The general responsibilities of a veterinary receptionist include collecting payments, answering phones, dispensing medication, scheduling appointments and selling behind-the-counter items. The specific responsibilities of a veterinary receptionist vary from office to office.
Veterinary receptionists are often expected to be able to differentiate between a routine office visit and an emergency. The receptionist acts as the link between clients and medical staff, making it essential that she is able to communicate emergencies to the veterinary doctor or technician.
Additional responsibilities may include calling to confirm appointments, locking up at the end of the day, keeping the waiting area clean and collecting and sending mail.
A veterinary receptionist should be familiar with general office tools such as computers, telephones, scheduling programs, stamp machines and bookkeeping software. The receptionist should also have good people skills and be able to communicate effectively with clients and other members of staff.
Veterinary receptionists are generally not required to have special skills or education other than basic receptionist skills. These may include typing skills and customer service experience. A rudimentary understanding of household pets and their care may be useful in finding a job. It is necessary for the receptionist to be comfortable dealing with pets because some offices require receptionists to weigh pets or check their progress.
Receptionists are advised to read job descriptions carefully before applying in order to understand exactly what the position entails.