How To Hire An Executive Assistant

Complete with job descriptions, skill profiles, and interview templates. Use this Executive Assistant hiring guide to help you make the right decisions, fast.

Executive Assistant Recruitment Guide

What does an Executive Assistant do?

An Executive Assistant works directly with executives and provides administrative support that will support them to perform their job. The role of an Executive Assistant is critical in the business as they assist key people with preparing documents, managing their calendar, and organising their days.

Day to day tasks of a Executive Assistant

Skills assessment

Executive Assistant definition

An Executive Assistant’s primary responsibility is to provide administrative support to the executive or executives for whom they work with. Because of this, they require skills that allow them to work on a variety of clerical tasks quickly but efficiently.

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HIRING PROCESS

Executive Assistant Hiring Process

Step 1: Understand the role
Step 2: Source Applicants
Step 3: Skills Assessment
Step 4: Interview
Step 5: Hire

Build the Ideal Candidate Profile​

To find the best person for the role, you need to understand what the role involves. You can complete this with the hiring manager to define the role, its contribution, and the skills needed.

Write A Job Description Based On Skills

Once you understand the requirements for the role, you’ll need to understand the skills for success. You can then write an effective job description to promote your role.

Selecting The Ideal Candidate

See which applicants have the right skills for the role. Send all your applicants a Vervoe skills assessment from the expert library, or customize one for your organization.

Interview Top Performers

Your skills assessment results will identify top performers. Focus your time on interviewing those that have met or exceeded your requirements. Assessment results will also help guide which skill areas to focus on in the interview.

Making An Offer

Once you assess your candidates against these skills, you’re ready to offer the top performer(s). You should base your offer on the value that the candidate would bring to your team and your business as a whole. It is also important to ensure your compensation and benefits packages are competitive in the industry and help you attract and retain the top talent.
Build the ideal candidate profile

Skills needed for a Executive Assistant

An Executive Assistant must have excellent organizational and multitasking skills. Because of the nature of the job, an Executive Assistant needs to be sharp and resilient.

Pro Tip

You might receive a number of applications for this role, rather than a particular Executive Assistant. Ensure that you highlight the key skills needed for this role, and the expectations from them. You can also provide details about the company’s mission and vision so that applicants can align their objectives.

WRITE A JOB DESCRIPTION BASED ON SKILLS

How to write a Executive Assistant job description

Once you’ve determined the skills required for the role, you can write the job description to advertise for your position. Here’s what to include in your Executive Assistant job description:

Job Title: What position are you hiring for?

Summary: What makes your company unique? What would it be like to work for you?

Responsibilities: An overview of the role’s day-to-day activities, and how the position contributes to the organization

Requirements: Skills a candidate must have to perform the job successfully

Benefits: Details of compensation, benefits, and any perks on offer

Pro Tip

In building your candidate profile, remember you’ve already identified what skills are needed to succeed in the role. Here’s where to list your “must-have” skills and maybe a couple of “nice-to-have” skills. For example, an Executive Assistant must be organised, and it would also be nice to have experience in accounting software.

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SELECTING THE IDEAL CANDIDATE

Sample skill tests for a Executive Assistant

Create a free account today to access the full assessment and more from our library

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Question 1

Organization

Question Type: Text

Being spread across multiple projects, tasks, and activities can be quite overwhelming, especially in a new environment, it can lead to stress and impact your mental health as well as your performance. 

How do you keep on top of multiple projects when you are supporting top-level executives?

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Question 2

Communication

Question Type: Text

Bob and Peter are in a customer workshop and have given strict instructions not be disturbed. During the workshop you become aware that a major security breach has been detected and a negative article is about to be published online. You have tried to contact Bob and Peter by email, but there is no response. 

What do you do?

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Question 3

Attention to Detail

Question Type: Document

One of the Executives has started offering Mentoring for individuals wanting to excel their careers. She has asked if you could read over the mentoring agreement and make any necessary changes.

Please review the document below and note any changes.

INTERVIEW TOP PERFORMERS

How to interview a Executive Assistant

Once your Vervoe skills assessment has surfaced the most qualified people for your open role, you can focus on interviewing these candidates. The interview should focus on any skills that require development that were highlighted from the skills assessment.

Now you know that candidates can do the job, the interview becomes more of a relationship building exercise where you can get to know the candidate on a more personal level, understand their motivations, and how they would fit in with the team.

Making An Offer

How much does it cost to hire a Executive Assistant?

The US average for an Executive Assistant, according to Glassdoor.com, is $49,996, while from Talent.com, it is at $50,000. The average salary varies depending on the location and years of experience but the range of salary starts from $37,000 and can reach up to $124,000.

Executive Assistant Salary United States

Executive Assistants’ average salary in the United States is around $50,000. The lowest reported salary is at $37,000, and the highest can go up to $124,000.

Executive Assistant Salary United Kingdom

Executive Assistants’ average salaries in the United Kingdom range from £32,406 – £40,057 (GBP). The lowest reported salary is at £23,000, while the highest is at £56,000 (GBP). These figures depend on the years of experience in the profession, additional skills, and the location.

Executive Assistant Salary Australia

Executive Assistants’ average salaries in Australia range from $73,537 – $86,361 (AUD). The lowest salary reported is at $54,000, while the highest reported is at $99,835.