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office and administration

Major challenges — as well as major opportunities — await office and administration employers in the year ahead, most of them tethered to a key question: Do you continue with a 100 percent remote work strategy, or push for hybrid or fully onsite alternatives?

Public health policy, of course, will partly be responsible for dictating the answer to that question (and employers in some states will enjoy greater liberty and latitude to operate than those in others). But either way, a host of background issues are going to crop up simultaneously — everything from the continuing impact of the Great Resignation to the importance of workplace flexibility, new concerns around mental health, vacancies at the top and more.

Here's what's on tap for office and administration employers in the year ahead.

flexibility remains a make-or-break factor for talent

Resolving the onsite-versus-remote work conundrum, doing so on the right timeline and effectively communicating the decision to workforces at large will continue to be a high-level strategic challenge for many employers in the office and administration space. What's going to be the best approach?

At this point, one thing is absolutely clear: Organizations with existing hiring pain points will place themselves at a considerable disadvantage if they take a hardline or inflexible approach.

Don't believe us? Consider the results of this survey, which found that one out of three employees will simply quit their jobs if their work-from-home arrangement gets nixed in favor of a return-to-office policy. Greater flexibility, in other words, remains paramount for talent in this space. To be successful, forward-looking employers will need to plan and act accordingly.

demographic shifts in the office and administration workforce

Clearly, office and administration employers that don't offer workforce flexibility to talent will stand to lose employees to competitors that do in the year ahead. But what other trends are impacting this business-critical talent pool?

For one, many older office and administration employees are opting to retire rather than return to the office. Plus, these older workers are also far more likely to be reaping the benefits of big-picture macroeconomic factors like the continued strength of the strong stock market, together with soaring home prices.

And if the fact that older workers are tuning in, turning on and opting out doesn't sound like a huge operational challenge for your company, think again. Consider the practical consequences: For example, when these seasoned pros leave, they tend to leave behind key vacancies at (or near) the top of your org chart, too. So it's a safe bet that competition for proven leaders within the office and administration space is going to heat up in the year ahead.

transitioning out of "pandemic bridge jobs"

The Great Resignation is one thing, but as far as attrition within the office and administration workforce is concerned, there's another factor in play. That is, already, a number of office and administration workers are beginning to transition out of what have been dubbed "pandemic bridge jobs" — typically short-term roles that employees signed on for in order to get from point A to point C, secure some much-needed cash and gain on-the-job experience during a moment of broad-based economic uncertainty.

As the economy pushes toward recovery, however, these kinds of positions may begin to lose their luster. Simply put, high-value office and administration talent are going to be on the hunt for something better: namely, longer-term, flexible and meaningful opportunities.

Only time will tell how this shakes out, of course. But if those hired during the pandemic are indeed itching to leave, that could lead to openings in critical functions across your organization — openings that may take many months to fill. For talent-starved companies in high-demand markets, augmenting existing teams with temporary talent, and doing so through the expertise of a strategic partner, may be the most effective workaround.

renewed focus on employee mental health

New — and newly pressing — conversations around mental health in the workforce emerged in 2021, many of which touch on office and administration talent directly. Take burnout, for example, which is particularly prevalent among professionals engaged in fast-paced, interpersonal work such as customer service.

When the global pandemic shuttered brick-and-mortar stores and pushed customers online, it wasn't just call volumes and escalations that went through the roof. Customer expectations apparently soared, too. The outcome? Higher stress levels for customer service teams, alongside correspondingly higher risks of burnout, in turn.

But, of course, customer service pros aren't alone in this regard.

In fact, the same essential ingredients — a combination of resource scarcity and skyrocketing demand — have become part of the day-to-day routine for many other professionals in the office and administration space. Recent supply chain shortages, for example, led to product shortages, delayed shipments and a host of other headaches, all of which fell to office and administration pros for resolution. So it's crucial for these business-critical professionals to feel they have the support they need day in and day out at your organization. Otherwise, they're simply going to walk away.

Worryingly, however, as many as 60 percent of leaders say they plan to revert the mental health strategies deployed pre-pandemic in 2022. If that proves to be the case, it could wind up being a major source of attrition for office and administration talent in the year ahead.

key takeaways

  • Remote, flexible work — that’s it. It's what employees crave, and may be the magic bullet for employers of office and administration professionals across the board. What's more, after two years of iterating and experimenting, it's clear that these kinds of working arrangements, well, work. And for employers that (still) don’t get it, or aren't offering flexibility to their workforces for whatever reason, there are going to be some mighty talent hurdles on the road ahead.
  • Aging employees are retiring rather than returning to the office, leaving key gaps in leadership — and these gaps, needless to say, create problems of a different order of magnitude than vacancies at the staff level. Backfilling them will require time and resources. Oh, and did we mention that offering remote and flexible work options might make all of the difference when it comes to these and other hiring outcomes?
  • Employers that hired heavily during the pandemic may soon experience an exodus of workers from so-called “pandemic bridge jobs,” particularly as more flexible alternatives become available. In fact, that just might be the overarching theme for office and administration employers in 2022: The unprecedented talent mobility of 2021 is going to continue unabated in the year ahead. Even your most recently hired contributors will at times be considering jumping ship.
  • The conversation around mental health and related issues like burnout assumed new urgency in 2021, and look for all of that to continue in the year ahead. To avoid losing stressed or burnt out contributors to competitors, employers should not only evangelize greater dialogue, but look to offer far more robust health and wellness programs for their workers as well. Done right, it'll seriously bolster your retention rate in 2022 and beyond.

