An office clerk does a variety of clerical tasks such as typing, editing routine memos, filing records, and answering phones. They have duties that often change daily depending on the needs of their employer and the type of office in which they work. General office clerks can be found working in healthcare facilities, government offices, schools, and other places of industry.
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How to Become an Office Clerk
A high school diploma or the equivalent is usually expected for a general office clerk to gain employment. It is common for the employee to learn job skills while working on the job and training normally lasts about 1 month. On-the-job training includes learning office procedures, use of office equipment, required phone etiquette, and perhaps computer applications.
General office clerks may have opportunities for advancement to executive secretary or executive administrative assistant with work experience and knowledge of computer applications.
Job Description of an Office Clerk
The duties of a general office clerk typically include providing information to the public, clients or staff, as well as answering the phone, transferring calls, and taking messages. They sort and deliver incoming mail and send outgoing mail. They are responsible for scheduling appointments and receiving visitors or customers. They may type documents, edit routine memos, or format reports. He or she may copy, file, update paper and electronic documents, and prepare and process bills or other office documents.
A general office clerk would collect information and perform data entry. Some must enter data into computers or perform some tasks using software applications. It is common for the employee to use fax machines, photocopying machines, and scanners. The variety of tasks of the general office clerk depends on the type of office he or she works in.
Office Clerk Video Transcript
Offices everywhere, whether they’re in a school, a government agency, or a hospital, rely on office clerks to help keep them running. General office clerks perform a variety of clerical tasks from answering telephones to typing documents and filing records. Rather than performing a single specialized task, these clerks have responsibilities that change with the needs of the employer, their duties may even change daily.
Some clerks enter data into computers or use software applications to perform other tasks. They also frequently use a variety of office equipment such as photocopiers, scanners, and fax machines. A clerk’s specific duties depend on the office they work in. For example, a general office clerk at a college or university may process college applications while a clerk at a hospital may file and retrieve medical records.
Most clerks work in an office setting full time, but part-time positions are not uncommon. Office clerks usually learn their skills while on the job. Their training typically lasts around one month and may include instructions on office equipment, procedures, and proper phone etiquette. Most office clerks need a high school diploma or equivalent. For those who aren’t familiar with word processing and spreadsheet software, computer courses may be helpful.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, General Office Clerks.
National Center for O*NET Development. 43-9061.00. O*NET OnLine.
The career video is in the public domain from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.