Administration Officer

Administration officers perform a range of administrative tasks to ensure an organisation functions efficiently. Administration officers are required to have an understanding of the purpose and background of the organization they are working for and the roles of other staff. 

They must know about office methods and systems, office equipment, software packages and health and safety in the workplace. They may also need to have knowledge of budgeting and report writing.

The job of administration officers has changed significantly in recent years. Whereas, previously, administration officers spent a lot of time performing traditional administrative tasks such as typing and filing, increasingly the job has expanded to include project management or support work, desktop publishing, computer training and assistance and web page development.

New technology has had a major impact on the role of administration officers. Increased office automation has assisted administrative work, making administration officers more efficient and productive, and in some organisations this has meant a reduction in the number of administration officers employed. Experience in computer software programmes is becoming increasingly important and continuing advances made in information technology mean that they will be required to continually update their IT knowledge in the foreseeable future.

Administration officers usually work regular office hours. Administration officers use computers, software packages, fax machines, telephone systems, filing systems; salary and leave record systems; photocopiers and binding machines. They may also be required to use a company car and have knowledge of statutes, Acts and other regulations.

Personal Requirements

  • time management skills
  • good communication and writing skills
  • problem-solving skills
  • computer literacy, with word processing skills
  • ability to multi-task and work well within a team environment
  • tolerant, helpful and friendly
  • responsible and reliable
  • neat and accurate
  • adaptability, to take on new responsibilities as required
  • aptitude for figures
  • clean and tidy appearance

How to Enter

Schooling & School Subjects

Minimum entry: National Senior Certificate (Matric) 
Compulsory subjects: None
Recommended subjects: MathematicsAccountingBusiness StudiesEconomics  

In addition, check the admission requirements for the degree or diploma you intend applying for.

What to Study

Degree: Most universities offer a BAdmin degree, alternatively a BA degree, with such majors as: Business Administration, an official language, Psychology, Industrial Psychology, Sociology, Communication, Public Administration, Political Science, Economics and/or Business Economics. Public Administration is offered at NMMU, UFH, UWC, UV and UNISA.

Diploma: Most universities of technology offer diplomas in Public Management and a CIS can be very useful in this career. - e.g. CPUT, TUT.

Many administration officers gain skills on the job and many will be required to attend regular training courses on office procedures and information technology. Various government departments offer further in-service training.


  • most commercial firms and large industrial organisations
  • banks and building societies
  • government departments

Further Information

South African Council for Administrators\
P. O. Box 37493 
076 195 8342

The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) 
Riviera Road Office Park (Block C)
6 – 10 Riviera Road
Killarney, 2193
Johannesburg, South Africa
Tel: (011) 551-4000

Institute of Administration and Commerce of South Africa
Glosderry, 7702 
252 Rosmead Avenue
Tel: (021) 761-6211

Getting Started

  • talk to an administrative officer and ask permission to observe them at work
  • obtain vacation work in an administrative position at some organisation
  • visit careers exhibitions

Programmes by Study Institutions

Related Occupations

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