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Waitress Resume Examples & Writing Guide [+Skills Template]

Waitress Resume Examples & Writing Guide [+Skills Template]

Whether in a 5-star establishment or the local grill, you have the personality and skills to make a Zagat-worthy waitress. Prove it with the best waitress resume on the menu.

Ready to write a waitress resume that works? You can wipe a spill with one hand, balance a precarious tray with the other, and take a 4-top’s order by memory without a glitch. You’d make a fine addition to the waitstaff team, and you know it. But employers don’t know what you bring to the table.

 

So— 

 

Introduce yourself with a fine waitstaff resume that gives your past experience, restaurant skills, and proud accomplishments on a silver platter.

 

It’s not so hard.

 

You’re about to see a waitressing resume example you can change to fit any waitress position you want. You’ll also get an easy recipe to write a resume for waitress jobs that’ll land 10x more interviews than any other.

 

Here’s a waitress resume example made with our builder:

 

Want to save time and have your resume ready in 5 minutes? Try our resume builder. It’s fast and easy to use. Plus, you’ll get ready-made content to add with one click. See 20+ resume templates and create your resume here.

 

waitress resume templates

Waitress resume made with our builder—See more templates and create your resume here.

 

Before we dig in, here are several other waitress resume examples and restaurant resume guides:

 

Sample Waitress Resume (Text Version)

 

Linda B. Altieri

Experienced Waitress

907-344-0888

linda.b.altieri@me.com

linkedin.com/in/lindabaltieri 

 

Summary

 

Personable waitress with more than 4 years of restaurant experience providing table service at busy dining establishments in the Anchorage business district. Achieved a 99.5% guest satisfaction score or above in each of the past 24 months. Seeking to leverage excellent order recall, friendly service, and the ability to handle multiple tables and groups to become the new waitress at Fabricio’s Fine Foods.

 

Experience

 

Waitress

John’s Fish & Chips, Anchorage, AK

September 2018–October 2020

Key Qualifications & Responsibilities

  • Invited customers into the restaurant in a friendly manner and seated them at appropriate tables.
  • Instructed guests on menu specials, took food and beverage orders, and answered any questions which may have arisen.
  • Paid close attention to dietary and allergic restrictions and remained clean and hygienic throughout all shifts.
  • Recommended perfect beer and meal pairings according to customer tastes and fish of the day.

Key Achievements

  • Maintained 99.5% customer satisfaction rating for 24 months in a row.

 

Waitress & Busser

Jamie’s Bar & Grill, Anchorage, AK

April 2016–September 2018

Key Qualifications & Responsibilities

  • Seated customers in a 150-guest dining establishment at the bar or in the restaurant as requested.
  • Informed dining guests on steak specials and happy hour bar offers.
  • Took food and drink orders from customers and delivered them when appropriate.
  • Bussed tables and reset place settings quickly and effectively.

Key Achievements

  • Achieved “Server of the Month” in August 2017, March 2018, and July 2018.

 

Education 

 

Majoring in Food and Nutrition

University of Alaska Anchorage, Anchorage, AK

Anticipated Completion: 2022

Relevant Coursework: Nutritional Biochemistry, Food And Culture, Medical Nutrition Therapy, Microbiology, Food Service Management, Environmental Science, Nutrition Care Process, Nutritional Journalism, Nutrition and Exercise Physiology. 

 

High School Diploma

Eagle River High School, Anchorage, AK

Completion: 2018

 

Skills

 

  • Friendliness & Personability
  • Written & Verbal Communication Skills
  • Collaborative & Interpersonal Skills
  • Physical Stamina & Strength
  • Food Safety & Personal Hygiene 

 

Courses and Certificates

 

  • Certified Restaurant Server: American Hotel and Lodging Association Educational Institute
  • ServSafe Alcohol Certification: National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation

 

Here’s how to write a waitress resume step-by-step.

 

1. Start With the Right Format for a Waitress Resume

Before you can seat guests and serve them food, you’ll set the table first. In a resume for waitresses, that means formatting correctly before you start. A badly laid-out resume is like a table near the bathroom. Nobody is interested, even at a glance. Good formatting is the first step to getting hired.

 

Here’s how to format a waitress resume template:

  • Resume format: reverse-chronological resume format.
  • Subheadings: standout titles make it easy for restaurant owners to find things quickly.
  • Resume margins: put a 1-inch margin on every edge of your waitressing resume.
  • Resume fonts: choose easy-to-read typefaces.
  • Font size: 11–12 pt for general text, 2–4 points larger for section headings.
  • Line spacing: single line spacing to 1.15.
  • Best resume appearance: give it a menu-like look with lots of white space.
  • File type: PDF resumes work best unless the restaurant’s job ad asks for MS Word.

