How To Become a Business Assistant

Updated June 24, 2022

A business assistant is a professional who provides office support for a company or organization. Skilled in administrative and communication tasks, these professionals often act as a liaison between other professionals and the public. If you are interested in a career as a business assistant, it's helpful to understand the steps and process to become one. In this article, we explore the career of a business assistant, including what they do, their salary, skills, work environment and the steps for becoming a business assistant.

What is a business assistant?

Business assistants are administrative professionals who help senior and mid-level management officials achieve their primary duties. Also known as an administrative assistant, these professionals often work in financial, business and management industries, but can find employment in any field that requires significant office-based work.

Administrative assistants ensure efficiency and organization in the workplace and help other professionals focus on the technical duties of their jobs while business assistants focus on filing paperwork and managing office-related work.

Related: Administrative Assistant vs. Receptionist: What's the Difference?

What do business assistants do?

Business assistants help other professionals with administrative and other office tasks. This can help achieve workplace efficiency and accuracy in paperwork. Here's a list of the primary duties business assistants can be responsible for:

  • Improving the administrative process

  • Scheduling meetings

  • Drafting emails and memos to ensure company communication

  • Stocking office supplies

  • Conducting research for senior and mid-level professionals

  • Preparing company reports

  • Planning office events

  • Coordinating between departments

  • Filing paperwork

  • Managing billing information

Read more: Learn About Being an Administrative Assistant

How to become a business assistant

If you are interested in becoming a business assistant, you can follow these steps:

1. Complete a high school or GED program

The minimum educational requirement for an entry-level business assistant position is a high school diploma or GED. If you are more interested in gaining experience than pursuing advanced education, consider looking for an entry-level position after completing a high school or equivalent program.

Though professionals often need higher education to get promotions and increase their earning potential, relevant work experience can sometimes serve as a substitute. Even if you plan on attending a two- or four-year educational program, it's helpful to seek an entry-level position at a company that will hire you if you only have a high school diploma or GED so you can earn valuable work experience.

2. Pursue a college degree

Earning additional education can increase your chances of being hired and earning potential. Though companies may not always require a college degree, many prefer candidates to have at least an associate degree in a business, management or liberal arts field.

If you are interested in working as a business assistant in the financial industry or for a government-owned organization, you might earn a bachelor's degree in business administration or in a financial field.

3. Earn a certification

Certifications can help you stand out in the application process and increase your knowledge in the industry. Many business professionals choose to pursue a certification in computer programs that apply to administrative work, such as a Microsoft training certification. This certification can help improve a professional's proficiency in using one of the most common office software programs that many companies use for administrative tasks.

Many Microsoft certifications have different qualifications, but professionals can achieve most of these certifications by earning a passing score on an exam. Some of these exams even offer practice tests. Consider taking advantage of these practice quizzes in order to help you study and increase your skill level.

Read more: A Guide To Microsoft Certifications: Types, Impact and Paths

4. Gain work experience

If you have not already worked in an entry-level administrative assistant position, it's helpful to gain work experience in a relevant field. You might apply for jobs that can help you earn this experience, such as working as a customer service representative, secretary or personal assistant.

5. Complete a training program

Companies often have specific training processes for business assistants, since each company operates differently. These on-the-job training programs can last anywhere from a couple of weeks to a few months. In this time, new business assistants often shadow more experienced professionals to learn how to perform their primary duties properly.

What skills do you need to be a business assistant?

Here is a list of skills you may need as a business assistant:

  • Organization: Business assistants use their organizational skills to keep a neat workspace and efficiently file and store paperwork.

  • Customer service: These professionals can benefit from having strong customer service skills when making and receiving phone calls and coordinating between clients and other professionals.

  • Data entry: Business assistants often need to be skilled in data entry and analysis in order to create and maintain accurate business records for their company.

  • Written communication: Because they often write memos, emails and reports for the company and customers, business assistants often need strong writing skills.

  • Time management: Business assistants may create schedules for themselves and their coworkers. In order to follow scheduling requirements, these professionals use their time-management skills to ensure they are productive and schedule meetings at the best time for everyone involved.

  • Computer skills: Because they perform many of their primary duties through a computer application or program, business assistants benefit from having proficient computer skills.

  • Teamwork: Business assistants often act as liaisons between departments and must confer with their coworkers to plan meetings, coordinate schedules and complete projects.

Read more: 8 Must-Have Administrative Assistant Skills


A business assistant's salary often depends on their location, educational background and work experience. The average national salary for a business assistant is $39,044 per year. Professionals may increase their earning potential by gaining more experience or earning additional education or certifications.

Related: 23 High-Paid Administrative Jobs

What is a business assistant's work environment like?

Business assistants most often work in office settings. Typically, they work full-time during regular business hours, however, some entry-level business assistant jobs can offer part-time work. These professionals also often work on teams of differently skilled professionals and can work in the administrative department of nearly any industry.

Please note that none of the companies mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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