This client applied for the role of EA to Dean & Head of School in the tertiary sector and gained a job interview. During the job interview, the selection panel commented on how highly impressed they all were with the written application. A total of five pages in cover letter format was developed to address selection criteria listed under Essential and Desirable sections. When I develop selection criteria documents for tertiary sector roles, the maximum page length limit I adhere to is five pages; very often I develop less, this all depends on how many criteria require addressing. The most number of criteria I have addressed for a tertiary sector role numbered 17 across both the Essential and Desirable sections – a five page document was also developed for this application. When addressing criteria listed in the Desirable section, a short paragraph will suffice; more effort and content needs to developed for the criteria listed in the Essential section. Following are part excerpts from three of the criteria in the Essential section, and a full length example from one of the criteria in the Desirable section.

ESSENTIAL:

Demonstrated experience in high level executive administration in a professional environment.

I have 15 years’ experience in providing high level comprehensive executive administrative, secretarial, and operational support to senior, executive, director and Board level personnel. I have managed the maintained the diaries and emails for up to three executive level staff concurrently. In this regard, I used my well-developed organisation and prioritisation skills to channel and filter a large volume of emails on a daily basis from our staff (over 16,000) nationally and internationally, and a diverse range of external stakeholders to decide relevance and importance for forwarding to the executives. In planning and organising events, dependent on the event, I commenced the planning process a year in advance to ensure all logistical and operational components involved with the events were completed by stipulated time frames. The processing of financial document statements was a timely process, and a high level of accuracy and strict attention to detail was paramount. Credit card processing of expenditure ranged between $80 and $100k each monthly billing cycle. I entered information accurately in the system in order for it to be accepted, and I ensured processing was completed by the mandated deadline to avoid incurring a 10% fee.

Highly developed verbal and written communication skills, including demonstrated experience in the preparation of communications for a variety of audiences, briefing papers, reports and submissions with a particular emphasis on attention to detail.

I have highly developed written communication skills demonstrated through the following selected examples in my current role:

– Drafting standard letters (in line with the company’s template) in response to incoming correspondence such as requests for sponsorship, meetings and to buy certain services.

– Drafting initial emails on behalf of the Managing Director to amend and approve and to then forward to staff. Content contained in the emails included organisational changes, procedural changes, new IT updates, human resource-related information, and WH&S incidents.

– Preparing speeches (spanning up to ten pages in length) for a variety of audiences across several business units nationwide. Content prepared in speeches was tailored to suit the audience and situation.

– Preparing minutes and agendas for various meetings: quarterly Board of Directors’ meetings; monthly executive team meetings; daily team meetings which were attended by senior and middle management staff, and other internal stakeholders such as heads of departments. Minutes for executive team meetings contained up to four pages of action items; and with minutes for those held every three months, they comprised up to 20 pages of documented action items.

High level skills in computing including word processing, spread sheets, email, diary management, presentations, wikis, information management, and other contemporary office technology.

My specific skills in utilising a wide range of software programs in my current role follow:

– Microsoft Word was used to create correspondence such as memos for dissemination to internal staff and letters to clients and other external stakeholders. I prepared and disseminated mail merges to clients (up to 500 on particular mail outs). I also used Word to prepare itineraries for functions. I incorporated features such as the insertion of tables and columns and graphics into documents.

– Microsoft Excel was used as a database to manage functions; I created an individual spreadsheet for each function, up to 30 annually. Formulas were incorporated to monitor the number of acceptances and rejections to each function.

– Microsoft PowerPoint was used to prepare a wide range of presentations for internal meetings, external events, and client meetings. A company-wide template was used to prepare presentations; up to 40 slides were created with content incorporated as well as hyperlinks and graphics.

– Microsoft Outlook’s various functions were used extensively, including the calendar, address book, tasks, reminders, to receive incoming emails and compile outgoing emails to clients and stakeholders.

– Financial management software (JD Edwards) was used to raise purchase orders for payment of invoices.

– Wikipedia was used to research information on particular clients and products; and countries and their protocols, which was of importance when organising travel.

– Apple products such as iPad and iPhone were used extensively throughout the course of any given day to read and respond to emails, to schedule and re-schedule dates in calendars, and to upgrade travel bookings.

DESIRABLE:

Familiarity with University guidelines and procedures.

In preparing this application, I conducted research using the Internet to familiarise myself with UTAS’ policies, procedures and guidelines. UTAS’ policy and delegations cover several categories and sub-categories within each encompassing numerous documents. They include Governance; Commercial Services & Development; Communication, Events, Marketing & Development; Financial Services; Human Resources; IT Services; Learning & Teaching; Office of the Vice-Chancellor; Research; Research Training; Risk & Quality; Service & Project Delivery; Student & Academic Administration; Student Support; and WH&S.

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Cheers,

Annie Cerone