Staff no longer desk-bound –

The Advertiser - Careers - - Front Page - BEN HYDE


AD­MIN­IS­TRA­TIVE roles don’t have to keep you bound to a desk with eyes glued to a com­puter screen or paper work.

Op­por­tu­ni­ties are avail­able across many in­dus­tries for ad­min­is­tra­tive staff to find a bal­ance be­tween indoor and out­door work.

Aus­tralian In­sti­tute of Of­fice Pro­fes­sion­als SA di­vi­sion pres­i­dent Cather­ine Mid­dle­ton says the im­age of ad­min­is­tra­tive staff sit­ting at a desk from nine to five is not nec­es­sar­ily the re­al­ity.

‘‘In the min­ing in­dus­try, there are peo­ple who are work­ing in of­fices but they also go out into the field,’’ she says.

‘‘There are roles where you can do both. It just de­pends what sort of in­dus­try you are in.’’

Mrs Mid­dle­ton says in­di­vid­u­als have the power to find the bal­ance in their in­dus­try.

She says an ad­min­is­tra­tive staffer at an in­surance com­pany, for ex­am­ple, can also go out and as­sess claims with the rel­e­vant train­ing.

‘‘You have to make it hap­pen,’’ she says.

‘‘Once you get a foot in the door and get the ba­sics, you can grow.’’

Speak­ing from ex­pe­ri­ence, af­ter work­ing in an ad­min­is­tra­tive role with the now-de­funct Ade­laide Rams rugby league team, Mrs Mid­dle­ton says sport is a par­tic­u­larly ap­peal­ing in­dus­try for peo­ple seek­ing a bal­ance.

‘‘Get­ting into sport ad­min­is­tra­tion is a huge ex­pe­ri­ence,’’ she says. ‘‘You live sport. It’s an ex­cit­ing, dy­namic in­dus­try.’’

One ex­am­ple is a one-year trainee­ship through Sport SA, Op­er­a­tion Flin­ders Foun­da­tion and SA Tall Ships that mixes ad­min­is­tra­tive skills with the great out­doors.

Op­er­a­tion Flin­ders Foun­da­tion new di­rec­tions man­ager Kylie Poin­ton says the trainee­ship, for peo­ple aged 17 to 24, pro­vides op­por­tu­ni­ties for young peo­ple to de­velop many skills.

The trainees spend al­ter­nate months with the Op­er­a­tion Flin­ders Foun­da­tion and the One and All tall ship, on which they make trips to the Flin­ders Ranges – some of it aboard the ves­sel – with young peo­ple at risk.

‘‘The trainee­ship of­fers a unique op­por­tu­nity for a young per­son to gain na­tion­ally recog­nised qualifications on a ca­reer path in recre­ation, sport and com­mu­nity ser­vice,’’ Ms Poin­ton says.

‘‘ They gain out­stand­ing or­gan­i­sa­tional skills, par­tic­i­pate in fit­ness pro­grams and learn skills as di­verse as bush sur­vival, ab­seil­ing, ship han­dling, nav­i­ga­tion and first aid.

‘‘Along with the field com­po­nent, the trainee also learns and puts into prac­tice skills re­lated to ad­min­is­tra­tion.’’

This year’s trainee is Woodville stu­dent Tom Litch­field.

Mr Litch­field, 19, says he is thor­oughly en­joy­ing the mix of ac­tiv­i­ties that the trainee­ship of­fers.

‘‘ I started in Fe­bru­ary and straight away I had a voy­age aboard the One and All,’’ he says. ‘‘I was thrown in the deep end but it was worth it.’’

When not at sea or trekking the Flin­ders Ranges, Mr Litch­field is ei­ther study­ing the the­ory part of the course at Sport SA or gain­ing valu­able ad­min­is­tra­tive skills in the of­fice.

‘‘I ro­tate jobs each month so you’re never get­ting sick of it and are al­ways do­ing dif­fer­ent stuff,’’ he says.

‘‘In be­tween trips to the Flin­ders Ranges and voy­ages on the One and All, Iwork in the of­fices do­ing some ad­min­is­tra­tive work and fol­low up stuff with the kids.’’

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