How to Become a Medical Office Administrator [in 3 Simple Steps]

Nov 12, 2021

Do you have a desire to help others? Maybe you have a passion for medicine, but find yourself a bit too squeamish for most medical professions. Or maybe you’re just looking for a stable, well-paying job. If any of these strike you as true, you should consider how to become a medical office administrator!


Though there aren’t any glamorous TV shows about the bureaucratic side of medicine, medical office administrators provide a vital support role in the healthcare system. Without their help, nurses wouldn’t have patients, doctors wouldn’t have appointments, and hospitals would fall apart.


If you think a career in medical office administration might be a good choice for you, then let’s discuss how to become medical office administrator!

Should I Become a Medical Office Administrator?

Before you set down the path to become a medical office administrator, you’ll want to make sure it’s the right career path for you. Let’s take a look at some of a medical office administrator’s typical job duties.


A medical office administrator’s day-to-day work is fairly routine. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, a medical office administrator’s typical duties include…


  • Answering telephones.
  • Arranging staff meetings.
  • Scheduling appointments.
  • Handling mail and faxes.
  • Editing documents.
  • Preparing memos, invoices, or reports.


In short, a medical office administrator handles many of the medical industry’s non-medical functions. 


While medical office administrators are not directly involved with any medical procedures, they still need to familiarize themselves with certain medical terms’ and procedures’ definitions. Moreover, they’ll be working closely with patients, so they’ll need to possess something akin to a good bedside manner.

1. Choose & Apply to a Medical Office Administration Program

Medical office administrators don’t technically need a specialized degree to qualify for their positions. However, getting a degree or certification will greatly improve your chances of getting hired. 


Before you choose a program, however, you’ll need to consider the following factors the following factors:


  • Accreditation. If a school’s accredited, that means their institution and curriculum have met regional agencies’ requirements. If a school’s not properly accredited, then most employers won’t consider its degrees valid.
  • Course Offerings. You need to check the curriculum for their program to make sure its courses cover everything you’ll need to know as a medical office administrator. This includes business, communication, and basic bookkeeping alongside medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, and the ins-and-outs of the healthcare system.
  • Reputation Amongst Employers. You’re getting this certification to gain an advantage over your competition, so you should probably make sure it’s a real advantage. If your program has a bad reputation for producing unqualified candidates, you’ll need to pick a different school.


After you’ve found your perfect medical office administration program, you only need to apply.

2. Complete a Medical Office Administration Program

Once you’ve applied to your program of choice, it’s time to start taking classes towards your certification. A good program will include all the information you’ll need for a successful career in medical office administration.


Performing well in each of these classes will require study and hard work. Don’t try to skip class, since everything you learn in a technical program is relevant to your day-to-day duties.

3. Find the Right Medical Office Administration Job!

Now it’s time to find your first medical office administration job! The average wage for a Medical Office Assistant is around $38,000 a year. Though your first job might pay a bit lower, you’ll want to avoid any jobs that pay less than about $27,000. As a medical office administrator, you should expect a pretty consistent work schedule. There will generally be both full-time and part-time work available.


I hope you learned how to become a medical office administrator. You can expect to find a job in a physician’s office or in the local hospital, as medical office administrators provide a vital function in the healthcare system.


If you’re social, empathetic, and a hard-worker, then medical office administration might be the career for you! If you’re interested in taking the first step towards your new career, check out Chattanooga College’s medical office administration program to schedule a chat with an advisor.