Calling all Receptionists – yes all of you! We know how undervalued your role is and how insignificant you can sometimes feel. How often have you heard the phrase ‘just the receptionist’? Anybody who utters these words clearly doesn't understand the vital role you play within your organisation. But it’s time everyone else knew just how hard you work. We are going to tell the world just what you achieve on a daily basis, and maybe then they’ll sit up and take notice.
Perhaps you've stumbled across this article because you are thinking of training to become a receptionist? Have a good read of this and then decide whether it’s the right role for you first. So, here we go… these are just some of the tasks performed by the humble receptionist on a day to day basis.
Pillar to Post
Dealing with incoming post used to be a relatively simple task. Not anymore! With the advent of technology post is not just restricted to physical letters. Along with the usual post (of which there can be huge volumes!) come faxes and emails. The amount of communication that ends up on a receptionist’s desk is simply overwhelming so it takes an extremely efficient and thorough person to be able to handle it without paper flying everywhere. Then there is the outgoing post. Offices still generate a surprising amount of letters and each of these needs to be weighed, measured, franked and posted. All before the postman arrives.
A receptionist worth their salt will be able to operate the most complicated switchboard with their eyes shut. This is no mean feat and takes a lot of training. Transferring calls, putting people on hold, answering general inquiries… it’s a juggling act that only the most on the ball receptionist can handle. One receptionist can be dealing with three or more phone calls at any one time and there’s no margin for error – press the wrong button and you risk cutting off a very important client (or your boss!).
Any receptionist must be totally up to speed with all things computerized. This means dealing with and filing emails efficiently, being really up to speed with the internet and the company’s online filing system.
Filing Anything But Nails!
And on the subject of filing… it’s a minefield with the advent of computers too. Paper files and online files must be kept beautifully organised and locked away if they are confidential.
A Friendly Face
Receptionists must learn the rather tricky art of smiling and looking calm even a midst a storm. The person that has just walked through the door needs greeting politely and efficiently so whatever task that was being managed before needs putting down straight away.
A receptionist must possess the power to multitask as if it was an Olympic sport! So next time you walk into an office and are greeted by a calm-looking, friendly receptionist be under no illusion – they will be inundated with work but they still understand the importance of putting you first.