Receptionist Job Description, Key Duties and Responsibilities

By | May 28, 2024
Receptionist Job Description
Receptionists provide administrative support for the smooth operation of organizations.

This post provides complete information on the job description of a receptionist, including the key duties, tasks, and responsibilities they typically perform.

What Does a Receptionist Do?

A receptionist refers to an employee who takes an office or administrative support position.

Depending on the nature of the organization, receptionist job description varies. For instance, receptionists in hospitals and doctors’ offices may gather patients’ personal information and direct patients to the waiting room, while the role of some may entail handling of billing and insurance payments.

Receptionists in beauty or hair salons schedule appointments and serve as cashier, and can also direct clients to the hairstylist.

Receptionists are usually the first employee of an organization a visitor will come in contact with and as such they are expected to give a good first impression of the organization as this can affect its success.

The duties of a receptionist are usually performed in the waiting area of the firm. This could be the front desk or the lobby.

The title “receptionist” is attributed to anybody an organization employs to receive visitors and answer phone calls.

The term Front Desk is used for an administrative department where a receptionist’s duties can also include credit checks, reservations, cashier work, guest registration, and mail and message service. Such receptionists can be referred to front desk clerks.

Receptionist Job Description Example/Sample/Template

The duties, tasks, and responsibilities of a receptionist are given in the job description example below:

  • Provide answers to visitors’ inquiries about the company, its products or services
  • Coordinate activities around the front desk/reception premise
  • Direct visitors and clients/customers to their desired destinations in the premise
  • Sort and handle out mail messages whether incoming or outgoing
  • Answer incoming calls on multi-line telephones
  • File and keep record of activities in the office for easy retrieval and review when due, and sending to the relevant department personnel
  • Perform keyboarding/data entry functions
  • Schedule and confirm appointments
  • Maintain company’s event calendars. He or she keeps in records all events to hold in the organization and notifies respective department when due
  • Copy, file, and maintain paper or records and electronic documents of visitors
  • Where necessary, inform relevant staff of visitors’ arrivals and/or cancellations of appointments
  • Perform varieties of other administration tasks as directed by manager; this could include faxing, emailing or even assisting other departments that need help
  • Responsible for maintaining clean and safe reception area; keep it tidy at all times
  • May also perform bookkeeping or cashiering and other similar duties
  • May also assume some security guard access control functions. This involves verifying employee identification, issuing visitor pass, and observing and reporting unusual or suspicious persons or activities.

Receptionist Requirements: Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities for Career Success

To be considered for the position of a receptionist, most employers would require the following skills and qualities from applicants:

  • Possession of effective verbal communication skills is a very important prerequisite
  • Microsoft Office Skills: A fair knowledge of the computer and how to use Microsoft Office package is required from receptionists
  • Ability to listen; paying attention to details and following instructions
  • Customer focus: Receptionists must have the ability to understand the needs of a client/visitor
  • Loyalty and trustworthiness: Receptionists must be loyal to their organizations and trustworthy
  • Organizational skills: He/she should be able to arrange his/her work schedule and his/her work environment to ensure efficiency
  • He/she must be able to put up a smiling face always when dealing with clients/visitors
  • He/she must be motivated and enthusiastic at all times
  • Be a team player: Receptionists must be able to work with existing staff for the growth of their organizations
  • Management skills: He/she must have the ability to manage the reception area and maintain order
  • Handle Pressure: He/she must be able to keep up with difficult and insulting visitors
  • Peoples skills: Ability to handle clients and visitors no matter how difficult they seem to be is an important quality a receptionist should have
  • A well-groomed appearance: The receptionist should look good and presentable at all times. Your looks goes a long way in enhancing the image of your organization
  • He/she should display maturity and respect for confidentiality and discretion
  • Possession of phone answering skills
  • Ability to be flexible and multi-tasking – doing several things all at the same time if needed
  • Ability to be calm, courteous, and professional regardless of customers behavior.
  • Taking a pre-employment test: You may be required by some employers to take certain tests like aptitude test and personality test to be hired. Learn about Job Assessment Tests and how to excel in them.

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Links to related receptionist job description posts:

  • Senior Receptionist Job Description: He/she ensures the reception unit of an office runs efficiently. See more.
  • Drug Rehabilitation Receptionist Job Description: He/she works in rehab clinics, helping people affected with addictions. See more.
  • Legal Receptionist Job Description: He/she is an important member of a law firm. See more.
  • Hotel Receptionist Job Description: He/she ensure hotel guests get a warm welcome. See more.
  • Hair Salon Receptionist Job Description: He/she attends to clients coming to a salon. See more.
  • Medical Office Receptionist Job Description: He/she works in the front desk section of a medical center. See more.
  • Veterinary Receptionist Job Description: He/she combines basic knowledge of veterinary and front desk duties. See more.
  • Spa Receptionist Job Description: He/she warmly receives customers to a spa. See more.
  • Restaurant Receptionist Job Description: He/she is the first person you will meet when you walk into a restaurant. See more.
  • Dental Office Receptionist Job Description: He/she works in a dental office. See more:
  • Clinic Receptionist Job Description: He/she has the responsibility to welcome patients and visitors to the clinic. See more.

Receptionist Resources

To help in making you a better receptionist and taking your career to the top, here are useful resources you can access:

Professional Organizations

The National Association of Professional Receptionists The Association promotes the value of a professional receptionist, sSets standards for professionalism through certification, etc. National Customer Service Association The Association equips its members with the right information and skills to be effective in customer relationships.

Useful Blogs

Myreceptionist Provides lots of customer service and receptionist topics to help you improve your skills and knowledge. Beyond the Reception Desk Provides resources on receptionists' training, telephone techniques, confidentiality, communication skills, and more.

Helpful Books

The New Receptionist: An essential guide to the professional workplace This book can help you to go from receptionist to CEO. The Receptionist Handbook A no-nonsense guide to being a receptionist that every front desk employee should read. Medical Receptionist Handbook to Success A comprehensive guide for all front desk workers in the healthcare industry.