Whether you're a career server or just putting yourself through school, getting a job waiting tables can be a rewarding job. Of course, no one will argue that being a server is an easy job, but you can earn a good living waiting tables. Different restaurants or bars have different levels of required experience and education, and a casual waiter's history will be different from that of a career server. Here are some tips for writing a resume for a server position, regardless of your level of commitment.
Part of a server's job is to upsell to patrons: you need to learn to be a good salesperson in order to drive up the average ticket price. That means adding wine or dessert to a table or upgrading their steak from a New York strip to a filet mignon without adding any high pressure tactics. This not only increases your tips, but it makes you appear more knowledgeable and puts a better face on the restaurant, in addition to increasing its revenue. You need to show on your resume that you are capable of making these ticket increases on a regular basis. Put numbers on your resume that reflect your salesmanship.
You're going to want to list the names and positions you've held at other local restaurants, because the hiring manager will want to know what kind of setting you've waited tables in before. Generally, the manager should be familiar with the restaurant, the type of food, the level of expertise and professionalism needed by the waiters, and the general atmosphere of the restaurants you worked at to get a better idea of your attitude and level of skill as a server.
Did you graduate bartending school? Do you have a food safety handling certificate? What about first aid certification? These are all helpful certifications to have as a waiter, and they should go on your resume. If you have certifications or qualifications that allow you to bring more to the table (so to speak) as a waiter, make sure they're on your resume, along with dates earned, and where appropriate, certificate numbers for verification purposes.
Here is one place where references can be really helpful. Restaurants often hire on a recommendation basis and by word of mouth, so if you're being recommended by someone at the restaurant or by a trusted person in the hospitality industry, it wouldn't hurt to put one line mentioning that you were recommended for the job by that particular person. If asked, provide contact information for verification, but make sure you ask the reference if it's okay for you to give out their information.
Your potential new employer wants to see you in action, so a quick scan of your resume is all you're going to need if you're qualified. Your manager knows what most serving jobs entail, so you don't need huge, lengthy job descriptions of your past server jobs. If you're granted an interview, your smile, handshake, and demeanor will tell the manager if you're right for the job, so don't go overboard on your resume.
Getting a job as a server can be an eye-opening, and potentially lucrative, experience. It's not easy being a server, but once you get good at it, it can be a lot of fun and you could earn a decent living doing it. With these and other tips from LiveCareer's Resume Builder , you'll be able to craft an excellent server resume that will help you get hired.