Receptionist Kaiwhakatau Manuhiri

Receptionists greet visitors and clients, and deal with enquiries and requests. Their work includes administration tasks such as answering the telephone, scheduling appointments and keeping records.

Receptionists may do some or all of the following:

  • greet visitors, clients or patients and notify staff of their arrival
  • answer telephone calls and other enquiries
  • make bookings or appointments for clients or patients
  • administrative tasks such as managing documents, filing, or organising catering
  • receive and sort mail, and arrange courier and mail pick-ups
  • maintain financial accounts
  • collect money from clients or patients.

Medical/dental receptionists and admissions officers may also maintain patient records, and maintain and check hospital waiting lists.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for receptionists includes previous customer service work such as in a store or cafe.

Personal Qualities

Receptionists need to be:

  • calm, pleasant and efficient
  • good at communicating and listening
  • good at planning, organising and problem solving
  • able to multitask and work well under pressure
  • be accurate and have attention to detail
  • able to keep information confidential
  • able to work independently.


Receptionists need to have:

  • computer and word processing skills
  • planning and organisational skills
  • office work skills, including telephone and document management
  • knowledge of administration policies, systems and procedures.

Medical receptionists and admissions officers may also need to know about hospital and staff routines, medical services, booking procedures and timetables, and have an understanding of medical terms.



  • usually work regular office hours but may also work evenings or weekends
  • work at front desks or reception areas of businesses and organisations.

Receptionists can earn around $48K-$65K per year.

Pay for receptionists varies depending on their experience and duties.

  • Receptionists usually earn $48,000 to $65,000 a year.

Source: Hays, 'Salary Guide FY 23/24', 2023; and PERSOLKELLY, '2023- 2024 Salary Guide,' 2023.

Receptionists may move into other roles in the organisation or hospital where they work, such as:

  • administration officer
  • clinical coder
  • personal assistant/executive assistant
  • medical records officer
  • medical typist.

Receptionists may specialise in particular roles, such as:

Admissions Officer
Admissions officers greet hospital patients and organise their admission and discharge.
Hotel/Motel Receptionist
Hotel and motel receptionists greet and assist guests.
Dental/Medical Receptionist
Dental and medical receptionists work in doctors' or dental surgeries, hospitals, or private clinics.

Years Of Training

There are no specific requirements to become a receptionist as skills are usually gained on the job. However, a New Zealand Certificate in Business (Administration and Technology) (Level 3 or 4) may be useful.