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Occupational Profile

Receptionist

Receptionists provide a vital link between customers or clients and an organization's staff and services.

  • Avg. Salary $33,401.00
  • Avg. Wage $18.94
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook Up
  • Employed 24,400
  • In Demand Lower
Also Known As

Administrative Support Personnel, Dental Office Receptionist, Medical Office Receptionist, Office Personnel, Veterinary Office Receptionist

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

56%
56%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
NOC & Interest Codes
The Receptionist is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Receptionists
NOC code: 1414.1
SOCIAL

Interest in speaking to greet people and provide information in person and by phone

METHODICAL

Interest in compiling information to schedule appointments for employers; may perform clerical duties such as filing, and collecting and distributing mail and messages; may maintain security access lists

directive

Interest in handling equipment such as telephones and computers; and in directing clients and customers to appropriate contacts and services; and may maintain front desk security

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Dec 14, 2016

Duties vary from one position to another, but in general, receptionists:

  • greet people entering offices, hospitals and other establishments, answer questions and direct visitors to appropriate people or services
  • answer, screen and forward telephone calls
  • take messages and provide information
  • schedule appointments and meetings using paper and electronic calendars
  • maintain a current record of staff members' whereabouts
  • accept messenger and courier deliveries
  • perform other clerical duties such as word processing, compiling and recording data, maintaining files and inventories, operating office equipment, sorting mail, stuffing envelopes or proofreading.

In hospitals, medical clinics and veterinary clinics, receptionists also obtain information from patients or animal owners, direct people to the appropriate treatment areas and keep admission records.

Working Conditions
Updated Dec 14, 2016

Many receptionists work regular office hours. Evening and weekend work is required in hospitals and other establishments that are open for extended hours. Working with people and answering telephones can be hectic and stressful.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Dec 14, 2016

Receptionists need the following characteristics:

  • good verbal and written communication skills
  • good listening skills
  • a friendly, outgoing personality
  • tact and the ability to stay calm during busy periods and when callers are persistent or rude
  • good organizational skills
  • the ability to multi-task
  • a genuine interest in people and in helping others
  • the desire and ability to work with little supervision when dealing with routine matters.
Educational Requirements
Updated Dec 14, 2016

Receptionists need computer experience and knowledge of general office procedures and exceptional telephone manners. Specific educational requirements vary a great deal depending on the employer. Most employers prefer to hire applicants who have at least a high school diploma and related training or experience dealing with the public.

In Alberta, many colleges, technical schools and private vocational schools offer programs related to office administration.


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Bredin College of Business and Health Care - Calgary

Bredin College of Business and Health Care - Edmonton

Bredin College of Business and Health Care - Spruce Grove

British Columbia Institute of Technology

Business IQ Training

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Calgary City Centre

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Calgary North

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Calgary South

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton City Centre

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton North

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton South

CDI College of Business, Technology and Health Care - Edmonton West

College of New Caledonia - Prince George

Red River College - Winnipeg

Reeves College - Calgary City Centre

Reeves College - Calgary North

Reeves College - Edmonton

Reeves College - Lethbridge

Reeves College - Lloydminster

Robertson College - Calgary NW

Robertson College - Edmonton

Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

Training Inc. - Lethbridge

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Dec 14, 2016

Above-average occupational growth is expected in Alberta for 2016 to 2020. Job openings are a result of employment turnover and newly created positions.

Receptionists are employed in:

  • banks
  • schools, universities and colleges
  • professional office environments, such as law and accounting firms
  • government departments
  • medical, dental and health and wellness offices and clinics
  • hospitals
  • veterinary clinics and animal hospitals
  • real estate and insurance offices
  • oil and gas industry firms
  • small and large businesses.

Some positions are part time.

Automated office equipment such as computers has not changed the nature of the work (communication with people), but increasing use of voice mail and email in many offices may reduce the number of jobs in which telephone answering is a major component of the work.

Receptionists are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 1414: Receptionists. In Alberta, 76% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions that never existed before)
  • size of the occupation.

Over 24,200 Albertans are employed in the Receptionists and switchboard operators occupational group. This group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2.0% from 2016 to 2020. As a result, 605 new positions are forecast to be created each year, in addition to job openings created by employment turnover. Note: As receptionists form only a part of this larger occupational group, only some of these newly created positions will be for receptionists.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years.

Wage & Salary
Updated Dec 14, 2016

Salaries vary a great deal depending on the receptionist's qualifications and the responsibilities involved.

Receptionists
NOC code: 1414

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $12.00 $24.00 $16.89 $16.00
Overall $13.60 $26.40 $18.94 $18.00
Top $14.73 $31.47 $21.94 $21.03

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Oil & Gas Extraction
Public Administration
Utilities
Construction
Manufacturing
Wholesale Trade
Educational Services
Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
Health Care & Social Assistance
ALBERTA, ALL INDUSTRIES
Transportation and Warehousing
Finance, Insurance, Real Estate, Leasing
Accommodation & Food Services
Business, Building and Other Support Services (aka Management, Administrative, and other Services)
Retail Trade
Other Services (Repair, Personal Services and Related)

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

56%
56%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

19%
19%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

3%
3%

2015 Vacancy Rate

N/A
Related High School Subjects
  • English Language Arts
  • Business, Administration, Finance and IT
    • Information Processing
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Clerical and Administrative Support

Updated Mar 19, 2016. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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