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Secretary vs. Secretariat: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sumera Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Updated on September 21, 2023
"Secretary" typically denotes an individual responsible for administrative tasks, while "Secretariat" refers to a department or organization's administrative office or the personnel working therein.

Key Differences

Secretary typically signifies an individual, often working in an office or organizational setting, handling clerical tasks, correspondence, and other administrative duties. In contrast, Secretariat is the office or establishment where these administrative and clerical tasks are performed, or it may refer to the collective personnel of such an office.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
A Secretary can serve in various capacities, from helping executives manage their schedules to taking meeting minutes. The Secretariat, on the other hand, might encompass a whole team or department dedicated to facilitating administrative procedures, ensuring smooth operations within an organization or institution.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
When referring to official contexts, a Secretary can also mean a person holding a specific post in government, such as the "Secretary of State." Secretariat in international contexts, like the United Nations, signifies the primary administrative office responsible for executing mandates and handling official tasks.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
Many organizations have a Secretary who focuses on specific administrative functions and serves as an essential point of contact. Simultaneously, the Secretariat acts as the central hub, ensuring that all administrative, clerical, and operational duties are streamlined and efficiently handled.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
While both terms relate to administration, the primary distinction is between the individual role of a Secretary and the collective or institutional nature of a Secretariat.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Definition

An individual handling administrative tasks
A department or office handling administrative tasks
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Part of Speech

Noun
Noun
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Contextual Usage

Can denote a specific administrative role or government post
Indicates an administrative office or its personnel
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Grammatical Application

Refers to a person
Refers to a place or group
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Scope

Individual-based
Institution or department-based
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023
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Secretary and Secretariat Definitions

Secretary

An official in a club or organization responsible for correspondence and records.
The club's Secretary sent out membership renewals.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Secretariat

A department or team handling clerical and administrative duties.
The conference Secretariat managed all event logistics.
Sara Rehman
Sep 21, 2023

Secretary

A person who manages correspondence and clerical tasks.
The executive's Secretary organized all appointments.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

Secretariat

The personnel or office responsible for administrative tasks in an organization.
The UN Secretariat is responsible for day-to-day operations.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Secretary

A desk with compartments for writing and storing papers.
She kept her letters in an antique Secretary.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Secretariat

An office or body of administrators and officials.
The global convention had its own dedicated Secretariat.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Secretary

A person employed to handle correspondence, keep files, and do clerical work for another person or an organization.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

A governing body or administrative department, especially in politics or international organizations.
The Secretariat of the treaty ensured compliance by all member states.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Secretary

An officer who keeps records, takes minutes of the meetings, and answers correspondence, as for a company.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

The place or establishment where secretaries work.
The Secretariat was bustling with activity during the summit.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Secretary

An official who presides over an administrative department of state.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

The department administered by a governmental secretary, especially for an international organization.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A desk with a small bookcase on top.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

The office occupied by such a department.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

(obsolete) Someone entrusted with a secret; a confidant.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

The office or position of a governmental secretary.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

(obsolete) Someone employed as a scribe for personal correspondence.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

The office or department of a government secretary.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A person who keeps records, takes notes and handles general clerical work.
I have a personal secretary to help me organize my clients.
The secretary at the school is in charge of communication between parents, students, and staff.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

(Roman Catholicism) A kind of dicastery within the Roman Curia.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

The head of a department of government.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

The office of a secretary; the place where a secretary transacts business, keeps records, etc.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A managerial or leading position in certain non-profit organizations, such as political parties, trade unions, international organizations.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

An administrative unit responsible for maintaining records and other secretarial duties; especially for international organizations
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

(US) A type of desk, secretary desk; a secretaire.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretariat

Thoroughbred that won the triple crown in 1973
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A secretary bird, a bird of the species Sagittarius serpentarius.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

(transitive) To serve as a secretary of.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

One who keeps, or is intrusted with, secrets.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A person employed to write orders, letters, dispatches, public or private papers, records, and the like; an official scribe, amanuensis, or writer; one who attends to correspondence, and transacts other business, for an association, a public body, or an individual.
That which is most of all profitable is acquaintance with the secretaries, and employed men of ambassadors.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

An officer of state whose business is to superintend and manage the affairs of a particular department of government, and who is usually a member of the cabinet or advisory council of the chief executive; as, the secretary of state, who conducts the correspondence and attends to the relations of a government with foreign courts; the secretary of the treasury, who manages the department of finance; the secretary of war, etc.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A piece of furniture, with conveniences for writing and for the arrangement of papers; an escritoire.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

The secretary bird.
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A person who is head of an administrative department of government
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

An assistant who handles correspondence and clerical work for a boss or an organization
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A person to whom a secret is entrusted
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

A desk used for writing
Sawaira Riaz
Jan 12, 2023

Secretary

An individual responsible for administrative duties.
The Secretary prepared the meeting agenda.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Secretary

A governmental official leading a specific department.
The Secretary of Defense oversees the nation's military.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

FAQs

Does "Secretariat" only pertain to large organizations?

Not necessarily. Any office or department handling administrative tasks can be termed a "Secretariat."
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Can "Secretary" refer to a piece of furniture?

Yes, a "Secretary" can also be a specific type of desk with compartments.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Can a "Secretary" be a high-ranking official?

Yes, especially in government contexts, like the "Secretary of State."
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

Does every organization have a "Secretary"?

Not necessarily, but many have individuals handling similar roles.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Would a company have multiple "Secretariats"?

Not typically. A "Secretariat" usually refers to a central administrative department or office.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 21, 2023

Is a "Secretary" always a single person?

Typically, yes. It refers to an individual with administrative responsibilities.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 21, 2023

Is "Secretariat" exclusive to global organizations?

No, but it's often used in contexts like the UN. It can refer to administrative offices in various organizations.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

How does a "Secretary" differ from an "Assistant"?

Both handle administrative tasks, but "Secretary" often implies more specialized or official roles.
Janet White
Sep 21, 2023

Is the "Secretariat" only about administrative tasks?

Primarily, but its scope can encompass broader organizational duties and responsibilities.
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023

How is "Secretariat" used in the context of international relations?

It often denotes an administrative office of international
Harlon Moss
Sep 21, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.

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