what is a receptionist?
As a receptionist, you play an essential role in the organisation you work for. You greet visitors, answer phone calls, and perform a variety of administrative tasks. You are the front face of your organisation and responsible for creating a positive first impression on behalf of your employer.
Your role is not limited to answering calls and directing visitors; you also manage the reception area, ensuring it is clean and organised. You assist in scheduling appointments, managing calendars, and maintaining important documents. You may also help with basic bookkeeping and managing office supplies. You work with computers and office software, so an aptitude for working with those systems helps you in your day-to-day work.
As a receptionist, you are professional and courteous, and you have good communication skills. You are often the first point of contact for clients, vendors, and customers, and being well-spoken and presentable, helps you to deliver the right message. You work under pressure at times, multitask, and handle difficult situations.
Does a career as a receptionist appeal to your organisational side? Are you a good communicator? If so, keep reading to find out what skills and competencies will help you thrive in this profession.receptionist roles
average receptionist salary
According to Payscale, the average salary of a receptionist in India is roughly ₹186,000 per year. This is mostly base salary, though some roles may include bonuses. Entry-level receptionists in the country tend to start out earning a little under ₹100,000 per year. Meanwhile, the highest-earning receptionists can earn as much as ₹393,000 per year.
factors that affect a receptionist's pay
One of the most significant factors affecting your pay as a receptionist in India is the industry in which you work. Industries such as healthcare, legal, and finance generally pay receptionists more than those in other industries.
The level of experience and education you attain is another crucial factor in determining your potential pay. Receptionists with more years of experience and higher levels of education often command higher salaries. The same is true of receptionists with specialised training or certifications.
The location of the organisation you work for also plays a role here. Working in metropolitan areas like Mumbai, Delhi, and Bangalore typically earns more than the same role working in smaller cities or rural areas.
types of receptionist
Your fundamental role as a receptionist will remain the same regardless of where you work. However, there are different types of receptionists, each with a unique set of responsibilities. Below are some of the most common types of receptionist positions:
- front desk receptionist: as a front desk receptionist, you are responsible for welcoming visitors and answering phone calls. You often handle basic administrative tasks like scheduling appointments and managing office supplies. If the organisation receives in-person visitors, you may also be responsible for directing them to the appropriate person or department.
- medical receptionist: in this role, you fill a specialised role in a healthcare setting. Such a setting might be a hospital, a clinic, or a private practice. You are responsible for greeting patients, scheduling appointments, and handling patient paperwork. You may also assist with insurance claims and help with medical billing.
- hotel receptionist: hotel receptionists are responsible for welcoming guests, checking them in and out, and providing them with information about the hotel. In this role, you may also help guests with restaurant reservations, transportation, and other requests.
- corporate receptionist: as a corporate receptionist, you are responsible for managing the reception area of a corporate office. You greet visitors, manage phone calls, and schedule appointments. You handle administrative tasks such as managing office supplies and coordinating meetings.
- educational receptionist: being an educational receptionist, you have a specialised role in educational institutions. Such institutions include schools and universities.
working as a receptionist
The specific duties of a receptionist include the following:
receptionist job description
What does a receptionist do? The specific duties of a receptionist include:
- greeting visitors: you are often the first person a visitor sees when entering an office, hotel or other organisation you work for. You greet visitors warmly and make them feel welcome, answer basic questions and direct visitors to the appropriate person or department.
- answering phone calls: you are responsible for answering incoming phone calls and directing them to the appropriate person or department. You use a polite and professional tone on the phone and are able to handle a high volume of calls throughout the day.
- basic bookkeeping: you may be responsible for basic bookkeeping, including managing petty cash, recording expenses, and maintaining financial records. You are detail-oriented when managing financial information to ensure there are no mistakes in your work.
- administrative work: you may also be responsible for performing a variety of administrative tasks, such as data entry, creating reports, and managing office supplies.
As a receptionist, your work environment will typically be an office or office-like environment. You often serve as the first point of contact, both for in-person visitors and people calling on the phone. Because of this, your desk may be a public-facing desk that visitors approach when they arrive. Depending on the organisation, you may have to handle a high volume of phone calls, emails, and visitors. You may work in a busy and noisy area, such as a hospital or airport, or a quiet and calm environment, such as a corporate office.
who are your colleagues?
You will typically work as part of a larger team, and your colleagues can vary depending on the organisation and industry you work in. One of your more immediate colleagues will likely be other administrative assistants and executive assistants. These work closely with receptionists and provide support in performing administrative tasks. They may assist with scheduling appointments, managing calendars, and preparing documents.
