Finding work in the catering trade often starts with your first job in a restaurant environment. Before you stat, however, you have to think about several issues, including the area you want to specialise in, any talents you may have, the economic state of the marketplace, and of course where you should be looking to find your best working opportunity.
One overriding consideration is that the restaurant sector, as opposed to the catering industry as a whole, is a little better protected in tougher economic conditions. Restaurants themselves may open and close a little faster than in the boom times, but you’ll find that on the whole the average level of eateries, including independents as well as the branded chain operations, tend to remain fairly stable, irregardless of the amount of money in the consumers’ pockets.
This is because restaurants have a lot of margins to play with – they can run promotional offers, alter their opening hours and staffing levels and rotas, trim back on the menu options, and tweak the beverage choices. All of these options give restaurants a valuable element of flexibility.
If you choose to start work in restaurants your target is probably to end up in one of the restaurant management jobs you may see advertised on job boards and in the classifieds. To land one of these coveted restaurant manager jobs, you will have to “earn your stripes”, and that often means starting out as a waitress or kitchen porter, which are the first rungs of the ladder in back of house and font of house, respectively.
So which would you prefer, and which matches your natural skills, Are you good mixing with people, and generally enthusiastic, Then a waiting job is probably the nest place to start. If on the other hand you have as passion for food, enjoy ingredients, and the whole cooking process, then, maybe a back-room position may be a better bet. Whichever route you choose to work your way top a restaurant manager job, you will find the best place to look is one of the specialist catering job boards.