national salaries

Let's review the hourly wages for entry-level, mid-level and senior-level positions.

administrative
administrative entry-level mid-level senior-level
administrative coordinator $17 - $22 $22 - $28 $28 - $36
eligibility specialist $15 - $18 $18 - $23 $23 - $28
executive assistant $24 - $30 $30 - $38 $38 - $46
front desk receptionist/switchboard operator $13 - $15 $15 - $19 $19 - $24
general/office clerk $13 - $18 $18 - $22 $22 - $27
insurance verification specialist $19 - $24 $24 - $29 $29 - $31
mailroom clerk $12 - $15 $15 - $18 $18 - $20
medical receptionist $13 - $15 $15 - $18 $18 - $22
medical records administrator $36 - $41 $41 - $48 $48 - $56
medical records clerk $14 - $16 $16 - $21 $21 - $27
medical scheduler $13 - $15 $15 - $18 $18 - $22
medical screener $12 - $15 $15 - $19 $19 - $24
office assistant $12 - $15 $15 - $19 $19 - $23
office manager $22 - $28 $28 - $36 $36 - $45
patient access representative/specialist $21 - $23 $23 - $27 $27 - $30
receptionist $11 - $15 $15 - $19 $19 - $23
resolution representative $13 - $15 $15 - $18 $18 - $23
scheduler $17 - $21 $21 - $27 $27 - $34
secretary $15 - $19 $19 - $23 $23 - $28
secretary (bilingual) $15 - $19 $19 - $23 $23 - $28
word processor $14 - $17 $17 - $20 $20 - $24
call/contact center
call/contact center entry-level mid-level senior-level
call center representative (general calls) $12 - $13 $13 - $16 $16 - $20
call center representative (specialized calls) $13 - $16 $16 - $20 $20 - $26
call center sales representative $13 - $16 $16 - $20 $20 - $26
call center supervisor $20 - $26 $26 - $34 $34 - $41
certified coder/medical coding technician $16 - $19 $19 - $22 $22 - $26
customer service manager $16 - $20 $20 - $26 $26 - $34
customer service representative $12 - $14 $14 - $17 $17 - $22
customer service representative, financial $14 - $18 $18 - $22 $22 - $28
customer service representative, insurance (commercial) $18 - $20 $20 - $24 $24 - $29
customer service representative, insurance (personal) $14 - $18 $18 - $25 $25 - $38
data entry operator $14 - $17 $17 - $20 $20 - $24
data entry operator lead $15 - $20 $20 - $23 $23 - $26
data entry supervisor $19 - $24 $24 - $30 $30 - $36
order processing clerk $14 - $17 $17 - $21 $21 - $26
order processing supervisor $21 - $27 $27 - $31 $31 - $36
transportation import/export specialist $20 - $27 $27 - $37 $37 - $50
human resources
human resources entry-level mid-level senior-level
benefits clerk $17 - $21 $21 - $25 $25 - $30
benefits coordinator $26 - $32 $32 - $42 $42 - $54
employee relations representative $24 - $34 $34 - $40 $40 - $53
human resources assistant/clerk $17 - $21 $21 - $25 $25 - $30
human resources coordinator $18 - $23 $23 - $31 $31 - $40
training coordinator $22 - $30 $30 - $40 $40 - $51
revenue cycle
revenue cycle entry-level mid-level senior-level
accounts receivable/collections clerk $15 - $19 $19 - $23 $23 - $28
AR/collections supervisor $22 - $29 $29 - $35 $35 - $43
contact center specialist $12 - $14 $14 - $17 $17 - $22
data analyst $29 - $37 $37 - $50 $50 - $65
director, access services $39 - $56 $56 - $59 $59 - $67
director, revenue cycle $77 - $85 $85 - $91 $91 - $102
insurance billing clerk $16 - $19 $19 - $23 $23 - $28
insurance claims clerk $17 - $20 $20 - $25 $24 - $31
insurance claims processor $17 - $20 $20 - $25 $24 - $31
insurance collections clerk $13 - $15 $15 - $18 $18 - $23
manager, access services $31 - $35 $35 - $39 $39 - $46
medical billing and collections specialist $15 - $18 $18 - $23 $23 - $28
medical transcriptionist $13 - $17 $17 - $22 $22 - $27
sales and marketing
sales and marketing entry-level mid-level senior-level
account coordinator $17 - $22 $22 - $28 $28 - $36
account manager $31 - $37 $37 - $43 $43 - $62
account representative $31 - $36 $36 - $41 $41 - $47
advertising clerk $12 - $15 $15 - $19 $19 - $23
market data researcher $23 - $32 $32 - $45 $45 - $62
marketing assistant $17 - $23 $23 - $32 $32 - $45
marketing coordinator $23 - $32 $32 - $45 $45 - $61
proofreader $15 - $20 $20 - $27 $27 - $32
public relations coordinator $22 - $30 $30 - $41 $41 - $57
sales assistant $16 - $19 $19 - $22 $22 - $26
sales coordinator $22 - $28 $28 - $38 $38 - $52
survey worker, marketing $14 - $17 $17 - $20 $20 - $24
telemarketing representative $12 - $15 $15 - $18 $18 - $21
small business accounting
small business accounting entry-level mid-level senior-level
accounting clerk $16 - $20 $20 - $25 $25 - $30
accounts payable clerk $15 - $19 $19 - $23 $23 - $28
bookkeeper $14 - $17 $17 - $21 $21 - $26
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