If the organisation you work for deals directly with customers, you also work closely with customer service representatives on the handling of complaints and other inquiries and with inside sales representatives. For larger organisations, there may be multiple receptionists, and these will also form your immediate colleagues.
Most receptionists in India work full-time, with regular business hours from Monday to Friday. The typical work schedule for a receptionist is from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, although some organisations may require their receptionists to work earlier or later shifts depending on their needs. While most receptionist jobs are full-time, part-time work is available, though the specific hours would be negotiated with your employer.
Your work schedule can also be affected by the volume of work you are required to manage. If you are working in a busy organisation, you may be required to work longer hours or manage a higher volume of phone calls and visitors. On the other hand, if you work in a less busy organisation you may have a lighter workload that requires fewer hours to get through.
The job outlook for receptionists in India is positive, with strong demand for skilled receptionists across various industries. As India's economy continues to grow, the need for receptionists in various industries is also increasing. This is a role that is commonplace in most industries and business types, so any economic growth is likely to lead to an increase in demand for this profession.
You can be employed in a wide range of industries, including healthcare, hospitality, legal, finance, and corporate offices. The demand for your skills is particularly high in industries that prioritise customer service and need to manage a high volume of visitors and phone calls.
advantages of finding a receptionist job through randstad
Finding your receptionist job through Randstad provides important advantages such as:
- a wide variety of training and development opportunities
- an experienced contact person to provide help if needed
- a range of opportunities in your area
- get paid on a monthly basis
- temporary and permanent contracts
Want a permanent contract? A temporary job as a receptionist is often a stepping stone to an attractive permanent job. Every year, thousands of people earn a permanent contract with great employers thanks to a temporary job found through Randstad. What's more, many companies recruit their permanent employees through Randstad too!
education and skills
Formal academic qualifications are not always required to become a receptionist in India, though employers generally prefer candidates with a high school diploma or equivalent. This is very much specific to the employer, however. Some organisations may require a degree or diploma in a relevant field depending on the industry and level of responsibilities of the receptionist role.
While formal qualifications may not be essential, they will likely help you when applying for a position. Having a degree, in particular, will be useful if you decide to move on from being a receptionist and wish to move into a more senior role.
receptionist skills and competencies
Some of the qualities of a receptionist include:
- communication skills: you use your communication skills, both verbal and written, to interact with clients, colleagues, and visitors. You are able to listen actively, communicate effectively, and convey information in a professional and clear manner. This ensures visitors are directed where they need to go, and messages reach their intended destination.
- organisational skills: your organisational skills enable you to manage your workload effectively. You are able to manage your time efficiently, prioritise tasks, and multitask effectively.
- professionalism: you maintain a professional demeanour at all times in your role as a first point of contact. You dress appropriately, communicate effectively, and handle visitors and colleagues with respect and courtesy.
- flexibility: to fulfil your role effectively, you are flexible and adaptable to changes in your workload and schedule. You are able to handle unexpected tasks, changes in schedules, and last-minute requests.
FAQs about working as a receptionist
Here, you will find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about the profession of a receptionist.
what do receptionists do?
A receptionist's duties and responsibilities include greeting visitors and helping them get where they need to go. This can mean greeting a visitor in person and giving them directions or answering a phone call and directing the call to the right person.
is receptionist a stressful job?
Every person is different, of course, but some receptionist jobs will be more stressful than others. For example, working for a large organisation that is constantly busy will result in much more work for a receptionist, which in turn means a more stressful environment. Being a receptionist requires a level of being able to handle stress no matter the specifics of the job, however.
do receptionists need to be smartly dressed?
Receptionists are often the first representative of a business that a visitor encounters. For that reason, they are generally expected to be professional and smartly dressed at all times.
what is the salary for a front desk receptionist?
The average salary for a receptionist in India is approximately ₹186,000 per year. For entry-level positions, salaries tend to start at around ₹100,000, though there is the potential to earn closer to ₹400,000 per year.
what is the most essential skill for a receptionist?
To be a successful receptionist, the most essential skill is communication. In this role, you need to listen to others, clearly communicate ideas and be able to pass on information in an easy-to-understand manner in person, over the phone and through email.
how do I apply for a receptionist vacancy?
Applying for a receptionist job is easy: create a Randstad profile and search our job offers for vacancies in your area. Then simply send us your CV and cover letter. Need help with your application? Check out all our job search tips here!