 

Include these resume parts:

  • Resume header: your name and relevant contact information.
  • Introduction: a quick summary of the best selections from your resume.
  • Work experience: history of your past job duties and achievements, restaurant or otherwise.
  • Education: brief description of academic accomplishments.
  • Skills: short list of your most job-related abilities.
  • Extra sections: certifications, awards, languages, etc. to round it out.

 

Don’t start your waitress resume at the top. Instead, start with easy-to-write resume sections like your work experience. Then come back and add the garnish later.

Are there other resume formats? See our guide: Best Resume Structure

2. Start Your Waitress Resume With Work Experience

 

According to the BLS, waitress jobs should increase by 6% between 2018 and 2028. That’s great, but—too many of those will be at bottom-feeder chains. To beat the other candidates for the best waitress jobs, you need to wow the manager with a perfectly-seasoned work experience section.

 

What’s the recipe?

 

Here’s the best plan to make a work experience section for a waitress resume that works:

  • List your most recent job title first.
  • Write the restaurant’s name, location, and the dates you worked.
  • Include up to 6 bullet points detailing your restaurant job responsibilities.
  • Tailor your resume to personalize it to the waitress job requirements and ad.
  • Include proud achievements using numbers to show the restaurant supervisor that yes, you are that talented.
  • To make your waitress description for resumes more impactful, use the PAR (Problem-Action-Result) formula.
  • Start each entry with action words to be most effective.

 

Here are two waitress resume samples to show those tips in action:

 

Waitress Job Description for a Resume

 

Right

Experience

Waitress

John’s Fish & Chips, Anchorage, AK

September 2018–October 2020

Key Qualifications & Responsibilities

  • Invited customers into the restaurant in a friendly manner and seated them at appropriate tables.
  • Instructed guests on menu specials, took food and beverage orders, and answered any questions which may have arisen.
  • Paid close attention to dietary and allergic restrictions and remained clean and hygienic throughout all shifts.
  • Recommended perfect beer and meal pairings according to customer tastes and fish of the day.

Key Achievements

  • Maintained 99.5% customer satisfaction rating for 24 months in a row.
Wrong

Head Waitress

February 2018–June 2020

La Grenouille, Long Island City, NY

Key Responsibilities

  • Greeted guests as they came in.
  • Provided menus and recommendations.
  • Served French food and wines.

 

You don’t need Gordon Ramsey to explain what’s wrong with the second waitressing resume sample. It doesn’t give details, there are no quantifiable accomplishments, and it doesn’t show professionalism. The first example, however, is a feast for the eyes. It’s tailored, detailed, and uses numbers.

Pro Tip: Don’t wear yourself out by trying to write the perfect resume. If you customize it to the job like I showed above, the restaurant manager will give it rave reviews.

Now—

 

What if you’re applying for a first-time waitressing job? If you’re writing an entry-level resume with no experience (or little experience), don’t panic. You just need to show them you can take what you learned in your past job and use it as a great starting point. To do it, show transferable skills.

 

See these entry-level waitress resume examples:

 

Entry-Level Waitress Resume Samples [Experience]

 

Right

Barista

February 2018–November 2020

Cafe Sashay, Brooklyn, NY

Key Qualifications & Responsibilities

  • Greeted guests to bakery and cafe in a friendly, cheerful manner.
  • Provided coffee and dessert pairing recommendations as necessary.
  • Rang up customers and delivered orders efficiently in a fast-paced cafe setting.

Key Achievements

  • Awarded “Barista of the Month” in both August 2018 and August 2019.
Wrong

Barista

February 2018–November 2020

Cafe Sashay, Brooklyn, NY

Key Responsibilities

  • Took orders and made coffee drinks.
  • Prepared snacks and apps when asked.
  • Charged credit cards when cash wasn’t available.

 

As you can see, this applicant was a barista in her past life. But in the right waitress resume example, she tailored her job responsibilities in a way that’s super-relevant to a restaurant server job. The wrong example might as well read “I’m a barista with no waiting experience.” It all comes down to adding the right resume achievements.

Pro Tip: Should you ever write a 2-page resume? Not for a waitress job. If you can’t describe your career in a single page, the restaurant manager won’t read your resume.

When making a resume in our builder, drag & drop bullet points, skills, and auto-fill the boring stuff. Spell check? Check. Start building your resume here.

When you’re done, Zety’s resume builder will score your resume and tell you exactly how to make it better.

3. Add Your Education (It’s Not That Straightforward!)

 

You don’t need a fancy-shmancy degree to get a job waiting tables. But—you do need to document your education effectively. Otherwise they won’t take your restaurant waitressing resume seriously. When you have plenty of experience, just list your school, degree, and completion date.

