The front desk receptionist works in an organization, an office or an administrative support position generally in the lobby or in the waiting area of the company or the organization. The basic duty performed by this individual is to receive and greet visitors, clients and even patients in an organization or hospital. Thus the person handling this job is known as a receptionist.
Duties performed by a front desk receptionist are varied – she answers queries about the company and also its policies, its products and the services that the company provides. Other duties include directing the visitors to the people that they want to meet, sorting out and handling all mail, answering the phone, fixing up appointments for the boss and for people who would like to get in touch with the senior managers of the company, Filing as also maintaining records, data entry and also different office communication tasks like handling faxes and emails.
In certain offices and organizations the front desk receptionist also has financial responsibilities that include book-keeping. Sometimes the receptionist also fulfills "security duties" like verification of the identity of the employees, issuing passes to the visitors, and also observing and reporting any kind of suspicious activities or persons that she might come across.
Since she is the face of the company or organization and the first business contact that a person meets on entering the office, she must always exude a sense of calm and courteous professionalism. The personal qualities that she must possess include a well-groomed and immaculate appearance, attentiveness to detail, the ability to deal with situations in a mature manner, a sense of loyalty to the organization, dependability and also a positive attitude.
Job description of the front desk receptionist entails having to deal with different kinds of people with varying demands and personalities. At the same time the receptionist is also expected to be proficient in multitasking which can be stressful. In some organizations or companies the position of the front desk receptionist is considered to be a servile one while in others the job profile is considered as one which has an element of glamor as well as sophistication.
A smart front desk receptionist would use the opportunity during her working hours to learn and familiarize herself with the working of the office and slowly and steadily advance to higher positions and administrative jobs within the office. However in a small doctor's or lawyer's office she would also have to shoulder other duties and responsibilities like that of the office manager. In the hospitality sector which works round the clock, the receptionist who does the night shift has the responsibility of consolidating and reporting the daily account. This is known as night auditing.
Some of the must-have attributes for this job are possessiveness of excellent phone skills and manners, a clear and pleasant voice, strong technical and office skills. At the same time if she is naturally tactful, diplomatic and courteous then she is definitely an asset to the organization.