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Waiting Staff Job Description

Waiting Staff Job Description

Considering a career as a waitress / waiter? Here are the answers to commonly asked questions:

Duties, Responsibilities & Skills

What do waiting staff do?

Depending on the type of client, our waiting staff usually perform many of the following tasks:

  • Greeting and serving customers in a professional, warm, friendly and genuine manner
  • Preparing and serving a range of beverages and foods in line with client requirements
  • Maintaining highest standards at all times, setting up meeting rooms or conference rooms etc.

What is a Server’s job description?

Food servers perform a variety of tasks, including greeting customers and answering questions, setting tables, preparing the food, stocking supplies, serving customers, charging people for their food, cleaning tables and counters etc.

What are the main duties and responsibilities of a Waiter / Waitress?

  • Greeting guests, taking orders and serving food and beverages to guests
  • Care about customer satisfaction and deliver the optimal client service experience
  • Serving guests in a friendly, welcoming and efficient manner while maintaining a clean and safe work environment
  • Help answer questions and make suggestions regarding food and beverage choices and related items
  • Always report on time and in proper and impeccably clean uniform

What skills are needed to be a Waiter / Waitress?

  • Good verbal communication skills and high awareness of customer service
  • Being friendly yet professional
  • Having high energy and stamina, with an ability to work for long hours standing
  • Being a team player with an ability to resolve conflict and take criticism
  • Patience and an ability to promote the menu in line with customer needs are highly valued
  • Good attention to detail and punctuality

How do you show responsibility?

  • Always be on time and in the right uniform
  • If you finish your tasks, talk to your manager and ask if there are any additional tasks that you can work on
  • Look out for colleagues who need help
  • Be proactive
  • Always be kind and considerate to customers and colleagues

Waiting Staff Dress Code

What is the correct dress code for food handling staff?

Ideally, staff who handle and prepare unwrapped food should wear a clean apron or tabard over their clothes. (Clothes can bring dirt and bacteria into food handling areas). Staff should not wear watches or jewelry when preparing food.

Why do waiting staff wear black?

The easy answer is because black doesn’t show stains and it also looks smart. Black works well for both men and women, and most companies want a consistent look for their waiting staff attire. Black is also considered unobtrusive and so doesn’t distract the guests from their conversation.

Do servers have to wear their hair up?

It is good practice for staff to have clean hair and to keep it tied back and / or wear a suitable head covering, e.g. a hat or hairnet, especially when handling unwrapped food.

Are servers allowed to wear nail polish?

Employees who handle food are not allowed to wear fingernail polish or artificial fingernails as they pose a contamination hazard for the food.

Waiting Staff Career

How do I become a Waiter / Waitress with no experience?

Have a positive attitude, undertake some volunteer work in a restaurant, obtain some glowing personal references, dress the part and hold yourself with confidence.

How can I be the best waiter?

  • Be personable and honest. If you forget something, apologise, resolve it quickly and move on. If you don’t know something, tell guests that you’ll find out
  • Be efficient and proactive - always be thinking several moves ahead
  • Keep your cool. As a server, you’re going to get a lot coming at you, including rude customers, demanding managers and lazy kitchen staff. Avoid the temptation to fall into the trap of yelling and being rude to one another. Stay calm and focus on the next step to get your job done

What are the different types of waiters / waitress?

  • Hospitality assistant or host
  • Casual waiting staff
  • Fine dining waiting staff
  • Silver service waiting staff

What are the 4 types of food service delivery systems?

  • Cart French Service: Servers plate the finished foods onto individual plates and serve them to guests from the right
  • Banquet French Service: Each food item is served by the server from platters to their individual plates. The server, using two large silver forks in his or her serving hand, places the food on the guests’ plates
  • Butlered Service: Food is presented on trays, from the left of the guest, by servers with utensils available for seated guests to serve themselves
  • Russian (Silver) Service: Servers put the foods on platters and then pass the platters at tableside. Guests help themselves to the food and assemble their own plates

What are the pros and cons to waiting?

  • Pros
    • Lots of variety. Serving tables means keeping active, carrying trays, bringing plates to tables, etc.
    • You’re around people, so there’s lots of opportunity for social interactions
    • Flexibility in hours - a lot of restaurants allow servers to cover for each other as long as they have the same level of skills and experience. Having this degree of flexibility is great if you want a night off or have plans with family
    • You don’t have to bring your work home with you
    • Once you’ve worked as a Waiter / Waitress, you can pretty much work anywhere as a server
  • Cons
    • Having to work weekends and / or late hours
    • After a while it does take a toll on you
    • Having to deal with difficult customers

If you’re looking to become a Waiter / Waitress, take a look at our jobs and apply today.

Our Offices

Greycoat Lumleys London office covers jobs in London, South of England and International
Greycoat Lumleys Buxton office covers jobs in the majority of counties in the North of England and Wales
Greycoat Lumleys Edinburgh office covers jobs in Scotland