Office Support roles encompass Clerical/Admin and Customer Services focused roles. Most Office Support roles would require you to be a key point of contact within any organisation as the Team Administrator or PA for example.
Or you could be the first impression of an organisation as their ‘front-line’ Customer Service Officer or Receptionist. Office Support work requires you to be a team player, make a good first impression on the business, and support colleagues in the organisation. Office Support roles are vital for any organisation to keep it running seamlessly.
“If you are an organised person with a genuine desire to help people and make a positive impact to a business then Office Support roles are where you will see your personality traits help you pursue a successful career. You do not need specific qualifications but you do need a certain drive and passion. Some experience helps but you can’t always train integrity. ”Aimee Brown, Senior Consultant, Office Support
What are the benefits of working in an office support role?
Working in an office environment comes with a multitude of perks, from being able to socialise with colleagues and being a part of the office culture, to the development of emotional intelligence and communication skills, the application of which goes beyond just the office.
Beyond the day-to-day satisfaction of working in these roles, office support jobs are usually easy to move into at entry level and come with a clearly defined career path so that you can work your way up the career ladder or specialise and move into a new role or department within the office.
Office Support roles in the Housing sector
Some Office Support roles work as the ‘foot in the door’ positions for individuals who are looking to progress their careers. For example, you may have no Housing experience and go into a Housing Call Centre and then work your way up into a Housing Officer position (where our Housing Management team will gladly assist).
Other routes include Customer Service Officer progressing up to Customer Service Management. Or you could start as an Administrator and work your way up to a high-level Personal/Executive Assistant within Property. These roles are integral and provide a good baseline to start/build on your career.
Customer Service Officer
People tend to have the most familiarity with a role of this kind. Customer service assistants or advisors (as they are also known) are the ‘front line workforce’ who are responsible for ensuring customer success and representing the company. Regardless of your experience or qualifications, customer service staff need three things: a good personality, patience and to be naturally customer orientated.
Within the housing sector, Customer Service Advisors would be responsible for answering calls/queries ranging from Tenancy, ASB (anti-social behaviour), taking rent payments or repairs and maintenance as well as other types of calls. These officers are a ‘jack of all trades’ who more often than not, get to know a bit about every part of Social Housing in order to lead the Customer to an appropriate resolution.
Salary: £18,000 – £30,000
Contactor: £11 – £17
Similarly to Customer Service roles, people working in Office Admin must have good written and verbal communication, with the addition of good computer skills including MS Office and often a knowledge of specific systems that an organisation is using is needed.
Regardless of sector, Administration is an umbrella term that can cover many bases. Within Housing you could be looking at a Tenant Support Administrator or a Housing Administrator or within Property maybe a Compliance Administrator or Repairs Administrator.
Ultimately, Admin roles are a little more technical, computer focused and data orientated, therefore they need someone with acute computer skills and attention to detail.
From time to time, we will also get basic Data Entry roles that involve moving data from place to place or cross-referencing spreadsheets etc.
Salary: £18,000 – £34,000
Contractor: £12 – £22 per hour
A commonly found Office Support role in Housing, Repairs Schedulers must have a knowledge of Housing Repairs and Maintenance and be able to build good relationships with both tenants and contractors.
Day to day, their role involves, speaking to residents regarding repairs and booking in works with operatives or contractors, managing the diaries of the operatives/contractors to ensure they know where they are going and at what time, and following up on repairs to ensure they are being done to a satisfactory standard. Essentially a repairs scheduler is the middle person between the resident and the contractor/operative to ensure all works are carried out properly.
Salary: £23,000 – £36,000
Contractor: £12 – £26
Here’s where those communication skills, emotional intelligence and knowledge of the industry are really tested. A Complaints Officer must follow a strict process of acknowledging, investigating and responding to complaints from housing residents. There’s an element of offering support and advice to residents, as well as communicating with internal teams to understand and rectify or escalate the complaint.
Salary: £28,000 – £40,000 + dependent on experience
Contractor: £16-£28 per hour
Customer Service Manager/Head of Customer Service
As the name implies, a Customer Service Manager or Head of Department must have extensive experience within the department as well as management experience. If you worked up to this role, it’s likely that you’d receive training to elevate into this kind of senior role, alongside having the experience of the industry needed to help make key decisions.
In short, the Head of is responsible for managing the Customer Service Officers and in some instances also Team Leaders, doing 1:1s, appraisals, monitoring the service and ensuring KPIs are being met by Customer Service Officers.
Salary: £30,000 – £80,000+
Contractor: £17 – £50 per hour
Executive Assistant or Personal Assistant
An EA or PA role is probably one of the most intense roles within an organisation, though this is offset with a sizable salary as remuneration for the level of organisation and extended hours that are required. Whilst some PA/EA’s are more administrative others are almost like business partners to CEOs for example.
No qualifications are necessarily needed although some people do take Secretarial courses, with experience usually being gained in Admin then as a Team Administrator then a PA than an EA.
A PA is usually there to help Directors or Board Level Executives with minute taking, diary management, and travel arrangements and keep them working smoothly. An EA is slightly different as they tend to have more of an input in Board meetings and Business decisions, though PA/EA job titles can be interchangeable depending on the job spec.
Salary: £27,000 – £65,000
Contractor: £15 – £35 per hour