Getting your first restaurant job is relatively easy. Restaurants are always looking to recruit fresh blood to
the dark side, but there are a few things you’ll have to prepare to really persuade a hiring
manager that you have enough of a backbone to handle the work.
As they say, presentation is everything so pay attention to these tips and you’ll get a job quicker
than you can figure out how to say Worcester and then spell it correctly.
1 - Get your food handlers card & liquor license
You might be thinking why would you get your certifications before you have a job? Well, I’ll tell
you why — it makes you look good and you need it anyway. Not only will having your
certifications show your ability to anticipate needs, it will give the hiring manager one less thing to worry about once you’re hired. They want to train you and get you going quickly, so it’s important they know you already
have a base knowledge of handling food and alcohol and that they don’t have to get on your
case when you forget to get it within 30 days of employment.
2 - Jazz up your resume
Resumes aren’t that interesting, but yours can become interesting to the hiring manager if you
know what they’re looking for. Start by reading the job description. Unless it's a poorly written
job ad, there will be specific words used to describe the company culture, the open position and
the type of person who would fit in well. Pick up two or three key words and try to emphasize
them within your resume. For example a job ad might say, “Team-player needed for a
high-volume, well known family restaurant.” In this one sentence you already know they want: A
team-player, someone comfortable with high-volume (aka “must be fast”), and someone
personable who can develop relationships with the customers. So focus on those things within
3 - Apply on Poached
The internet has a plethora of job boards, but you only really need to use Poachedjobs.com if you’re looking for a restaurant job. Poached is the number one job board for the food and bev industry and so you’ll not only find a job quickly — you’ll find the best job quickly. On Poached you can apply to as many jobs as you like with
just a click of a button and also track where your applications are at in the hiring process. Hiring
managers can message you via text or email (your preference), so you can get the ball rolling
more quickly than anywhere else.
4 - Prepare for the interview
Once you get asked to interview, practice for the big day. I recommend re-reading
the job description, checking the location of the interview and mapping how you’re going to get
there. Lastly, practice how you might respond to certain questions. There is no way for you to
know exactly what an interviewer might ask you, but there are some common questions like:
How did you hear about us, tell us about yourself and why do you want this position. If you’ve
never worked in a restaurant before, I’d practice talking about how some past experiences
would transfer to the restaurant job you’re applying for and also explain why you want to work
After you take these tips into consideration and then practice, you’ll be seating guests, bussing
tables or washing dishes in no time! Working in the food and beverage business can be
rewarding and fun, so good luck!
Ashley Lange is a content writer for Poachedjobs.com, the #1 job site for the food and drink industry. Poached is devoted to making the process of hiring and being hired faster, easier and more thorough — so you can do it well and less often.