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Hiring for Front-of-House Positions in Your Restaurant

Hiring Front of House Staff

When it comes to hiring staff for your establishment, you will want to find the best talent to represent your brand. One of the first steps in identifying the right employees for your company is to understand the breakdown for each position. Knowing titles, skill sets, and responsibilities will help ensure you match the right talent with your front-of-house needs. Let’s take a look at what each front-of-house staff should bring to your business.

Cashier

Your cashier will be the person who handles monetary transactions. This person will take payments, and give change back to patrons. This is an important job because this role is directly connected to the intake of revenue for your food service establishment. Depending on your type of food service establishment, the cashier may also be the greeter. It is important that the person you’ll hire for this role is trustworthy, people friendly, and good with mathematics.

Cashier Responsibilities

  • Updates price changes in system by referring to price sheets and bulletins.
  • Redeems coupons to apply for discounted purchases.
  • Take payments by accepting cash, check, or charge payments and returning change to customers.
  • Balances cash drawer by counting cash at beginning and end of work shift.
  • Answers pricing related questions.

Helpful Traits for Cashiers & Wait Staff

  • Basic math skills
  • Cash handling experience
  • Excellent people skills
  • Trustworthy

Host or Hostess

The host is responsible for greeting and seating your patrons. He or she can be considered the “face” of your restaurant being the first and last person your customer interacts with. Therefore, it is important that this person represents your company well. The host often sets the tone for how new customers perceive your business so choosing your host wisely is key.

Host Duties

  • Greets each guest that enters the establishment personally.
  • Directs guest to seating area, ensuring the area is appropriate (child friendly, non-smoker, indoor,outdoor, etc).
  • Places menus on the table, ensure the quantity of menus is sufficient to cater to the number of guests.

Helpful Traits for Hosts

  • Ability to communicate effectively
  • Organizational skills
  • Excellent people skills
  • Pleasant personality/ smile

Waiter or Waitress

The waitress is who your customer will have the most interaction with during his or her visit at your establishment. This staff member will take orders from and serve your customer, ensuring they get their needs taken care of both quickly and accurately. The server plays a critical role, and can make or break a customer’s impression of your organization. Therefore, you will want to look for someone with waiting experience, which is quick on their feet, patient, and accommodating.

Wait Staff Responsibilities

  • Takes customer orders and communicate them to back-of-house staff.
  • Checks identification to enforce minimum age requirements when serving alcoholic beverages.
  • Notifies customers of menu item specials.
  • Provides customers with general information such as directions to local areas, etc.
  • Prints itemized bill and accept payments from diner.

Helpful Traits for Waiters & Waitresses

  • Upbeat, friendly demeanor
  • Good attention to detail
  • Quick-thinking

Bus Person

Your bus person will restock the dining room, clear and reset the tables when customers leave. The bus person may assist wait staff by serving guest’s water, or bread before being greeting by the waiter. At other times the bus person may check on restroom cleanliness, sweep floors and handle other general cleaning duties.

Bussers Responsibilities

  • Ensures cleanliness and sanitation of dining areas, tables, and chairs.
  • Keeps the dining room stocked with small ware, flatware, and condiments.
  • Consistently maintains adequate supplies.
  • Prepares beverage required for service to assist waiters. Beverages typically include coffee, sweet tea and water.

Helpful Traits for Bussers

  • Ability to kneel
  • Works well with others
  • Polite/ Friendly attitude

Bartender

The bartender in your restaurant, bar , or tavern will mix and prepare alcoholic drinks and beverages. Your bartender will need to be well informed so that he or she can give guests detailed information about drink specials, and drink tastes and ingredients. This person is typically required to have a bartending license or serving permit.

Bartender Responsibilities

  • Verifies ID of customers to confirm legal alcohol consumption age
  • Accepts orders from waiters/waitress, or directly from customers at the bar
  • Inputs drink orders accurately.
  • Follow standard recipes and measurements to serve alcoholic drinks in accordance to guidelines.
  • Mixes and garnishes cocktails according to specifications

Helpful Traits for Bartenders

  • Outgoing personality
  • Detail oriented
  • Ability to multi-task

Bar-backs

The bar –back can be viewed as the bartender’s assistant. He or she will make runs that the bartender may not be able to tend to immediately, while at the fore front serving customers. Your bar back may go to the back of the house to grab items that need to be restocked at the bar.

Bar Back Responsibilities

  • Keeps back up liquor and coolers well stocked.
  • Makes runs to the storage area for alcohol when the bartender is running low.
  • Changes kegs as necessary.
  • Wipes down bar tops to maintain cleanliness as old customers leave and new ones come in.

    Helpful Traits

  • Similar to a bartender's helpful traits
  • Team oriented
  • Willing to learn
  • Energetic personality

Delivery Drivers

The delivery driver is the liason between your establishment and your customers at home. For this reason, you want to hire someone who will represent the brand well outside of the establishment, be timely, and a safe driver. Delivery drivers may assist with small tasks in-store such as taking incoming calls, or restocking items during slow periods. But the primary task of this person is to deliver food items safely, timely, and accurately.

Delivery Driver Responsibilities

  • Safely follows route and delivers items in a timely manner
  • Loads and unloads items from vehicle
  • Ensures that vehicle is in safe operating condition by checking maintenance regularly
  • Ensure that all delivery receipts are signed.
  • Answers order related questions.

Helpful Traits for Delivery Drivers

  • Responsible
  • Cash handling experience
  • Excellent people skills
  • Trustworthy

Now that you understand the duties, skills, and traits of front-of-house employees, you can feel confident knowing how to hire top talent for your establishment. When interviewing candidates for your front-of-house, ask the appropriate questions to gain insight on how they handle tough situations, if they are a people person, and how they work in a fast-paced environment. Talented employees come in all shapes and sizes so don’t be afraid to look for high school and college students, retirees, or working class individuals seeking extra side income. All of these demographics can bring the innate talents and skill sets needed to give your restaurant the friendly face it needs to best serve your clientele.

Tags: FOH, Management

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