What is an administrator? Definition and examples
An Administrator is a person who ensures that an organization operates efficiently. Their specific duties depend on the type of company, organization, or entity where they work. Above all, administrators need to be highly organized and have good communication skills.
The term may also refer to somebody who a court appoints to wind up a deceased person’s estate. In such cases, the person died without leaving a will, or it did not name an executor. Additionally, the court may appoint an administrator if the named executor cannot or will not act.
An administrator could be somebody the court appoints to manage the affairs of a company. Specifically, to manage the affairs of a business that has become insolvent. In other words, they manage a firm that has been put into administration.
We call a female administrator either an administratrix or administrator. Even though we rarely use the former term today, it is still valid and correct.
An administrator is an organizer
In companies, administrators devise short- and long-term plans that establish a clear set of goals and objectives. In other words, they aim to get the organization to where it wants to go.
To make sure these plans succeed, the administrator above all needs to understand the how, when, and who of the whole plan.
All administrators are in charge of administration. Administration refers to activities that deal with organizing and managing the work of a business. Administration also exists in government, charities, and many other types of organizations.
Administrators’ roles are integral to the organization in which they work. Their functions typically comprise a wide set of duties, including filing and management.
Most administrators work full-time hours in a single location. In smaller businesses, however, they may work part-time.
Clerical level administrator
An administrator may be somebody who is responsible for the smooth and effective running of a single office. Their duties include overseeing all the paperwork and answering the telephone.
They will usually report to all people within the office. Their role will probably depend on what the other colleagues’ duties are.
Most office administrators are responsible for dealing with or distributing all post within an office. Mail duties may include opening all letters that come in and making sure they get to the relevant people. Additionally, they are in charge of all the outgoing post.
They will also devise and organize the office’s filing. Filing not only involves fetching the required documents but also putting them back after people have used them.
Other general office duties include operating the switchboard if the office has one, photocopying, and faxing.
Senior members of the department may instruct the administrator to phone other organizations or departments to relay their messages.
In some organizations, the first port-of-call for office emails is the administrator. In the same way that they do with the post, they then send the emails to the relevant people.
Most administrators are in charge of the company’s address book. This book has the contact details of contractors and clients. Their job is to keep them up-to-date and in working order.
Some administrators may have to type letters and produce documents, i.e., they perform secretarial-type duties.
Other examples of administrators
- Forum Administrators manage the forum’s technical details. They may promote or demote members to or from moderators, and manage the rules. They may also create sections and sub-sections, and perform any database operations. Some forum administrators even act as moderators.
- Network Administrators maintain the computer infrastructure, with emphasis on networking. They are in charge of the on-site servers, software-network interactions, and network integrity and resilience. They are often involved in proactive work which may include network monitoring and testing the whole network for weakness. Some install and implement updates, as well as email and Internet filters.
- Server Administrators are in control of a server. They oversee the performance and condition of the multiple servers of an organization. A server administrator may be in charge of a game server. They design, install, administer and optimize company servers and related components. Above all, their aim is to get the best performance possible.
- System Administrators, or sysadmins, are responsible for the maintenance, configuration, and the reliable operation of computer systems. They may be in charge of multi-user computers such as servers. They seek to make sure that the up-time, resources, performance, and security of the computers meet the needs of the users. Furthermore, they need to make sure they do all this without exceeding the budget.
Working in publishing, arts, and education
Also known as arts managers. They work for arts and cultural organizations. Examples include art galleries, art festivals, arts councils, regional arts boards, and symphonies. Arts administrators may also work in theaters, dance companies, and local authorities.
In a small organization, they may deal with the event booking and handle financial matters. They may even organize the marketing.
In larger organizations, they may be in charge of the buildings and facilities. Within some organizations, arts administrators are responsible for the performers and artists, public relations, marketing, as well as writing reports.
Also known as admins or sysops (systems operators). These people are Wikipedia editors who block/unblock user accounts and IP addresses from editing, delete/undelete pages, rename pages without restriction, and edit fully protected pages. There are nearly 3,000 administrators in the English Wikipedia.
University Department Administrators play a vital role in their institution. There are two types:
- Those who work in central admin.
- Those who work in specific university departments or faculties.
University department administrators are the main point of contact for both students and staff. They take care of finances, including financial planning and monitoring. Some of them coordinate staff meetings and are also responsible for the department’s website.
Video – What is an Administrator?
This interesting video, from our sister channel on YouTube – Marketing Business Network, explains what an ‘Administrator’ is using simple and easy-to-understand language and examples.