10+ Office Assistant Interview Questions To Get Hired With

Office Assistants are becoming in higher demand. And their roles over the years has evolved dramatically. If you are searching for office assistant interview questions and answers, you’ve come to the right place. Office Assistants roles have evolved thanks to many technology startups who have created a significant amount of jobs with their innovations. As well as that creation of jobs, they are also changing their culture dynamics and how offices should essentially operate. They provide their employees with a lot more luxuries, the opportunities to have lunch, dinner, snacks, and countless other benefits which keep them happy. These exact things also become benefits for why future employees want to work in these environments. So it's important, as an office assistant, where you’ll be helping to ensure some of these high quality and luxury benefits are present, stay operational.

When you are applying and interviewing to be an office assistant, I think its really important that you recognize you are the gatekeeper to the work environment. And these days, because our work is so digital, it is important that our environments are well thought through and well managed. It can be a drastic difference in the happiness of employee’s when office environments are well managed versus when they are not. And your responsibility is to lead the efforts for which encourage the overall happiness of everyone who attends each day to do their work.

Office Assistant Interview Questions Table Of Contents


1. How would you describe your role as an office assistant?

The role of an office assistant is to help in the maintenance of the entire office operations. That includes our vendor relationships, like who is cleaning our bathrooms. To managing our benefits we serve to employees, like scheduling lunches or facilitating in the checking, ordering, and stocking of our office snacks or drinks. All things to related to our environment here are my first priority.

2. How would you describe success of this role?

Success of the role is when our office is always in operational order and our employees are happy. If there are situations where the office is messy or there aren’t drinks to be served during lunch, our employees will be displeased. Success is when the operations of the office look and feel seamless to everyone who is coming into the office every single day to do their best quality work.

3. How would you describe failure of this role?

Failure of the role is when the office feels as though it has friction to it. When our employees don’t feel comfortable to be coming into work that day. If they feel as though it would be better to stay at home to work instead of coming into the office, then we have failed. Our goal should be to provide a better experience than one they could get at home.

4. How do you handle recurring vendor relationships?

All vendor relationships should be tracked in a spreadsheet. We need to understand what service they are providing, who the main source of contact is as that vendor, what days they are present and what our average costs are for their services. The main source of contact is important in case there are events which we didn’t anticipate, we can correct them quickly by making a call to that main account manager.

5. How would you go about ensuring the office always has drinks?

Every day the drinks should be accounted for, meaning they should be checked. When they are low, we should place an order with someone, preferably something like postdates or maybe an instacart, for getting the drinks restocked. If we have a vendor who handles our drinks, then I could also make sure that they are contacted when we are low.

6. What would you do if you came into the office and it was dirty?

The first thing I would do is contact our vendor and file a complaint immediately and request it to be resolved. Ideally, our cleaning vendors are coming into the office every evening and if something wasn’t done correctly, we need it to be fixed quickly. The second thing I would do is make an announcement, probably by email, to our staff. Letting them know of the incident, apologizing and then letting them know it is being corrected.

7. What are some of the requirements you have for being able to be an office assistant here?

The first thing is that I will need the ability to pay for our services, vendors or lunches. This is usually in the form of an expense account. The autonomy to be able to manage our vendor relationships is also very important. And then the ability to have wide team communication, like through a direct messenger application.

8. Who do you think you should be reporting to?

My primary report to should be our COO or anyone who is managing the operations of our business. They would technically still be overseeing the operations of the office, which includes me. Sometimes that means this person is the HR director, as well. It depends on the structure here. But technically, it is an operational leader.

9. Who should be at our front desk?

We should always have someone at our front desk available to greet our guests and/or available to manage any packages that might be getting delivered. That person may sometimes be me unless the office size is large enough to facilitate the need of a full-time front-desk person. It depends on our security rules as well as the number of guests that we expect to appear on a regular basis.

10. How do you handle guests at the office?

Guests should all be required to sign in at the front desk, both with their start date/time for the entry as well as when they left. Their identity should also be tracked, so we know who was in the office and why. Lastly, we should be ensuring that the employee for which they are seeing is alerted when the guest has arrived so that they can come and welcome them into the office single-handedly.

11. How would you handle a request for an entire team lunch?

Entire team lunches can be quite difficult to plan for. Mostly because of the requests each person could make about their preference for lunch. Sometimes, it is easier to cater a lunch with a variety of food options for which everyone can pick from. The other option is to solicit a link through a service like Caviar, which can let each employee create their own food order. Though times of this order is important and I will have to ensure everyone knows that they need to click the link I am providing, place their food order and do so before a certain date/time in order to make sure their lunch is available.

12. What are some job functions that you don’t feel you should do?

Job functions that I don’t have to do are anything related to HR. Sometimes there can be an odd blend with the fact that office assistants are handling personal matters, meaning, people who are working at the company and their needs. And sometimes that blend feels as though I need to handle matters as it relates to that persons relationship with the company, like for instance in situations where they may have been terminated. But, I would let the HR managers handle those situations and if it is something related to clearing out the office of that person or setting up a new office for the person who is replacing them, then that bodes more accurately to where my personal job description lays.

Conclusion & Office Assistant Prep

Those mock interview questions above should give you a really good starting point for being an office assistant. Remember that all jobs in a company are important, no matter what the title. And going into an interview, where you are prepared to show that you understand each job has a role in the holistic functions of the businesses operations which help you tremendously. Recognize that your ability to answer these questions confidently may also have a positive impact on your future employment. If you have any other questions that you’d like to see listed here, please feel free to contact me. I would urge you to sit down with a friend or family member and have them ask you these questions so you can practice your delivery. Then ask them to come up with a few random questions which you aren’t prepared for and go through that situational example of on the fly type of questions and how you would answer them. Good luck with your future job search and I hope you land your next office assistant job.

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author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is an experienced executive who has spent a number of years in Silicon Valley hiring and coaching some of the world’s most valuable technology teams. Patrick has been a source for Human Resources and career related insights for Forbes, Glassdoor, Entrepreneur, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, and many more.


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