Food service managers work in most fields involving the serving of food, including fast food, fine dining, hotels and resorts, catering businesses, and similar business types involving the preparation and service of prepared foods. In smaller settings, they often are responsible for overseeing the work of all kitchen and service employees. In larger settings, they often work with other managers to ensure smooth overall operation of the business or establishment. Generally, the food service manger is concerned with managing the activities of the serving staff, while kitchen managers are responsible for the directing the efforts of those working in kitchens.
In the course of their activities, depending on the size and type of food service establishment and industry in which they work, food service managers often are responsible for hiring servers, scheduling, training, ensuring the appearance and maintenance of the dining area, and other related duties. At times, they may be responsible for the operation of the kitchen area as well; in smaller business, they may also perform work as servers, cooks, and in other necessary roles. In the process of fulfilling these duties, it can be expected that the food service manager also focus strongly on the quality and speed of service delivered to customers, as well as deal with any issues that may arise. In most cases, a food service manager's duties are performed onsite, although in certain situations, such as catering, these duties are performed at a location other than their business’ physical headquarters.
Educational requirements for food service managers vary widely; often, the food service manager has risen from the ranks of the wait staff to become a supervisor. Most are expected to have experience in the food service or customer service industry. Generally, as with most employment positions, a high school diploma is required, and some larger or more upscale establishments prefer their food service managers have further education in the field. Promotional opportunities are greater in larger establishments and those with multiple locations, although many reach the position of food service manager by gaining service experience in one business and later moving to another with an opening for the position.
Food Service Manager Tasks
- Maintain food and equipment inventories, and keep inventory records.
- Ensure customer service regarding food quality, service or accommodations.
- Monitor food preparation to ensure that food is prepared and presented in an acceptable manner.
- Count money and make bank deposits, monitor financial transactions.
- Schedule staff hours and assign duties.