Receptionist Job Requirements – Career Profiles


This is the first person someone sees or talks to when he or she contacts an organization. Receptionists serve as representatives of the company and have to establish an excellent first impression. Typical job duties include:

  • Answering telephone calls
  • Greeting and welcoming visitors
  • Scheduling appointments
  • Opening the day’s mail

Responsibilities vary according to the organization. Medical receptionists, for example, may obtain personal or financial information from patients. More than one-third of all receptionists work in service industries, especially in health-related fields. Manufacturing, trade, government and real estate offices also employ a large number of receptionists.

Receptionists perform administrative tasks, such as receiving visitors, answering phones, and providing general information about their company to customers. A receptionist is often the first contact a person will meet at a company. Because many receptionists work with the public, a professional appearance, a pleasant personality and a clear speaking voice are necessary.

A high-school diploma or its equivalent is the most common educational requirement. Those with computer skills and relevant work experience should have the best job prospects. Recommended training includes computers and word processing. Receptionists generally earn between $11 and $15 per hour. (Salary data is based on information from and varies based on experience.) These positions can sometimes serve as a stepping stone into the workforce.