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Admin, HR, legal

Receptionist

Receptionists are the first point of contact for visitors to organisations.

Annual Salary

£12,000 to £21,000

Average UK salary in 2019 was £30,378
(source Office for National Statistics)

Working hours

38 to 40 a week

You could work: evenings / weekends / bank holidays; on shifts

26%
Future employment

There will be 26% fewer Receptionist jobs in 2025.
In your local area

Day to day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • greeting visitors and directing them to the correct person or department
  • managing the visitors book and giving out security passes
  • answering enquiries in person, by phone and email
  • managing a room booking system and keeping rooms tidy
  • dealing with incoming and outgoing post and deliveries
  • arranging appointments and updating records on databases
  • taking payments and handling invoices

Working environment

You could work in a reception area, in an NHS or private hospital, at a fitness centre, in an office or in a hotel.

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly
College

Getting a college qualification may be helpful. Courses are widely available and include:

  • Level 1 Award in Salon Reception Duties (beauty and hairdressing)
  • Level 1 Certificate in Business and Administration (office administration)
  • Level 2 Certificate in Front of House Reception (hospitality and catering)
  • Level 2 Diploma in Reception Operation and Services (hospitality and catering)

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or fewer GCSEs at grades 3 to 1 (D to G), or equivalent, for a level 1 course
  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
For more information
Apprenticeship

You could get into this job through a hospitality team member intermediate apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
For more information
Work

You could start as an admin assistant in an organisation, for example by doing temporary work, then apply for a permanent job as a receptionist when a vacancy becomes available.

Volunteering and work experience

Volunteering is highly valued if you want to apply for receptionist jobs.

Direct application

You may not need any formal qualifications to apply directly for work as a receptionist.

Some employers will prefer you to have a good general education, with GCSEs and IT skills.

More information

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a receptionist in hospitality from the Hospitality Guild.

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With training and experience, you could move into a senior receptionist or personal assistant (PA) role.

In a GP surgery or health centre, you could train to become a medical secretary or a practice manager.

You can find out more about becoming a receptionist in hospitality from the Hospitality Guild.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

You'll need:

  • the ability to work well with others
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • administration skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • customer service skills
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • knowledge of English language
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
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