What are the best personal assistant courses?

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A tutor leads a seminar for a room full of personal assistants.

Whether you’re already a working personal assistant, or aspiring to be one, your career can benefit from a number of qualifications and certificates. Several organisations offer specific PA courses catered to the profession, while others are broader in their subjects, but very much applicable to the role.

In this blog we’ll look at five of the best personal assistant courses, covering the spectrum from online personal assistant qualifications to full-time diplomas. If you’re a newbie to the personal assistant role and wondering how to become a PA, you may well be nervous about being underqualified for the job. We’re here to put your mind at ease, and show you exactly what actions you can take to take on your dream PA job.

Do I need a degree to be a personal assistant?

Before we delve into some fantastic options for your PA education, let’s first address a common question you may have: do you need a degree to be a personal assistant?

The short answer is no – many PA roles will require education up to A-level only. The long answer is – it depends on the particular PA job. In more formal and high-pressure workplaces such as corporate finance, private equity, or family offices, an undergraduate degree may be a prerequisite, while the more interesting and higher-paid PA positions will of course be more attainable with a degree.

However, there are alternatives to a degree that can be just as powerful when it comes to PA jobs. This is why we advise you to consider the below personal assistant courses – having these achievements to your name will vastly improve your job prospects and opportunities for career progression.

Oxford Media & Business School

OMBS is a highly-regarded business school that regularly produces the most sought-after PAs, many of whom find work through Tiger. OMBS’s professional business diploma is an excellent alternative to university if you already have a clear vision of your career and want to hit the ground running. At just one year long, the course is intensive, practical, and gives students a solid grounding in the PA skills and knowledge desired by PA hiring managers.

Quest Professional

London’s Quest also has a strong reputation among employers of personal assistants, with an incredible 97% of their graduates securing a job after completing their courses. Quest is a great option for both A-level school-leavers and university graduates. They offer a diploma course as an alternative to degrees, as well as a graduate training programme that gives postgraduates the real-world business sense to help them make a successful transition from the campus to the office.

Pitman Training

If you’re looking for accessible personal assistant courses that you can study in your own time, look no further than Pitman Training. They run diploma courses for personal assistants, in addition to those in executive assistant jobs and virtual assistant jobs, all of which can be taken online or in-person. For PAs just looking to keep their skills up to date, Pitman also offers less intensive courses and seminars.

Your Excellency

Another superb academy worth exploring for personal assistant courses online is Your Excellency. Their fully-accredited and regulated qualifications are designed to elevate the performance of PAs and EAs through management training, and are thus of huge benefit to existing PAs who are looking to take the next step in their careers.

Executive Support

Executive Support magazine is in itself a brilliant resource for PAs and EAs, but they also run training programmes. Their personal assistant courses are run online or in-person, in many major cities around the world, and are suitable for entry-level to senior PAs. The magazine’s reputation allows them to secure industry-leading experts to train students.

Personal assistant courses should be a consideration at any point in your career as a PA, due to the ever-changing nature of the role. However, at the outset of your PA journey, you should draw on any qualifications you have when aiming to impress a hiring manager. Read our guides to personal assistant CVs, PA personal statements and PA cover letters for insider tips on how to make your experience shine!

When you’re ready to apply for your next PA job, head to our job search page.

Author Rebecca Siciliano Tiger Recruitment Team

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