Difference Between Administrative Assistant and Coordinator

The world of business and management offers a lot of opportunities in terms of jobs. It ensures a fruitful career in the long run. Often people assume that some jobs pursue the same duties/ responsibilities, but in reality, they carry their set of tasks that are quite different from each other. For instance, an Administrative Assistant and Coordinator may appear strikingly similar for an amateur but they are not the same. Knowing the differences between them will aid while applying for these positions.   

Administrative Assistant vs Coordinator  

The main difference between an Administrative Assistant and a Coordinator is that an Administrative Assistant performs duties like arranging or organizing meetings and conferences with no clash/ conflict, also carry out the procedure of travel booking including reservations, and is similar to a secretary, whereas a Coordinator executes duties of instructing a team to fulfill a given task, in other terms Coordinator can also be referred to as the Team Leader.  

Administrative Assistant vs Coordinator

An Administrative Assistant typically serves as an assistant in managing and scheduling all the vital events in the office. There are certain specializations too in this job as they can be modified according to the sector that they are working in. Generally, their job includes attestation/ documentation, maintaining all the significant records and files, accounting, auditing, etc.   

On the other hand, a Coordinator is more of a monitoring and implementing job. Typically, they have to keep track of all the important events and projects, also, they have to quote the budget of every project, publish/ establish the protocols and guidelines related to the very project. They commence the duty of organizing training sessions peculiarly for the interns and employees. The distinguishing task of a Coordinator is supervision and surveillance.   

Comparison Table Between Administrative Assistant and Coordinator 

Parameters of Comparison    Administrative Assistant    Coordinator  
Qualifications/ Skills Required    General Education Degree (GED) or Business Associative Degree (In some cases post-graduation may be required)  Management Degree/ Bachelor’s Degree in Business/ Human Resources Degree/ High School Diploma   
 
Key Responsibilities  Communication Management, Scheduling/ Organizing, Auditing, Attesting, etc.  Supervision and Surveillance, Quoting Budgets, Organizing Training Camps, etc.   
  
Additional Skills/ Expertise Required  Computer Skills (Microsoft Word, Excel, Office, etc.), Problem-solving, Ideal Communication Skills, Experience as a Clerk is preferred  Time Management, Ability to Prioritize and Multitask, Flawless Leadership Qualities, Bring about Harmony and unity in the team, etc.   
 
Other Paths to Pursue  Office Administration, Specialization in sectors like Business and Health  Marketing/ Event Coordinator, Sales Coordinator, etc.    
 
Beneficial/ Fruitful Sectors    Business, Management, Education, etc.    Human Resources, Media/ PR, etc.    

What is an Administrative Assistant?  

As mentioned above, an Administrative Assistant is a position that requires tremendous verbal and written communications skills and is more of a secretarial or assisting job. They are usually expected to manage and set up conferences and meetings with no clash or conflict. The vital tasks of an Administrative Assistant are to maintain all the previous as well as present office records, attestation/ documentation, book-keeping, etc.  

They are advised to achieve expertise in Microsoft Office and Excel that will aid in maintaining the files and records. They are expected to be well versed with the computer and software so that they can very well formulate emails, memos, letters, etc.   

Being assistants, they are expected to arrange/ set up all the travel-related bookings right from ticket booking, hotel reservations, etc., officially they are asked to compose spreadsheets to record the annual/ monthly expenditure, prepare for the scheduled conference/ presentations, and so on. Documentation plays a significant role in the day-to-day tasks of Administrative Assistants as they are expected to proofread the records/ documents, note down the minutes of the meeting, etc.  

With increasing opportunities an Administrative Assistant is now open to many sub-branches, to be precise they can easily accomplish specialization in every sector ranging from Legal to Medical. Of course, pursuing specialization denote that they must possess enough knowledge in that particular field, for instance, an Administrative Assistant belonging to the medical sector should possess enough knowledge about the medical terminologies, reports, and protocols, while an assistant involved in the legal sector should understand the legal jargon and procedures.   

Collectively, an Administrative Assistant is expected to be productive, reliable, trustworthy, well versed with computers, ideal conversationalist, cooperative, etc. Over the past decade, the employment rate of Administrative Assistants has tremendously increased which indicates that this particular job is quite necessary for every field/ sector.  

What is a Coordinator?  

Aforementioned, a Coordinator is a title given to a professional who supervises, mentors, and guides his team members to work together in harmony. Their vital tasks include quoting the project/ event budget, keeping a check on all the team member’s progress, etc.   

The qualification requirements of a Coordinator position differ from sector to sector, but to bag the position the basic requirement is a Bachelor’s Degree in Business or Human Resources with decent experience in the field of Event Management.   

Companies usually expect Coordinators to tackle important calls from investors, perfectly execute the presentations and meetings, they are often considered as the link between the chief officer/ executive and the interns or employees. They are solely responsible for the performance of their team members. The newly joined freshers/ interns rely on the coordinators as they are responsible for conducting training sessions for the interns.   

Coordinators are accountable for the glory and honor of the company as they actively train the amateurs as well as monitor and mentor the experienced staff. They must constantly update the employer’s as well as the investor’s or client’s records to avoid any abrupt problem. As they are in charge of supervision, they need to up their skills game by gaining expertise in soft skills like team building, problem-solving, time management, prioritizing, multitasking, etc. Being impulsive is not suitable for this job as it requires tremendous patience to handle all the team members ensuring no dispute between them.   

Coordinators have quite a few options to branch out from their field, they can achieve specialization in fields ranging from Marketing, Sales, Wedding to Communication Coordinator, etc. Depending on the Bachelor’s Degree, Coordinators can also gain expertise in sectors like News and Media, Human Resources, etc.   

Main Differences Between Administrative Assistant and Coordinator  

  1. An Administrative Assistant is a position that is more of an assistant to an admin that involves mostly secretarial jobs, while a Coordinator is someone who supervises and mentors the teammates towards the completion of the project.  
  2. Administrative Assistant is expected to manage travel reservations, proofread vital documents, attest them, etc., on the other hand, a Coordinator is expected to quote the project budget, train interns, convey the messages from chief officer to employees, etc.  
  3. An administrative assistant is expected to master skills like exceptionally good communication skills, Microsoft Office, Excel, etc., whereas a Coordinator is expected to achieve expertise in skills like Leadership, Time Management, etc.  
  4. An administrative Assistant can branch out in sectors like medical, business, and legal, while a Coordinator can branch out in sectors like News, PR, Media, Human Resources, etc.   
  5. The vital tasks of an Administrative Assistant are to take down minutes of the meetings, compose presentations and conduct active research, in contrast, the vital tasks of a Coordinator include Handling multiple office contracts, organizing events and completing projects, training amateurs, etc.  

Conclusion  

From the above-mentioned points, it is clear that both Administrative Assistant and Coordinator jobs carry their set of similarities and differences. An Administrative Assistant is more of a clerical and secretarial job that involves assisting various teams and most importantly to the admin, while a Coordinator is a position that usually involves managing team members and has a resemblance to the job of a Team Leader.   

Nevertheless, both jobs are equally important for a company’s growth. Over the past decade, the demand for both these jobs has increased remarkably. The salaries of both these jobs are almost in the same range and both carry enough scope to be pursued.   

References 

  1. https://reddeer.hgcareers.com/en/js/export/documents/job2942/DSAA%20%20Development%20Services%20Admin%20Assistant.pdf  
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