SECRETARIAL AND OFFICE JOBS
Liberalisation and globalisation have accelerated business activity. Personnel who manage office routine are secretaries, stenographers, and office assistants. Secretarial work is the backbone of efficient office functioning. Office work is handled by the office secretary who works either for a senior manager, for a department, or in an organisation office be it school, business/ corporate, firm or institution. The job is of handling information - receiving, storing, retrieving, passing on, mailing, sending out etc. In a modern office the latest equipments and system of electronically managing information has changed a great deal the work of a secretary.
Subordinate secretarial staff in government offices run the day to day operations of departments and government offices under the direction of government officials, bureaucrats and in ministeries.
NATURE OF WORK
The work of a secretary is basically of an assistant. She/He manages all office work, receives phone calls, takes messages and carries out the bosses instructions. The responsibilities vary from one organization/office to another. The traditional secretary works for one boss. Secretary could work with a team of clerical staff for an organization. Their work is of an office superintendent who keeps track of the organizations projects/assignments, is well informed on all matters and coordinates work through a team of clerks working on separate assignments - typist, correspondence incharge etc. In some organisations a secretary may rise to a junior management position with experience and proven ability.
Secretary's work in an organization may involve collecting and filing documents, making meeting briefs/agenda, informing other departments, summarizing meeting reports, taking dictation and even arranging for meetings with her/his boss of clients/guests, or of the boss with other officials. Most offices functioning depends on the efficiency of the secretary.
Clerical Staff in government offices are also known as lower division clerks. They carry out routine office functions such as maintenance of registers, indexing, making periodical statements, record keeping, submitting routine drafts etc.
The course in secretarial practice includes processing and transmitting information to the office staff and to other organisations, typing and shorthand, commercial practice, computer applications, business English.
The work environment is very variable. In government offices the traditional file keeping procedures are followed. The documentation processes require handling files, documents, retreiving old files and hence the work can be tedious and time consuming. Modern offices, however, have largely replaced the traditional systems. Electronically operated equipments and computerisation has added significant glamour and convenience to the work environment. Modern offices are generally air conditioned, and well designed for efficient working.
If you find routine office work interesting and like a blend of administrative and clerical functioning, secretarial training will, provide a good beginning. Good communication skills - verbal and written, organizing ability, confidence, responsibility, PR acumen, willingness to learn, obey, and take orders are required. Secretarial staffs are expected to be pleasant, helpful and patient.
Secretaries work in a variety of situations. Medical, legal, office, social and administrative work segments all require secretarial staff. An intensive course should give you a good beginning.
Employment opportunities are both with the government and with private firms, schools, institutions, NGOs, multinational firms, international organizations, etc.
In the Government
The recruitment for middle and subordinate level posts of all the departments of the government of India all over the country is made by Staff Selection Commissions. The posts include that of clerks, assistants, inspectors of income tax, excise, customs, sub- inspector of police, CBI and a host of other posts. The number of vacancies vary from year to year.
Assistant Grade Examination- This examination fills up posts of Grade 4 (Assistant) of General cadre of Indian Foreign Service, Grade 4 (Assistant) Railway Board Secretariat Service, Assistant Grade of the Armed Forces Headquarters Civil Service, Assistant Grade of the Central Secretariat Service, Assistants in other departmental organisations, Government institutions and attached offices.
Eligibility- Graduation. Age - 20-25 Years
Selection examination- 3 attempts are allowed. Written exam has 2 parts-Preliminary and Mains.The prelim exam is objective and has is a screening test.It has Reasoning, Maths, Language( Hindi& English) and General Knowledge. The main exam is of the conventional type in English and Maths.
Stenographers Examination- Stenographers in Grade 'C' are selected for the above-mentioned depart-ments. The eligibility is Class X. Age must be 18-20 years. The examination has a paper of the objective type in General English, General Awareness and in Essay, Shorthand test in Hindi/ English. Stenographers in Grade 'D' are appointed to Ministries and attached offices of the Government and to subordinate offices of the Government in various states/ union territories, etc and Delhi administration. The age limit for this exam is 25 years and the other eligibility is same as in the Grade 'C'. The test format also remains the same.
Clerk Grade Examination- Clerks for the ministries and attached offices, subordinate otiices of the Government of India located in various states and posts in Delhi administration, MCD, NDMC are appointed through an examination conducted by the Staff Selection Commission. The eligibility for this grade is matriculation and age specified is 18-25 years. The examination has 2 parts: Part I is a written test od 2 hours which has 4 parts - General Intelligence, English Language, Numerical Aptitude, General Awareness. Passing in all the 4 parts is essential. The second test of typewriting in both English and Hindi. The speed should be 30 wpm in English and 25 wpm in Hindi.
In the Private sector
Secretarial training is conducted by a number of local vocational training institutes. Students may opt to graduate and with the degree programme and may pursue computer courses related to office work. Foreign languages add to the prospects of employability.