Restaurant recruiters and hiring managers receive dozens or hundreds of resumes from people who want to work in challenging restaurant careers, but many people fail to provide professional resumes and decrease their hiring chances. Experts estimate that 1.9 million new jobs will open by 2016 in the hospitality industry, but competition for server, cook, bartender and manager positions has become increasingly intense due to celebrity-chef visibility, trendy dining popularity, and social sharing of favored dining spots.
Organize a Simple but Complete Chronological Account
Managers view hundreds of resumes, so using a clear format and providing a simple, chronological account help hiring managers appraise each restaurant job resume more favorably. You want to make sure that they can find the information as quickly and easily as possible.
- Avoid fluff and concentrate on work experience that applies to the position.
- Distinguish the resume by using perfect spelling and grammar.
- Show ambition but temper advancement aspirations by demonstrating a willingness to learn and follow directions.
- Effective mission statements, which should consist of a single sentence, reveal ambition, clarity of thought and conciseness of expression.
- Give the resume a taste of your personality. Normally, you want to communicate in a subtle manner the most appealing parts of who you are. That may mean small things like font choices or slightly unorthodox formatting. Cooks may mention their best dishes, or bartenders could identify their favorite cocktails. You may use more or less formal diction (although always appropriate and respectful). The key is conveying your personality without overshadowing the content of your application.
Targeting a Resume for the Job
Applying for a job requires doing some research to tailor the restaurant job resume to the type of job that a candidate is seeking. Study the facility’s cuisine, hours and menu if possible and tailor the resume to highlight skills and qualifications that satisfy the job requirements.
- Explain periods of inactivity but never exaggerate work histories to cover long periods of unemployment. Of course, you should focus on what you have done and what you are capable of.
- Target a particular position but explain a willingness to cross-train or seek career advancement. You want to come across as open-minded as possible so that you reach the interview phase.
- FOH workers can impress managers by demonstrating knowledge of food preparation techniques.
- Chefs and kitchen staff can improve their prospects by showing food safety certifications, classroom instruction, previous work with highly regarded chefs, and strong organizational skills for managing kitchens and inventory.
- All restaurant resumes should be adapted to the particular restaurant you are applying to. Normally, that means you will have to modify your resume to address the unique needs of different types of restaurants. For example, 50 table restaurants and 10 table restaurants value different skills for servers. A 50 table restaurant owner will prize efficiency and calm under pressure, while a 10 table restaurant owner will emphasize the ability to connect with customers. The type of restaurant matters so one stock resume will hurt your chances in getting a restaurant job.
Resume for Restaurant Job Template
Keep resumes short, focus on restaurant work, and include all customer-service experience. Some employers prefer people with an educational background, so applicants should provide this basic information in resumes. Organize an effective restaurant job resume by using the following template:
- Mission Statement
Include a clear, focused single-sentence mission statement.
- Create an Outline
Good organization means putting information into an easily understood form. Outlines help to organize education, experience and skills. Summarize qualifications but resist going into too much detail—the goal of a resume is to secure an interview.
- Use Headings, Subheadings and Bulleted Lists
Develop outlines that relate to the mission statement and create headlines, subheads and lists to highlight information and make resumes easy to scan. Write concise summaries for each entry.
- Focus on Job Position
Hospitality jobs include FOH, BOH and management jobs. Tailor restaurant job resumes to focus on supporting qualifications. People skills and cash-register experience prove important for FOH positions but practical training and organizational skills have more appeal for BOH jobs. Include nonrelated experience at the end of the resume in summarized form.
- Use Word and Plain Text Formats
Save resumes in plain text format and Word. Word is by far the most commonly shared writing program, and using specialized formats could cause hiring managers to abandon resumes that they have difficulties loading or accessing. Always keep a plain text version to send electronically.
- Review Collective Resources to Complement Mission Statement
Every word should have a distinct purpose to inform managers about qualifications, education and skills. Show ambition through word usage and develop the resume to showcase practical work traits and learning abilities.
Basic Restaurant Resume Format:
- Mission Statement
- Experience and Training
- Special Skills
- Nonrelated Work Experience
A Restaurant Job Resume for Upscale Dining
Upscale restaurant job applicants should demonstrate knowledge of food and wine. Speaking a second language is an excellent skill to highlight when applying to upscale restaurants that attract tourists. Showing experience with POS systems, dealing with consumers, and interacting with business and civic leaders provides a strong hiring incentive for decision-makers considering candidates for upscale dining operations.
Restaurant managers prioritize resumes based on qualifications, clarity, organization and work ambition. Design a restaurant job resume to meet these criteria to improve hiring chances or land an interview.