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April 14, 2011
Salaries for Administrative Professionals Expected to Rise This Year
While salaries took a hit last year due to the recession, this year most salaries in the administrative profession are showing a modest increase, according to the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP).

However, those working in the areas of data entry, office services, and reception are experiencing an average 1 percent decrease, according to the IAAP Benchmarking Survey, released as part of IAAP’s Administrative Professionals Week April 24-30, with Administrative Professionals Day on Wednesday, April 27.

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The survey was conducted during the first quarter of 2011 and consisted of 3,376 professional, employed members of IAAP.

While experts report the economy is recovering, only 9 percent of administrative professionals believe they'll see an improvement in their salaries and benefits this year. In the recent IAAP survey, respondents were asked about cuts their company implemented on its workforce and if the coming year would be better. Of the 3,376 office workers that responded, 44 percent said employees' salaries were frozen, with 10 percent noting that salaries were cut.

Health benefits also hit the chopping block. Thirty-six percent of employees saw health benefits affected with 14 percent who saw their health benefits eliminated and another 12 percent who had to pitch in more of their paycheck to pay for benefits. Other benefits cut included: retirement plan, 12 percent; bonus pay, 14 percent. Even holiday parties were eliminated, with 36 percent reporting cancellation of these events.

What the survey also revealed is that the majority of “admins” (76 percent) aren't too hopeful that the financial climate in their offices will improve. Respondents believe their benefits and salaries will either remain the same (45 percent) or be cut further (22 percent). Only 9 percent believe prerecession salaries and benefits will be reinstated.

Other compensation-related "Fast Facts" cited by IAAP include:

  • $40,030—Average 2008 annual earnings of U.S. executive secretaries and administrative assistants (U.S. Department of Labor).
  • 2.5 percent—Expected average salary increase for an administrative assistant in 2011 (OfficeTeam 2011 Salary Guide).
  • 1.4 percent—Expected average salary increase of an entry-level administrative assistant (OfficeTeam 2011 Salary Guide)
Today, IAAP reports there are more than 4.1 million secretaries and administrative assistants working in the United States, according to U.S. Department of Labor statistics, and 8.9 million people working in various administrative support roles. More than 475,000 administrative professionals are employed in Canada.
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