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How to Create a Server Resume (Skills, Examples)

Isabel ThottamAuthor

How to Create a Server Resume (Skills, Examples)

Getting a server job at a restaurant is not as easy as one may think. Restaurant owners want to hire servers with previous experience and a particular set of skills. The job market is competitive in the food industry and an easy way to make yourself stand out among other applications is to present the hiring manager with a strong resume that highlights your experience and skills as a server.

Hiring managers are used to reading resumes, having possibly seen hundreds from other candidates vying for the same position. Your resume is your introduction to a business, so it’s important to present a resume that is easy to read and contains the right information a hiring manager will look for. Keep reading to learn how to make your resume stand out, what information to include, and how to improve your chances of landing a server job.

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Professional Experience

A strong resume should clearly indicate that you have server experience and the desire to learn. When creating a resume, you should highlight any previous professional experience with bullet points that explain your knowledge of the role and indicate why you are a viable candidate.

A common rule of thumb for resume writing is to include experience from only the last ten years. In other words, you don’t need to list every job you’ve ever had. Rather, focus on your most recent positions and accomplishments, such as being named the employee of the month or receiving a promotion. Moreover, if you worked at your previous job for more than a year, be sure to indicate the timeframe - hiring managers often look at how long you stayed in your previous positions.

When writing bullet points about your professional experience, it’s best to keep them short, but use keywords to highlight your responsibilities. A good tactic is to look at the job description for the position you are applying for and include the same words they use to describe the job duties when detailing your work experience. This approach will make you appear a valuable candidate because these words will stand out to the hiring manager looking to see that your experience matches their expectations for the job.

Personal Information

Along with showcasing your professional experience on your resume, it’s also important to explain any personal experience relevant to the position. Doing so can help make you a more appealing candidate as the hiring manager will often consider work outside your professional jobs as supplemental experience. 

In the same way that you wrote out your professional experience, use bullet points to indicate how the personal experiences you include complement your professional experience. For example, if you are applying to be a server at a restaurant, include any personal experience involving food or talking with customers as relevant examples. Whether you have volunteered in a soup kitchen, hosted your family’s annual reunion dinner, or catered an event for a friend or school gathering, you can utilize personal experiences to highlight similar skills to indicate your readiness for the job.

Skills

A hiring manager may skim your resume and look directly at the skills you list, which is why you want to ensure your resume includes the skill sets they want to see. Here’s an example:

SKILLS

  • Providing customer service with a positive, friendly attitude

  • Imputing orders in Point of Sale Systems and processing credit card transactions

  • Handling and counting cash

  • Adaptable, collaborative team player

For a server position, consider listing skills that show your experience with specific point-of-sale systems, such as imputing orders, printing order receipts, or using credit card processors and handling cash sales.

You can also include any niche skills you obtained from your prior experiences, such as barista or bartending, plating food, opening champagne bottles, or any other relevant customer service skills. 

When applying to work as a server, it’s also a good idea to make your resume stronger by highlighting your restaurant-specific skills. These skills might include answering phones, operating sales, ordering or reservation software programs, cleaning commercial equipment, re-stocking or labeling inventory, and setting or decorating tables.

Here's an example of a server resume to help you get started: 

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Sample Resume

OLIVIA JONES

330-416-5770 ojones@gmail.com

723 E 45th St, Los Angeles, CA 98102

SUMMARY: Server with 6 years of experience working in fast-paced restaurants, catering events, and casual café environments. My career began with a position as a busser and food runner, diligently working my way up to being a server. I am hard working, reliable, and have great customer service skills. My priority is to always maintain a positive attitude and be a team player with a flexible schedule.

WORK EXPERIENCE

SERVER 

Madres Kitchen Catering – Los Angeles, CA 

May 2020 – Present

  • Punctually arrived for every shift with a positive attitude, ready to work.

  • Greeted all guests in a friendly manner and seated them at their assigned tables.

  • Confirmed orders and served meals with efficient pacing during events.

  • Assisted the manager in training new servers and any additional side work or cleanup.

SERVER

La Tierra Restaurant – Los Angeles, CA

September 2018 – March 2020

  • Provided excellent and friendly customer service when welcoming guests, taking orders, and delivering and removing dishes.

  • Ensured guests enjoyed their experience by listening intently, recommending menu items, being knowledgeable about food preparation and allergens, and checking in with customers in an appropriate and timely manner.

  • Managed orders and financial transactions using the Toast Point of Sale system.

BUSSER & FOOD RUNNER

Samantha’s Cafe – Canton, OH

July 2016 – August 2018

  • Welcomed customers, took drink orders, and assisted with the delivery of food to tables.
  • Promptly cleared dishes and properly cleaned, sanitized, and wiped down tables.
  • Performed any additional work, assisting hostesses and servers as needed.

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If you consider these tactics, you should be able to improve your chances of getting an interview and landing the job. Before you turn the resume in, take a good look to make sure you believe in everything you wrote and that you feel it communicates your qualifications well. Also, have a friend or colleague read it to get a second opinion on whether or not it captures your work history in a professional and relevant manner. 

If you want to further increase your opportunities, consider some other skills that might get your application a second look:

  • Write a customized cover letter explaining your interest and qualifications for the position in greater detail. You’ll increase your chances of having your application read if your cover letter addresses the hiring manager by name. This small detail shows that you took the extra step to look up who the hiring manager for the position is or that you called the restaurant and asked for their name. Hiring managers will see this as a sign that you’re capable of taking initiative.
  • Network with people who work at the restaurant to increase the chance of your name being recognized on your application. If you don’t know anyone who works at the restaurant, you can look to your network of people you have worked with in the past. It’s always possible someone you know might have a connection to the restaurant, so it doesn’t hurt to ask!
  • Go to the restaurant and show you are interested in the position. If you know a place is hiring, you can easily help yourself stand out against other candidates by personally submitting your application. When you arrive at the restaurant, ask the general manager or hiring manager if the position is available. If they are, be ready to quickly pitch yourself: tell them who you are, why you want to work for them, your most recent experience, and something interesting or fun about yourself to help them remember that that spoke with you.
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DISCLAIMER: This information is provided for general informational purposes only, and publication does not constitute an endorsement. Toast does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of any information, text, graphics, links, or other items contained within this content. Toast does not guarantee you will achieve any specific results if you follow any advice herein. It may be advisable for you to consult with a professional such as a lawyer, accountant, or business advisor for advice specific to your situation.