By definition, executive assistants tend to support executives and chief officers of an organization. Like administrative assistants, they have organizational and clerical duties, but often are involved with more complex responsibilities for the company itself. They conduct research, prepare reports and review documents, and some even supervise other staff. Executive assistants typically make more per year than administrative assistants, especially at the senior level.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that executive administrative assistants earned an annual wage of $48,120, or $23.13 per hour, for 2011. But this figure doesn’t account for years of experience and certifications. Salaries increase with experience and with additional education.
Executive assistants earn salaries ranging from $37,750 to $50,750, according to Office Team, a national staffing agency of skilled office professionals. At the senior level, executive assistants garner even higher salaries, making somewhere between $44,250 and $60,000 per year. If supporting C-level staff, such as chief executive officers, chief financial officers or chief accounting officers, these professionals earn on average an additional 10 percent, bringing salaries up to $48,675 to $66,000 per year.
Executive assistants with a Certified Administrative Professional designationcan earn an additional 6 percent per year, or salaries anywhere from $40,015 to $53,795; at the senior level, salaries can reach upward of $46,905 to $63,600. Those with a Microsoft Office Specialist certification earn an additional 8 percent per year, so an executive assistant can expect to make $40,770 to $54,810 and a senior executive assistant can earn $47,790 to $64,800.
As with any job, location impacts the salaries of executive assistants. In New York City, for example, an executive assistant makes 41 percent more than average. At the senior level, this translates to $62,000 to $85,000 per year. In Tysons Corner, Virginia, executive assistants earn 30 percent more than average annually. Those in Seattle, Washington, make almost 19 percent more than average.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 13-percent employment growth for executive assistants from 2010 to 2020. This is just slightly slower than the anticipated growth of 14 percent for all occupations.