 

See this waitress resume example:

 

Cocktail Waitress Resume [Education]

 

Right

Diploma and Certificate in Culinary Arts

The University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL

Completion: 2017

 

But—

 

If you have little waitressing experience, dig deeper in your resume education section, like this:

 

Right

Education 

 

Bachelor of Arts in Food Service Management

University of Massachusetts - Amherst, Amherst, MA

Anticipated Completion: 2021

Relevant Coursework: Culinary Nutrition, Culinary Arts, Restaurant Management and Operations, Hospitality Management, International Cuisines, Advanced Food Service Operations, Food and Beverage Strategies and Logistics, Culinary Fundamentals.

Minor: Culinary Arts

Leadership: Vice President, Student Activities Committee

 

If you’ve got a completed culinary school certificate or college degree, leave your high school off the restaurant resume. Otherwise, add it as a secondary entry below. Also—do you have little or no waitressing experience but a legit education section? Move the education above your work history.

 

That way, your waitress resume gives them the tastiest dish first.

Read up more on adding smarts to your resume: How to List Education on a Resume

4. List Waitress Skills Relevant to the Restaurant and Role

 

Whether you can spin a tray of cocktails on one finger or you have the memory of a dolphin, you’ve got the restaurant skills to be a fine waitress. But—you can’t list every ability you have. Which skills should you add to a resume for waitresses to make your application tempting?

 

For starters, see this list of skills for waitress resumes:

 

Waitress Resume Skills

 

 

But—

 

Here’s how to select the best waitress skills to list on a resume:

 

  1. List all your waitress skills.
  2. Make another skills list of the abilities listed in the restaurant’s job ad.
  3. The matches in both lists are your resume keywords.
  4. Prove them in your bullet points with achievements backed with numbers.
  5. Include both soft skills and hard skills to get the best reception.

 

See this waitress resume example:

 

Say the waitress job posting mentions register operation, friendly service, and efficiency.

 

Then prove your skills like this:

 

Resume for a Waitress [Skills]

 

Right
  • Operated register during busy Friday and Saturday night shifts for 3 years. Took 350+ orders per night. Held register mistakes close to zero.
  • Maintained consistent 95%+ positive ratings for friendliness in customer comment scores.
  • Scored 10% higher than restaurant average for efficiency in quarterly reviews.

 

Experienced? Not experienced? How you’ll list your waitressing skills is very different based on how long you’ve been serving food. See these examples:

 

Waitress Skills Resume Example (Experienced Candidate)

 

Right
  • French Cuisine
  • Credit Card Terminals
  • Food & Wine Pairing
  • Cleanliness & Hygiene
  • Conflict Resolution

 

Waitressing Skills Resume Example (No Experience Candidate)

 

Right
  • Math & Basic Calculations
  • Customer Service Skills
  • Credit Card Terminals
  • Personability & Friendliness
  • Cleanliness & Hygiene

 

As you can see, there are certain waitress resume skills you can pick up anywhere, such as hygiene or conflict resolution.

Read more about adding skills to resumes: 99+ Skills to Add to a Resume (List & Examples)

5. Add Bonus Sections to Your Waitress Resume

 

Imagine you’re serving up a plate of pancakes. You won’t just deliver that fluffy stack as is. It’s the same with your waitress resume. Extra resume sections are the maple syrup, blueberries, and whipped cream on top. They add flavor to your job application and get the manager excited.

 

Here are a few examples of delish additional sections to add on a resume for waitress jobs:

 

Waitress Resume Samples: Extra Sections

 

  1. Resume Licenses & Certifications

 

Food service certifications and food handling licenses show any restaurant manager you’re worth your salt. Here are a few of the best in the industry:

  • ServSafe Food Safety & Food Handler Certification
  • Food Protection Certificate: NYC Health Academy
  • Alcohol Seller and Server Certification
  • Certified Food Protection: Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Professionals (ANFP)
  • Certified Dietary Manager, Certified Food Protection Professional (CDM, CFPP

 

  1. Resume Volunteer Work

 

Have any volunteer experience under your apron? Though unpaid, it can be a great way to show work experience, especially when you don’t have much other real-world working expertise.

 

  1. Second Language on a Resume

 

Do you know another language? Adding your proficiency in a foreign language to a waitressing resume makes a strong impression, especially if it’s particularly relevant to the restaurant (knowledge of French in a French restaurant, Spanish in a Latin American neighborhood, etc.). 

 

  1. Hobbies on a Resume

 

Don’t think your hobbies and interests belong on a waitress resume? Think again. When they relate to restaurant servers, such as your passion for food blogging, add it to your wait staff resume. 

