Personal assistant

What they do

Personal assistants offer support to managers and senior professionals by undertaking clerical and administrative duties. They answer phone calls and take messages, book appointments, prepare travel itineraries, and make arrangements for appointments and meetings. They may also help to recruit, train and supervise administrative staff, organise the filing and management of data, and organise business functions on behalf of their manager.

Personal assistants are needed around the state, from offices in our busy business districts to regional centres and even in remote area such as mining facilities.

Working conditions

Personal assistants work in offices. They may travel to attend meetings or to help co-ordinate the work activities of senior professionals. They usually work regular office hours, but may be required to work longer hours at times.

Tools and technologies

Personal assistants use office equipment such as computers, and need to be familiar with word processing, data management and presentation development software. They also use photocopiers and faxes, and may also spend a lot of the time on the phone.

How do I become one?

Education and training

It is possible to work as a personal assistant without any formal qualifications and get training on the job. However, entry into this occupation may be improved by obtaining a qualification in business or business administration.

The Certificates III, IV, and Diploma in Business or Business Administration are offered at TAFE Colleges and other registered training organisations throughout Western Australia.

Browse courses through Jobs and Skills WA and search on the My Skills website to find a registered provider near you.

You can also undertake a traineeship in business (level 3 or level 4) or business administration (level 3 or level 4). The traineeships usually take 12 months to complete.

Apprenticeships and traineeships

As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer, enabling you to complete training towards a nationally recognised qualification. You spend  time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider.

You can do an apprenticeship or traineeship if you are a school-leaver, re-entering the workforce or as an adult or mature-aged person wishing to change careers. You can even begin your apprenticeship or traineeship while you're still at school.

If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.