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What PA’s think, revealed

The UK’s leading annual two day exhibition and conference for PAs, EAs, VAs, secretaries, office managers and executive support professionals, has released a summary of the results of this year’s National PA Survey.

The latest findings of the survey (which is now in its fourth year) are being unveiled today to mark National PA Day 2014.  Highlights from the survey will also be distributed at office*, which opens today at 10am at Olympia National, London. Completed by a sample of 1,275 PAs working across the UK last month, the survey results provide a fascinating insight into the role of modern PAs – often the unsung heroes of the workplace.

“There are an estimated 650,000 people working across the UK in a PA role.  Although their job titles may vary, together their profession contributes positively to the productivity of every single part of the economy,” says office* event manager David Maguire.  “The majority of survey respondents very evidently enjoy the important work that they do.  But whilst many do feel appreciated by their boss or bosses, there is still an overwhelming consensus of feeling that the PA profession is undervalued as a career choice.”“By recognising – and promoting – the achievements of PAs on National PA Day, we aim to encourage greater support and enthusiasm for the profession as a whole,” he explains.

As in previous years, thousands of PAs are expected to gather in London at office* on 7 October to celebrate National PA Day.  The two-day event features 175 exhibitors, free Keynotes, expert training and unparalleled networking opportunities.

Summary of the 4th annual National PA Survey
A sample of the results can be found below, whilst the full report will be available to download from later this month*

Which of the following salary bands do you fall into? Up to £20,000 – 7 percent; £21-£25,000 – 20 percent; £26-£30,000 – 26 percent; £31-£35,000 – 21 percent; £36-£40,000 – 13 percent; £41-£50,000 – 10 percent; £51,000+ – 3 percent

How well do you feel your pay reflects what is expected of you in your role? I feel very underpaid… 16 percent; I feel slightly underpaid… 44 percent; Adequately… 35 percent; I feel I'm paid slightly more than I would expect… 4 percent; I feel I'm paid significantly more… 1 percent

On a scale of 1-5, where 5 is the highest, how appreciated do you feel by your boss(es)? 1 – 3 percent; 2 – 9 percent; 3 – 25 percent; 4 – 42 percent; 5 – 21 percent

Does your boss expect you to work outside of normal office hours? Yes – 47 percent; No – 53 percent

How many additional hours a week do you work? Under 1 hour…. 4 percent; 1-2 hours… 11 percent; 2-3 hours… 20 percent; 4-5 hours… 23 percent; 5-6 hours… 9 percent; 6-7 hours… 9 percent; More than 7 hours… 24 percent

What is the bulk of your day-to-day role made up of? Diary management – 37 percent; Email management – 23 percent; Travel management – 4 percent; Note taking and transcribing – 3 percent; Errands for your boss -1 percent; HR – 2 percent; Event management – 3 percent; Office management – 15 percent; Other, please specify – 12 percent

Do you feel that being a PA is undervalued as a professional career choice? Yes – 78 percent; No – 16 percent; No opinion – 6 percent

Do you feel confident to ask for career development budget? Yes – 49 percent; No – 51 percent

What one word would you use to sum up the role of a PA? Most used: Multitasker, Organised, Challenging, Invaluable, Undervalued, Support, Busy, Essential, Rewarding, Demanding, Hectic, Varied…

*The results include answers from all 1,275 respondents who took part in the 4th annual National PA Day Survey between Friday 5th and Friday 12th September 2014.

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