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Key skills for business support staff

Continued growth in the market means employers are now looking to increase support for their divisions and more job opportunities have become available.

In this article we discuss some of the skills sets that are currently required to obtain a role as a business support professional.

Do you have specialist skills?

Employers are still seeking core skills such as strong IT skills, time and diary management across different time zones, and both written and verbal communication skills. However, along with this broad expertise, employers are also highlighting specialised skills which set professionals apart from competition in their job search.

Mandarin is a pre-requisite for many companies nowadays, and additional language skills are always a positive to have, such as French, Spanish or Japanese. In the legal sector, basic understanding of legal documents and the ability to draft offers are highly valued.

Demand for systems experience

Employers are also looking for strong systems experience, with Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint among the most desired.

Along with skills, sector experience can help set you apart from other candidates. Employers are looking for people who will hit the ground running in their jobs, which previous experience can allow. Business support professionals who are able to support multiple stakeholders, both within a team and one-to-one setting, are also highly desirable. For office managers, prior experience in setting up of new offices is a major plus point.

Progress your career

Secretarial and office administration candidates are high in demand in the financial services, FMCG, legal, pharmaceuticals and professional service sectors.

The lack of candidates for these roles is another reason companies are seeking professionals who are dynamic, adaptable and have the strong transferrable skills mentioned earlier. Investing in these skills provides professionals the opportunity to progress their career when exciting new opportunities arise.

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