• WA-Alliance - what is this, why did this change happen? Does it replace the WA-Summit Advisory Council, how will it be structured? Who will be responsible for the WA-Summit?

    The World Administrators Alliance (WA-Alliance) is a formal membership structure (a Non-Profit Trade (profession) Association) with a Governing Council (Council) which replaced the former WA-Summit Advisory Council.

    The  Advisory Council was an informal body that managed the WA-Summit event and the between summits research.

    The new WA-Alliance Council as a formal membership body is able to be more responsive, resilient, is better able to advocate for Administrative Professionals globally, and manage the between Summit research/tasks.

    The WA-Alliance is responsible for the WA-Summit.

    The WA-Alliance has a formalised membership body incorporating:

    • researching/finalising outcomes from WA-Summit discussions
    • managing WA-Summit events
    • fundraising/sponsorship
    • an advisory body to provide input and support.


    More information on these changes can be found on the WA-Alliance webpage and the WA-Alliance website

  • Why Administrators, why Alliance?

    The term “administrators” speaks to the scope of practices and activities surrounding our roles as well as those essential to conducting business. For those in the administrative profession a significant issue is the 160+ titles both within countries and across the globe. Each country usually has its own preferred titles (for example: Personal or Executive Assistant, Office, Business or Management Assistant). These titles can appear intimidating to those who undertake general administration, for example administrative assistant, filing clerk, receptionist, etc, who do not hold such titles. However, whatever the title and tasks, the core of all these roles is administration. To administration, a range of other tasks from reception to accounts to full strategic partner reporting to a C-suite manager are added.

    If we look at a another profession having one word to describe a role for example:

    • An Accountant – this identifies that a person works with figures and finances but titles might be Chief Financial Officer, chartered accountant, forensic accountant, tax advisor, fund manager. However internationally they will be recognised for their skills base as an “accountant” generally.
    • Using Administrator in a similar context does not take away from our own specific title or the preferred titles within our country. Note also that the “Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme” is a very influential and respected position


    It is very hard to be heard as a cohesive group internationally if we do not have a single word which generally encompasses our work. Be proud of the overarching title as well as our own personal position title.

    The new structure, WA-Alliance, needed to differentiate from the WA-Summit event so we ran a survey with the 2018 Delegates and chose a different but linked name. Some responses we received in our survey on the name choice are:

    • Alliance is an important word that gives the idea of this union of professionals around the world
    • Alliance is more global, inclusive, open
    • Alliance says what we are – an alliance of nations
    • The definition of Alliance covers exactly what the organisation model should be; relationship among people who have joined together to achieve a common purpose.

    These responses mirror the thinking of the Task Force who worked on replacing the former WA-Summit Advisory Council.

  • What is the World Administrators Summit?

    The World Administrators Summit (WA-Summit) is the 2-day working meeting of administrative professionals held every 2 years. The purpose of this global meeting is to “… guide, influence and positively develop the profession”. 

    This meeting is focused on discussing topics of importance to all administrative professionals around the world. The topics are gathered through a global survey of those working in the profession, seeking matters that are reflective of the critical issues facing all administrative/office professionals.

    The topics discussed lead to an Outcomes document and feed into Administra The World Action Plan which is for administrative professional associations/networks and individuals. Administra is a set of guidelines and not rules.

  • Where and when is the next WA-Summit?

    The 12th WA-Summit On-Line will be held on 15 and 22 October 2022, 1pm – 5pm CET.


  • Who can attend the WA-Summit?

    Each country may have no more than five Delegates. Formally appointed Delegates from every country in the world may attend.

    Most Delegates come from the professional association or network in that country for example: International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP), the International Management Assistants (IMA), in the UK the PA Hub, or the Association of Administrative Professionals New Zealand Inc (AAPNZ). However some countries do not have an administrative professional association or network, or their association/network does not wish to participate. Then an individual may apply to be a country Delegate.

    The Delegate Credentialing Form (in both Word and PDF) must be fully and properly completed before being submitted to the Chairman of the WA-Alliance Council for acceptance and all criteria must be met, including sending through a photograph.

  • How can Associations select Delegates for the WA-Summit?

    Each country may have five Delegates.

    It is up to each Association/Network how they select their Delegates. However, it can be helpful to hear how others have done this.

