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Receptionist

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

  • Avg. Salary $34,820.00
  • Avg. Wage $20.93
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook above avg
  • Employed 22,200
  • In Demand Lower
Also Known As

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

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Receptionists (1414.1) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Receptionists and Switchboard Operators (B514) 
  • 2011 NOC: Receptionists (1414) 
  • 2016 NOC: Receptionists (1414) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

50%
50%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Interest Codes
The Receptionist is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Receptionists
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 Mar 31, 2019

Duties vary from one position to another. In general, receptionists greet people entering offices, hospitals, and other establishments. They answer questions and direct visitors to appropriate people or services. They also:

  • Answer, screen, and forward telephone calls
  • Greet customers, clients, and vendors
  • 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, and proofreading
  • Set up rooms for activities such as meetings and appointments
  • Send and receive documents electronically
  • Maintain a welcoming and tidy waiting area
  • Order waiting room supplies such as coffee, bottled water, and magazines

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 Mar 31, 2019

Many receptionists work regular office hours. Evening and weekend work is required in hospitals and other establishments that are open for extended hours.

Receptionists interact with people from diverse backgrounds. Working with people and answering telephones can be hectic and stressful, especially when callers or customers are persistent or rude.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 31, 2019

Receptionists need:

  • A friendly, outgoing personality
  • Discretion and professionalism
  • Tact and a calm demeanour under stress
  • Listening and communication skills and exceptional telephone manners
  • Organizational skills
  • The ability to multitask
  • A working knowledge of their organization
  • Interpersonal skills
  • A genuine interest in people and helping others
  • Self-motivation and initiative
Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2019

Receptionists need computer experience and knowledge of general office procedures. 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 in 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 - Red Deer

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 South

College of New Caledonia

Mount Royal University

NorQuest College

Red River College

Robertson College - Calgary

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.

Certification Requirements
Updated Mar 31, 2019

There is currently no provincial legislation regulating this occupation in Alberta.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 31, 2019

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 [pdf] in this occupation is 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 (when people leave existing positions)
  • Occupational growth (when new positions are created)
  • Size of the occupation

In Alberta, the B514: Receptionists and Switchboard Operators occupational group is expected to have an above-average annual growth of 2.5% from 2016 to 2020. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 605 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

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

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 31, 2019

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

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 $15.00 $26.55 $18.44 $17.55
Overall $15.00 $30.00 $20.93 $20.00
Top $15.50 $34.00 $23.45 $22.50

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.

A: High Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

High Reliability, represents a CV of less than or equal to 6.00% and 30 survey observations and/or represents 50% or more of all estimated employment for the occupation.


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

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

50%
50%)

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

12%
12%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

3%
3%

Vacancy Rate

2%
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Clerical and Administrative Support

Updated Mar 31, 2019. 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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