Local government administrative assistant

administrative officer clerical officer customer service assistant support officer

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Jobs forecast

This information is supplied by LMI For All, where data is currently available for Scotland.

What's it like?

You would support the teams who provide vital public services like schools, child protection and street cleaning. You’d make sure the office runs smoothly. You’d answer people’s enquiries and give them information about the services.

You could work with managers and teams in any local council department, for example housing, education, social services, or planning.

Depending on the department you work for, you could:

  • Deal with enquiries by phone, in writing or in person
  • Look up information on a computer system
  • File and photocopy documents
  • Produce and send letters
  • Sort, record and distribute mail
  • Deal with cash and payments
  • Update computerised and clerical records.

You might act as a secretary or personal assistant (PA) to a manager or department and work with staff in other departments.

Working conditions


In a full-time job you would usually work 37 hours a week, Monday to Friday. Part-time and temporary work are often available.


The work is mainly office-based. In some departments you may spend some of your time handling enquiries at a counter or reception desk.

UK employment status



Self employed

People behind the job

Meet real people who’ve done this job – hear their stories and the path they took to get there.

Here are some of the skills that people in this job would be most likely to have:

  • Communicating with people
  • Working as part of a team
  • Helping customers
  • Being tactful
  • Communicating ideas through writing
  • Accuracy
  • Using computers
  • Planning and organising

Build your skills

Your skills can help you choose the career that’s right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at what are my skills?

Keep track of your skills in your account and find the jobs, opportunities and courses that suit you.

Click here to view / add your skills

Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Foundation Apprenticeships

Choosing a Foundation Apprenticeship as one of your subjects in S5 and S6 can help you get a head start with this type of job.

You'll get an SCQF level 6 qualification (the same level as a Higher) plus valuable work placement experience and skills you can't learn in a classroom.

Interested? Find out what's on offer at your school on Apprenticeships.scot.


You don't always need formal qualifications to enter this job but some employers ask for National 4/5s or occasionally Highers.

A course in administration or business may be helpful at National Certificate (SCQF level 4), National Qualification (SCQF level 4) or Higher National Certificate (SCQF level 7).

Useful subjects

  • English (required by most employers and courses)
  • Maths
  • Business subjects
  • ICT subjects
  • Administrative subjects

Helpful to have

It is possible to gain work-based qualifications such as a Scottish Vocational Qualification in business and administration (SVQ level 3/4/5).