Before there was an Administrative Professionals Day, there was a National Secretaries Day, created in 1952. We’ve come a long way since then, and so has the role and the celebration.
This day of recognition has gone through several makeovers to reflect changing administrative job titles and responsibilities in the modern economy. While its moniker has changed, the purpose of Administrative Professionals Day has remained the same: to celebrate and shed light on administrative professionals’ devoted, valued work.
Are there team members you’d like to honor? Even with many employees working remotely these days, there are still ways to celebrate the administrative professionals you work with regularly. Every year, Administrative Professionals Day falls on the Wednesday of the last full week of April. Mark these dates on your calendar:
- 2020: April 22
- 2021: April 21
- 2022: April 27
In some companies, Administrative Professionals Week — the last week of April — is devoted to celebrating the office’s treasured administrative staff. Considering the amount of work that they do, it’s no wonder.
The value of administrative professionals
According to the International Association of Administrative Professionals, one of the original sponsors of Administrative Professionals Day, there are more than 22 million administrative professionals in the United States. Their roles are incredibly diverse — and often, these professionals go above and beyond their regular duties.
Administrative professionals provide real benefits to the people they support and the organization at large, and their work should not go unnoticed. And given the role many administrative staff are playing in supporting their teams in today’s challenging business environment, they deserve their time in the spotlight more than ever.
Sharing appreciation on Administrative Professionals Day and beyond
If you’re looking for ways to honor your support staff, going the traditional route and sending an electronic gift card is still a solid choice. But if you’re searching for a more unique way of showing your staff appreciation while working remotely, try one of these ideas:
A kind word — An emailed thank-you can go a long way, but don’t leave it at that. Let your administrative staff know how their work has helped you or the department. Share praise from happy clients, celebrate achievements and recognize your staff publicly — by acknowledging their contributions with peers. An even nicer touch is a verbal commendation followed by a thank-you note. Administrative professionals can keep these accolades, reminding them of how much they are appreciated.
Rest and relaxation — Administrative professionals work hard, and it can be difficult to find personal time to unwind. Give them some flexibility to log off early to recharge and if extra time off isn’t feasible, consider a gift card so they can treat themselves to something they enjoy.
New opportunities — Show your administrative team members that you’re invested in their future by offering new professional challenges and opportunities. If they are interested, ask them to oversee a project or encourage them to consider joining a mentorship program. A gesture like this will show that you value a staff member’s contributions and career growth and have confidence in their skills and abilities.
Professional development — Offer reimbursement for professional organization memberships or online courses. Administrative professionals are eager to learn and expand their skills, and they need to stay abreast of the latest technologies and best practices. When you encourage employees to grow in their careers, the result benefits the entire team.
Hard-working staff members will likely appreciate any act of gratitude, no matter how big or small. Even if you’re working with a limited budget, you can make an administrative professional’s day.