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Office Assistant interview questions and answers

This Office Assistant interview profile brings together a snapshot of what to look for in candidates with a balanced sample of suitable interview questions.

Christine Del Castillo
Christine Del Castillo

Former Community Manager at Workable specialized in employee experience, talent brands and our event series, Workable Ideas.

office assistant interview questions

10 good office assistant interview questions

  1. What interests you about working in an administrative position at this company?
  2. What kinds of administrative projects do you like to work on?
  3. What administrative projects are less interesting for you? How do you overcome your disinterest in order to do a good job?
  4. How would you rate your computer skills?
  5. Describe your experience with calendar management.
  6. What kinds of documents have you made from scratch using MS Office programs?
  7. What is your experience with data entry?
  8. How do you ensure accuracy in routine tasks such as processing expenses and preparing reports?
  9. If you support multiple people at one company, how do you decide which projects to work on first?
  10. Have you ever been on a team with a difficult coworker? How did you handle it?

Here are 10 essential interview questions and sample answers to help identify the best candidates for this role.

1. What interests you about working in an administrative position at this company?

This question helps to gauge the candidate’s motivation and interest in the role and the company.

Sample answer:

“I’m drawn to this role because the company has a reputation for innovation and growth. I believe my administrative skills can contribute to the team’s efficiency and help the company reach its objectives.”

2. What kinds of administrative projects do you like to work on?

This question assesses the candidate’s preferences and strengths in administrative tasks.

Sample answer:

“I enjoy projects that require problem-solving and organization, such as event planning or implementing new filing systems.”

3. What administrative projects are less interesting for you? How do you overcome your disinterest in order to do a good job?

This question evaluates the candidate’s self-awareness and ability to maintain productivity even when tasks are not inherently interesting.

Sample answer:

“I find repetitive data entry tasks less engaging. However, I overcome this by setting mini-goals and taking short breaks to maintain focus and accuracy.”

4. How would you rate your computer skills?

This question aims to understand the candidate’s proficiency in using computer software essential for the role.

Sample answer:

“I would rate my computer skills as advanced. I’m proficient in MS Office Suite and have experience with project management software like Asana.”

5. Describe your experience with calendar management.

This question assesses the candidate’s organizational skills and ability to manage time effectively.

Sample answer:

“I have experience managing multiple calendars for executives, coordinating meetings, and setting reminders for important deadlines.”

6. What kinds of documents have you made from scratch using MS Office programs?

This question evaluates the candidate’s ability to create various types of documents using office software.

Sample answer:

“I’ve created presentations in PowerPoint, spreadsheets in Excel for budget tracking, and reports in Word.”

7. What is your experience with data entry?

This question assesses the candidate’s experience and accuracy in data entry tasks.

Sample answer:

“I have two years of experience in data entry, maintaining a 99% accuracy rate throughout.”

8. How do you ensure accuracy in routine tasks such as processing expenses and preparing reports?

This question evaluates the candidate’s attention to detail and organizational skills.

Sample answer:

“I double-check all entries and cross-reference them with original documents. I also use templates to ensure consistency in reports.”

9. If you support multiple people at one company, how do you decide which projects to work on first?

This question tests the candidate’s ability to prioritize tasks effectively.

Sample answer:

“I prioritize tasks based on deadlines and the urgency of the project, while also considering the importance of each task to the overall company goals.”

10. Have you ever been on a team with a difficult coworker? How did you handle it?

This question assesses the candidate’s interpersonal skills and ability to work in a team environment.

Sample answer:

“Yes, I had a coworker who was often negative. I chose to focus on my tasks and maintain a professional attitude, while also trying to understand their perspective.”

What does a good office assistant candidate look like?

A strong Office Assistant candidate should possess excellent organizational skills, be proficient in office software, and have strong communication abilities. They should be able to multitask effectively, maintain a high level of accuracy, and work well in a team environment.

Red flags

Be cautious of candidates who lack attention to detail, have poor communication skills, or seem disinterested in routine tasks. These could be indicators of a poor fit for an Office Assistant role.



Office Assistant Interview Questions

Office Assistants are found in all types of industries. This is usually an entry-level position with wide-ranging support duties. Great office assistants are curious, diligent and have the attitude that no job is too small.

Some tasks, such as data entry, report preparation, calendar management require proficiency with workplace software such as Microsoft Office. Use interviews as an opportunity to evaluate these skills. Some employers may even include a short skills test in the interview process. If there is a specific skill that you need, such as travel coordination, be sure to add questions about that to this list.

Related: How to attract and hire entry-level employees 

The following open-ended and situational interview questions will encourage your candidates to speak at length about their relevant experience. They will also help you get a sense of their interpersonal skills, such as how well they “manage up”, how well they can work on a team, and what motivates them as employees. Your most promising candidates will be able to articulate what interests the about your company, and will contribute several prepared and spontaneous questions of their own to the conversation.

Let’s summarize some of the questions and add a few more divided into specific types.

Operational and Situational questions

  • What interests you about working in an administrative position at this company?
  • What kinds of administrative projects do you like to work on?
  • What administrative projects are less interesting for you? How do you overcome your disinterest in order to do a good job?
  • How would you rate your computer skills?
  • Describe your experience with calendar management.
  • What kinds of documents have you made from scratch using MS Office programs?
  • What is your experience with data entry?
  • How do you ensure accuracy in routine tasks such as processing expenses and preparing reports?
  • If you support multiple people at one company, how do you decide which projects to work on first?
  • Have you ever been on a team with a difficult coworker? How did you handle it?
  • Describe a time you worked with a team to meet a common goal. What was your role?
  • Describe a time you suggested a way to save time, lower costs, or increase revenue.
  • What does “managing up” mean to you? In what ways have you done that?
  • Some of this work can be repetitive. What motivates you to excel in this role?

Frequently asked questions

Ready to fine-tune this interview kit?
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