What They Do: Information clerks perform routine clerical duties, maintain records, collect data, and provide information to customers.
Work Environment: Although information clerks are employed in nearly every industry, many work in government agencies, hotels, and healthcare facilities. Most information clerks work full time.
How to Become One: Information clerks typically need a high school diploma and learn their skills on the job. Some employers may prefer to hire candidates with some college education or an associate’s degree, depending on the occupation.
Salary: The median annual wage for information clerks is $37,450.
Job Outlook: Employment of information clerks is projected to show little or no change over the next ten years.
Related Careers: Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of information clerks with similar occupations.
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Information clerks perform routine clerical duties such as maintaining records, collecting data, and providing information to customers.
Information clerks typically do the following:
Information clerks perform routine office support functions in an organization, business, or government. They use telephones, computers, and other office equipment such as scanners and fax machines.
The following are examples of types of information clerks:
Correspondence clerks respond to inquiries from the public or customers. They prepare standard responses to requests for merchandise, damage claims, delinquent accounts, incorrect billings, or complaints about unsatisfactory services. They may also review the organization's records and type response letters for their supervisors to sign.
Court clerks organize and maintain court records. They prepare the calendar of cases, also known as the docket, and inform attorneys and witnesses about their upcoming court appearances. Court clerks also receive, file, and forward court documents.
Eligibility interviewers conduct interviews both in person and over the phone to determine if applicants qualify for government assistance and benefits. They answer applicants' questions about programs and may refer them to other agencies for assistance.
File clerks maintain electronic or paper records. They enter and retrieve data, organize records, and file documents. In organizations with electronic filing systems, file clerks scan and upload documents.
Hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks, also called front desk clerks, provide customer service to guests at the establishment's front desk. They check guests in and out, assign rooms, and process payments. They also keep occupancy records; take, confirm, or change room reservations; and provide information on the hotel's policies and services. In addition, front desk clerks answer phone calls, take and deliver messages for guests, and handle guests' requests and complaints. For example, when guests report problems in their rooms, clerks coordinate with maintenance staff to resolve the issue.
Human resources assistants provide administrative support to human resources managers. They maintain personnel records on employees, including their addresses, employment history, and performance evaluations. They may post information about job openings and compile candidates' résumés for review.
Interviewers conduct interviews over the phone, in person, through mail, or online. They use the information to complete forms, applications, or questionnaires for market research surveys, census forms, and medical histories. Interviewers typically follow set procedures and questionnaires to obtain specific information.
License clerks process applications for licenses and permits, administer tests, and collect application fees. They determine if applicants are qualified to receive particular licenses or if additional documentation needs to be submitted. They also maintain records of applications received and licenses issued.
Municipal clerks provide administrative support for town or city governments by maintaining government records. They record, maintain, and distribute minutes of town or city council meetings to local officials and staff and help prepare for elections. They may also answer requests for information from local, state, and federal officials and the public.
Order clerks receive orders from customers and process payments. For example, they may enter customer information, such as addresses and payment methods, into the order entry system. They also answer questions about prices and shipping.
Reservation and transportation ticket agents and travel clerks take and confirm passengers' reservations for hotels and transportation. They also sell and issue tickets and answer questions about itineraries, rates, and package tours. Ticket agents who work at airports and railroads also check bags and issue boarding passes to passengers.
Information clerks hold about 1.4 million jobs. Employment in the detailed occupations that make up information clerks is distributed as follows:
|Hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks||238,800|
|Interviewers, except eligibility and loan||176,300|
|Information and record clerks, all other||165,600|
|Eligibility interviewers, government programs||156,900|
|Court, municipal, and license clerks||156,800|
|Reservation and transportation ticket agents and travel clerks||109,200|
|Human resources assistants, except payroll and timekeeping||106,100|
The largest employers of information clerks are as follows:
|Local government, excluding education and hospitals||15%|
|Healthcare and social assistance||12%|
|Transportation and warehousing||8%|
|Administrative and support services||5%|
Information clerks work in nearly every industry. Although most clerks work in offices, interviewers may travel to applicants' locations to meet with them.
The work of information clerks who provide customer service can be stressful, particularly when dealing with dissatisfied customers.
Reservation and transportation ticket agents at airports or shipping counters lift and maneuver heavy luggage or packages, which may weigh up to 100 pounds.