    • Some Associations/Networks believe that the leader and up to four others from the management group for that association should be the Delegates
    • Some Associations/Networks believe that there are members who have a specific interest in either the topics or the international collaboration skills who would make good Delegates
    • Some Associations/Networks do not wish to be involved at all and in that case if an individual wishes to apply to be a Delegate, to date that has been accepted.
    • Some countries do not have an Association/Network and so again an individual has been able to apply to be a Delegate.


    However, being a Delegate is a very good role for an Immediate Past President who brings experience, knowledge and understanding to the role but does not have the same responsibility for the day-to-day running of the Association/Network.

    We strongly suggest that at least one of those five Delegates is part of a succession plan so that information about the WA-Summit and WA-Alliance is gathered, developed and continues through the professional body rather than stopping with those who attend each two years.

    Many countries only have one or two Delegates and that is perfectly fine as well. Again it is worth noting the importance of succession for each country so knowledge is not lost to the Association/Network.


  • How can Associations share the information about the WA-Summit?

    Associations/Networks have their own methods of sharing information with their members. However, when it comes to information about the WA-Summit and the WA-Alliance it can sometimes, incorrectly, be seen as information specifically for those who run the association/network, therefore not of great interest or importance to the members of that association.

    The information from the WA-Alliance and the WA-Summit is really important and valuable to every individual administrative/office professional. The topics being discussed should be discussed widely among Associations’/Networks’ members as it is their thoughts, experiences, and views, collected through a survey, which have led to those topics being selected.

    Once the topics have been selected and the Agenda formed, the Delegates are asked to research those topics within their own associations and networks. Members should also ask their Association/Network leaders for information on the topics and seek to provide input.

    Please note that each country is also asked to report on a specific goal from AdministraThis goal will be advised when the Agenda is sent out. Country Delegates should follow the same process listed below to gather information within their own country as regards that goal, so their report is representative of their country’s views.

    The main aim is to ensure that all Delegates bring a well informed, truly representative opinion on the topics to the discussions at the summit. Associations/Networks can do this in a many ways, often using a combination of approaches. They can:

    • discuss and seek feedback on the topic at face-to-face regular meetings
    • convene specific focus groups from Association/Network members to discuss the topics
    • develop a survey (can be electronic e.g. Survey Monkey for free if under 10 questions, or written/emailed) to gather information from members
    • conduct a phone survey of members
    • ask members to seek input from administrative/office professionals they work with, if they are not members.


    After consultation, the Delegates within a country need to meet, discuss the information they have gathered, and determine how they are going to contribute to the discussions or vote on a specific matter. The Delegates discussing and agreeing is critical as where voting is required, each country has only one vote, the Delegation Leader for a country is the only person who can vote.

    Once the summit has completed, a document is prepared setting out the outcomes reached at the discussions. The outcomes reached at the WA-Summit, or further research undertaken by Task Forces under the guidance of the WA-Alliance, are aimed at supporting the individual administrative/office professional in their day-to-day working life.

    The “Outcomes” documents can be found on our website and the link is shared with; all Delegates, all associations/networks, and it is requested that they share it with all their members and wider networks.


  • Why should I or my country attend the WA-Summit?

    The WA-Summit is an international platform where peer-to-peer discussions are held on relevant topics which impact those working in the administrative profession. Hear from Delegates who attended the 10th WA-Summit in 2018 (Why Attend?).

    It provides an opportunity for each individual administrative professional to be heard and contribute to the recognition of their work as a profession. For the individual their participation is called for through responding to surveys and ensuring their country is present to represent their views.

    The discussions at a WA-Summit lead to outcomes which includes research to support those outcomes such as: the reports from the 2021 discussions:

    1. Harassment in the workplace Report
    2. Identity and Image of the Profession
    3. The WA-Alliance Skills Set Matrix Report – there are many resources to assist you with the Global Skills Matrix (marketing name) which you should access to determine where you are in your role and if you wish to have a pathway then what you need to achieve that.

  • What countries have attended the WA-Summit?

    The 10th WA-Summit 2018 in Frankfurt – 22 countries participated with 41 Delegates.

    Due to Covid-19 the 11th WA-Summit was had to be split into two parts:

    1. The on-line Business Meeting 30 August 2020 – 28 Countries.
    2. The on-line Summit held on 8th & 15th May 2021 – 27 Countries.


    You can see the countries names on the Delegates Page .

