Blueprints for your Profession

The 2018 Blueprint for the future role of the PA and EA will be officially launched on 5 September 2018 by PAFSA at its Annual PA Summit.  The Blueprint features 25 authoritative futurists both local and international,  4 academics from 4 leading universities from South Africa as well as 4 experts in the field of international impact on the Admin/PA/EA profession. The gem of the publication is the participation of 18 PAs giving their perspectives on how they view their role in the future workplace and the digital age.

This is the 3rd Blueprint which we will launch, the previous 2 are featured below.

Previous Editions

First Edition - Sold Out
First Edition - Sold Out
Second Edition
Second Edition

In the absence of an official Council for the profession, the publishers of CareerSuccess magazine (who were later to establish the association PAFSA) decided in 1995, together with South African members of the secretarial/admin profession to study the working world of the secretary and formulate a career-path based on designations and respective responsibilities.

The document was to take the name of Blueprint. This publication was printed and copies were sent to secretarial associations all over the world.

Six years later, the world of the secretary was ‘disrupted’ significantly as it had been in the seventies with the advent of the Word Processor among other new technological tools. With the change of century, more technological tools arrived and the secretarial profession was one of the most affected in terms of innovations to the way work was produced. It became clear that a new Blueprint was required to update the secretarial profession and ensure that the new reality was portrayed, and some forecasting needed to be penned down. And so the 2001 edition of the Blueprint was produced.

This year, 2018, marks the dawn of another significant disruption, and the next ten years will see the profession catapult itself into a new reality. The 2018 edition is currently being prepared and the PA of the Year 2017 ‘tribe’ is heavily involved in making it a reality. Various professionals are being interviewed by these six PAs: Heidi Stiger, Linda van Noordwyk, Natalie Bassa, Nadia Williams-Mabaso, Milicent Chanetsa and Shantal Chetty.

PAFSA looks forward to a truly ground breaking result of their findings.

More information from PAFSA HO on 011 616 7401.

Contents of 2001 Blueprint edition


Chapter 1: The Preface What is this Blueprint about?

Chapter 2: The new world of work

Chapter 3: Introduction by the committee

Chapter 4: Overview of global developments

4.1 World Wide Web
4.2 Wireless Technology
4.3 Innovation

  • Instant gratification
  • Hot-desking
  • Cocooning and SOHO
  • Human-friendly office building

4.4 Creativity

  • Everyone can be creative
  • Handling personal resistance to change
  • When others fear change

4.5 Multiculturalism in the workplace

  • Facing the challenge
  • Handling resistance
  • Making multi-national teams work
  • Origin of research


Chapter 1: IT, the 21st Century and secretarial work

1.1 Technology at work in the modern office

  • The technologies of the future

1.2 The impact of this technology on secretarial tasks/work methodology .

Chapter 2: IT and its impact on the secretarial profession.

2.1 Job specifications will change
2.2 Designations will change
2.3 Performance appraisals need to be reviewed

Chapter 3: The Role and the job

Critical components to the success of a 21st Century Secretary

3.1 Knowledge
3.2 Personality and character attributes
3.3 Experience
3.4 Performance skills and job profile.

Chapter 4: The Career: From Secretary to… ?

4.1 The recognised levels or strata
4.2 The emerging trends

Chapter 5: Designations

5.1 The traditional company
5.2 The progressive company

  • Writing a job profile

Chapter 6: Career events

6.1 Obtaining entry-level qualifications
6.2 Getting a job
6.3 Doing courses
6.4 Getting certified as a professional
6.5 Belonging to an Association
6.6 In-house Forums
6.7 Receiving own professional magazine
6.8 Mentoring
6.9 Being promoted
6.10 Winning an award
6.11 Secretaries Day & Week
6.12 Research & Surveys

Chapter 7: Training

7.1 Formal and informal training
7.2 CPS®
7.3 Need for continual learning

Chapter 8: Codes of Conduct.

8.1 Code of Conduct for a Professional Secretary
8.2 Code of Ethics for Administrative Professionals
8.3 Code of Conduct for a Professional Secretary attending events

Chapter 9: Temping

Chapter 10: Awards, rewards and recognition

10.1 Types of awards
10.2 Criteria for awards
10.3 Recognition as a reward


Chapter 1: Resources

Chapter 2: Contacts for associations internationally


Appendix 1: The performance appraisal samples

Appendix 2: Career path as per first Blueprint

Appendix 3: Profiles

Contents of 1995 edition – See Part 4, Annex 2 of 2001 edition

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