Local government administrative assistant

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Local government administrative assistants provide clerical support in council departments and give information to the public.

Salary Range: £15,500 to £21,000

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You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly
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You could take a college course to learn some of the skills and knowledge needed in this job. Courses include:

  • Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Business Administration
  • Level 3 Diploma in Business Administration

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
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You could do an apprenticeship to get into this job. The exact apprenticeship you do will depend on your duties but examples include:

  • public service operational delivery officer advanced apprenticeship
  • intermediate or advanced apprenticeship in business and administration 

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship
  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
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Direct application

You could apply directly to become a local government administrative assistant. Employers may ask for a few GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C). An understanding of common office software packages and experience of working in customer service could give you an advantage.

As part of the application process you could be tested for your skills in communication and IT, and ability with numbers.

More information

Further information

The Local Government Association has a guide on what it’s like to work for a local authority and the different careers that are available.

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Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • administration skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with others
  • the ability to work on your own
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • customer service skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently
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Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • dealing with enquiries by phone, online, in writing or in person
  • looking up information on a computer system
  • filing and photocopying
  • producing and sending letters
  • sorting, recording and distributing mail
  • dealing with cash and payments
  • updating computerised and clerical records
  • acting as a secretary or personal assistant (PA) to a manager

Working environment

You could work in an office.

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With experience, you could progress to office manager, or jobs with more responsibility in other departments. 

You could also move into administrative work in other sectors.