  • Who are the members of the WA-Alliance? Will the WA-Alliance be made up of representatives from around the world? How will they be selected and for how long?

    The members of the WA-Alliance will come from around the world. They need to apply, meet the criteria of the WA-Alliance and then pay a membership fee. You can see more about this on the WA-Alliance website.

    You can check out these three documents which were the initial communications and a structure diagram, setting out the initial intent of moving from an information structure to a formal body.

    1. Delegate Communication WASummit Future – this was shared with Delegates prior to the WASummit in 2018 in Frankfurt. It was discussed and agreed that the ideas needed to be followed up.
    2. Future Model WASummit Consultation Document – this was sent out early 2019 to all the 2018 Delegates along with a survey on the process and the name. These FAQ’s came from that survey and these answers have now been updated.
    3. WAAlliance Diagram Vs2 – this was an initial model of how the WA-Alliance may be structured.


    The Members of the WA-Alliance Council provide wide geographical representation, are elected for a two year term, and were nominated and voted on by the Members of the WA-Alliance at the inaugural Annual General Meeting.

  • Where will the WA-Alliance be located and how will it be funded?

    The WA-Alliance is global with Council members from several countries – currently Netherlands, USA, Canada, UK, Trinidad & Tobago, New Zealand and Australia.

    The United States of America was chosen as the country to register the WA-Alliance primarily as the USA’s Non-Profit Trade Association is aimed at organisations founded and funded by associations and/or organisations representing a specific industry (trade); in this case administrators.

    It is recognised that many countries in the world will have some law which the WA-Alliance could have registered under, but it was felt the USA best suited the needs of the WA-Alliance, especially for international monetary transactions.

    The WA-Summit Advisory Council had been a loose voluntary body, usually “based” in the country where the Chairman of the Advisory Council resided. With the WA-Alliance being registered as a Non-Profit Trade Association in the USA, it will have a stable base. However no single country (including the USA) will have control over the WA-Alliance.

    The WA-Alliance required funding to cover initial set-up and on-going costs, for example:

    • setting up the Trade Association (provided through IAAP’s Foundation)
    • website set-up and maintenance fees
    • Membership package which includes survey functions
    • Accounting software (global and based in the “cloud”)
    • research assistance, reviewers for research reports.


    Previously many of the above costs were funded through the personal generosity of the individuals involved. With a paid membership base the WA-Alliance Council can now budget and cover many of the costs required. The WA-Alliance requires an ongoing diverse funding model likely to include sponsorships, business partners, association membership, etc.

  • General Questions about the WA-Alliance

    Could there be a travel fund from the WA-Alliance to support those who could not otherwise attend the WA-Summit?

    This is a great idea and is something that the new WA-Alliance Council will try to work towards for the future. The desire is that every country should be able to send at least one Delegate to every WA-Summit every two years.

    Will the change to the WA-Alliance impact on an individuals relationship with IAAP?

    There is no plan or intention to affect the relationships of any individual with their own country professional association, be it IAAP or any of the others around the world. Nor will it affect any certifications or credentials you gain through your own association

    IAAP’s CAP exam – will there be a global credential to match up with this?

    The WA-Summit in Frankfurt, 2018, agreed to have a task force to work on a Skills Set Matrix. This matrix is to incorporate the data gathered by the International Credentialing Team between 2015 and 2021. The Global Skills Matrix (GSM – rebranded) is now freely available to all. The credentialing side of this huge task we were advised required considerably more work and so that has been put aside in the short-medium term, to ensure that the Global Skills Matrix could be launched in September 2021.

    The GSM has been very well received by companies, HR personnel, recruiters, trainers, associations/networks and individual administrative professionals around the world. Read the Testimonials and Endorsements (scroll down) on our website. This is a document which has the potential to change how you and your role are seen and recognised, to potentially change your working life.

  • Are you looking for new sponsorship for WA-Summit?

    As the WA-Summit is a non-profit making event and is run by dedicated volunteers, sponsorship is very important. The aim of sponsorship is to keep the cost of the WA-Summit registration down so that each country can afford to attend and can consider sending their full complement of three delegates. Without sponsorship this would not be possible. Sponsors get coverage in the countries that attend, in 2021 that was 27 countries from around the world. They also get exposure through both the WA-Summit and the WA-Alliance website and through our long-term business partnership with Executive Support Magazine.