy of something that you have previously done in Excel or Power Point in case they might ask to see this original product.
3. If you research the company on-line you can often pick up important information on this school, that you might be able to offer during the interviewing process. Or you might be able to ask a good question when it is time for you ask the questions. That will show them you have done your research and are very interested in this job position.
4. All the Computer classes that you have taken should be listed on your resume. That way they already have knowledge of your specific abilities. If you took a typing class or a data entry class and got a certification after taking the class, that should also be on your resume and you could make a copy and bring it with you, along with a couple copies of your resume, and references in case they might want these. Your grades and GPA might also be important if they do not have them. Just bring a folder or case with these important papers so that they are with you and you can give them out the moment that they ask.
5. Find out important names in the Computer Dept. and the President and other important people within the school. This gives you a heads up when you sit down with one of these people. You will be a little more relaxed and able to form a better conversation. Interviewing is all about how adaptable you are and knowledgeable you are in presenting yourself to them.
6. If you are looking to answer the questions they might give you, "the Job Search Solution" book is a great resource, but you can always look on line to get question that you can prepare for. It is wise to find a friend or family member to help you answer these questions so that you can practice answering them.
7. Just remember "Preparation and Research is a good motto to influence your Interviewing skills"

I wish you good luck and if you follow some of these ideas I am sure you will do very well in the interview.

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Carmen’s Answer

Be as familiar as you can with what is going on in the department; do they have clubs or events you can make conversation about? Make sure you know which schools/majors you'll be supporting. Know who the heads of the departments are and what organizations they are involved in. If their names are mentioned, you can demonstrate your knowledge subtly. Did someone recommend you for the job? If so, be sure to mention "So-and-so thought I would be a good fit for this job." Overall, you want to make the interviewer feel like you would fit in and that you are already part of the team.

I would also match up the skills in the job descriptions to your experiences. Write yourself a few notes about how you have used Excel, etc. in the past. I've had been given the interview questions "What is the largest Excel project you ever worked on?" and "Can you use Mail Merge?" If you haven't already, check glassdoor.com to see if any interview questions have been posted from past employees. Also check your social networks for anyone that has worked there before and can give you an inside scoop.

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Vineeth’s Answer

During an interview, employers may ask about your interest in their industry, competence in word-processing programs, and your personal skills that you can bring to the company. In addition, be prepared to talk about how you work under stress or handle conflict within the work environment.

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Poonam’s Answer

Here are the best tips for interview as an office assistant:



  • Plan so as to reach on time or a couple of minutes early. A late entry for a job interview is never acceptable.
  • Hold up until the point that you are offered a seat prior to sitting. Sit upright and appear alert and interested. Be a patient and good listener and in addition, a decent talker. Grin!
  • Address the interviewer using their first name.
  • Take after the interviewer’s leads, however, endeavor to get them to depict the position and duties during the early part of the interview. So, you can associate your skills and background to the particular position.
  • Maintain constant eye contact.


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Blake’s Answer

Hey Anina,

I think the most important thing for interviews is to arrive early, and make eye contact while talking. There are a lot of things that can separate one applicant from another, but doing well doing the interview is one of the most important things to get a job.


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Gloria’s Answer

Hi Anina,

I had a manager tell me about the best interview experience she had with someone she was interviewing. She told me that after all the initial questions were done, she offered this person a chance to ask questions or make comments. And the person responded with a 30-60-90 day plan for job if they were hired. They had a plan for how they would best be trained, what important milestones they would reach during that time, and what support they would anticipate receiving. This sounds like the perfect type of element to bring with you for an office assistant, as well as many other roles.

So some of the elements of this document might include:
- Day 1: complete all work paperwork and get identification
- Day 2: Complete access requests and sign into all systems required to do my job going forward
- Day 3: Job shadow for a day someone who already done the job that I will be doing
- Day 30: Sit with my supervisor to determine how I am doing on the job and what adjustments I should make to my performance

Some of these elements are going to be easier to determine based on specific job roles.

Good luck with your interview.

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Lily’s Answer

It's not hard to find a likable person that can do basic office tasks. Really showcase your word, ppt and excel skills. Learn advanced functions and discuss what you've used them for. Offer to show them live or bring files you've worked on and show them.

Also be sure to have good questions to ask them about the position and future growth opportunities.