Reservation and transportation ticket agents and travel clerks have one of the highest rates of injuries and illnesses of all occupations. Lifting and maneuvering heavy luggage or packages may lead to sprains, strains, or overexertion. To avoid injuries, these workers must follow procedures, such as protocols for safe lifting.
Most information clerks work full time. However, part-time work is common for hotel clerks and file clerks.
Clerks in lodging and transportation establishments that are open around the clock may work evenings, weekends, and holidays.
Get the education you need: Find schools for Information Clerks near you!
Information clerks typically need a high school diploma and learn their skills on the job.
Although candidates for most positions usually qualify with a high school diploma, human resources assistants generally need an associate's degree. Whether pursuing a degree or not, courses in word processing and spreadsheet applications are particularly helpful.
Most information clerks receive short-term on-the-job training, usually lasting a few weeks. Training typically covers clerical procedures and the use of computer applications. Those employed in government receive training that may last several months and includes learning about various government programs and regulations.
Some information clerks may advance to other administrative positions with more responsibilities, such as secretaries and administrative assistants. With completion of a bachelor's degree, some human resources assistants may become human resources specialists.
Communication skills. Information clerks must be able to explain policies and procedures clearly to customers and the public.
Integrity. Information clerks, particularly human resources assistants, have access to confidential information. They must be trusted to adhere to the applicable confidentiality and privacy rules governing the dissemination of this information.
Interpersonal skills. Information clerks who work with the public and customers must understand and communicate information effectively in order to establish positive relationships.
Organizational skills. Information clerks must be able to retrieve files and other important information quickly and efficiently.
The median annual wage for information clerks is $37,450. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $24,010, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $60,230.
Median annual wages for information clerks are as follows:
|Eligibility interviewers, government programs||$47,420|
|Human resources assistants, except payroll and timekeeping||$45,630|
|Court, municipal, and license clerks||$44,610|
|Information and record clerks, all other||$43,160|
|Reservation and transportation ticket agents and travel clerks||$39,900|
|Interviewers, except eligibility and loan||$37,220|
|Hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks||$28,080|
The median annual wages for information clerks in the top industries in which they work are as follows:
|Local government, excluding education and hospitals||$46,590|
|Transportation and warehousing||$39,170|
|Healthcare and social assistance||$37,340|
|Administrative and support services||$36,910|
Most information clerks work full time. However, part-time work is common for hotel clerks and file clerks.
Clerks who work in lodging and transportation establishments that are open around the clock may work evenings, weekends, and holidays.
Employment of information clerks is projected to show little or no change over the next ten years.
Despite limited employment growth, about 173,100 openings for information clerks are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Most of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.
Projected employment of information clerks varies by occupation. Much of the projected employment growth for hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks and for reservation and transportation ticket agents is due to recovery from the COVID-19 recession of 2020 and is likely to occur early in the projections decade. The increased use of online ordering and reservation systems and self-service ticketing kiosks will limit demand for these workers.
Local governments will continue to need court, municipal, and license clerks to do tasks such as prepare case dockets, draft agendas, and issue permits. Eligibility interviewers will continue to be needed to determine whether government assistance, such as unemployment or Social Security benefits, is appropriate for people applying for it. However, the adoption of technology in data collection and document processing, which enables people to submit online responses and documents, will likely limit demand for interviewers and other clerks.
As organizations combine their administrative functions and continue to expand their use of technology, they will need fewer correspondence clerks, file clerks, order clerks, and human resources assistants. In addition, employment is projected to decline for interviewers, except eligibility and loan, as businesses and medical facilities continue to use online applications or platforms to streamline information collection or other intake processes.
|Occupational Title||Employment, 2021||Projected Employment, 2031||Change, 2021-31|
|Court, municipal, and license clerks||156,800||159,800||2||3,000|
|Eligibility interviewers, government programs||156,900||156,900||0||0|
|Hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks||238,800||273,100||14||34,300|
|Interviewers, except eligibility and loan||176,300||161,700||-8||-14,600|
|Human resources assistants, except payroll and timekeeping||106,100||101,300||-5||-4,800|
|Reservation and transportation ticket agents and travel clerks||109,200||117,300||7||8,100|
|Information and record clerks, all other||165,600||169,800||3||4,200|
A portion of the information on this page is used by permission of the U.S. Department of Labor.