 

  1. Memberships in Trade Organizations

 

Adding your membership in a waitstaff or food service association shows the restaurant supervisor you’re a professional choice. Take a look at these examples:

  • Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals (ANFP)
  • Society for Hospitality and Foodservice Management (SHFM)
  • National Restaurant Association (the other NRA)
  • American Culinary Federation, Inc. (ACF)
  • American Hotel and Lodging Association Educational Institute (AHLA-EI)

 

See these waitress resume samples:

 

Waitress Resume Examples [Other Sections]

 

 

Right

Courses and Certificates

 

  • Certified Restaurant Server: American Hotel and Lodging Association Educational Institute
  • ServSafe Alcohol Certification: National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation
Wrong
  • Minecraft
  • Clubbing

For more possibilities when it comes to additional parts of a resume, see this guide: What to Include on a Resume: 20+ Top Examples

6. Blend the Best Bits Into a Waitress Resume Objective or Summary

 

Let’s take it back to the top. An effective specials board stands just outside the restaurant and lures in hungry guests. Likewise, the right heading statement attracts the restaurant manager and makes her hungry to read more. But there are two flavors: summary or objective.

 

Go over what you’ve written in your waitress resume so far. Locate the most scrumptious morsels—those sure to stand out to a restaurant supervisor that are relevant to this waitstaff job. Select 2 or 3 of the top achievements and skills and use them to construct your heading paragraph.

 

So— 

 

Do you have blisters from years on your feet serving food?

 

Here’s how to write a career summary:

 

  1. Start with an adjective like friendly or efficient.
  2. Add your title (waitress).
  3. List your years of experience (1+, 8, etc.).
  4. Share your goal for the job (Seeking to become the lead waitress...)
  5. Include the restaurant’s name.
  6. Share your most delectable achievements.

 

See these waitress resume summary examples:

 

Waitress Resume Summary

 

Right
Friendly head waitress with over 3 years of experience in French cuisine and fine dining restaurants. Expert knowledge of French wines and wine pairing. 2020 waitress of the year and consistently responsible for over $150,000 in sales every month. Seeking to leverage professional serving skills and native proficiency in French to become the lead waitress at La Sirène.
Wrong
Head waitress with plenty of experience in French cuisine, knowledge of French wines, and fine dining professionalism. Seeking a similar position at any French restaurant in the New York City or northern New Jersey areas.

 

The second one will make them frown like there’s a hair in their pasta. It isn’t tailored to one particular restaurant. It doesn’t give details. Finally, it does not provide numbers to give the restaurant manager an understanding of just how well you performed your waitress duties.

 

Now— 

 

What if you’ve never served tables before?

 

An entry-level waitress resume needs a career objective. Back before credit cards, that meant talking about your hopes and dreams for the job. Don’t do that. Instead, delight the restaurant manager with relevant accomplishments from non-waitressing jobs, from school, or from your life at large.

 

See these waitressing resume examples:

 

Waitress Resume Objective

 

Right
Friendly barista with 2 years of experience serving customers at a busy midtown café. Current bachelor's degree student majoring in food service management. Rang up more than $5,000 in sales per day and awarded the BDP Service Recognition certificate for March 2020. Looking to leverage customer-centric attitude and café skills to become the next waitress at Vaucluse Restaurant.
Wrong
Having just completed a bachelor’s degree in food service management, I’d like to get my foot in the door by starting as a server somewhere in town. I also have experience as a barista, and my customers all are happy with the service I provide.

 

Just like in the waitress resume summary, tailor your objective to this particular restaurant. Give a numbered win to make them hungry for more.

Looking for the full recipe on starting a resume correctly? Look no further: Best Resume Introduction Examples

7. Write a Great Waitress Cover Letter

 

Does your waitress resume need a cover letter? Yes. The cover letter is as important as the tables in a restaurant—and our HR statistics report shows why. Nearly half the hiring managers out there trash resumes without them. Why? An application without a letter looks like job search spam.

 

To write your waitress cover letter:

 

  1. Format your cover letter before you start to write it.
  2. Start your waitress cover letter with the restaurant manager’s name.
  3. Write an enticing cover letter introduction.
  4. Show you understand the job by repeating the job duties.
  5. Put the 2–3 best morsels from your resume in your cover letter.
  6. End your cover letter with a call to action to get the interview.

Read more: How To Write A Cover Letter in 8 Simple Steps and How to Make a Resume: A Step-by-Step Guide

Plus, a great cover letter that matches your resume will give you an advantage over other candidates. You can write it in our cover letter builder here. Here's what it may look like:

 

matching set of resume and cover letter

See more cover letter templates and start writing.

Key Takeaway

 

Here’s a recap of how to write a waitress resume:

  • Format your waitress resume template in reverse-chronological order.
  • Start with your work experience. Prove your 5-star skills with your tastiest achievements.
  • Find waitress skills in the job ad online.
  • Add numbers to show you know a burrito from a barista.
  • Include education and relevant coursework.
  • Add sections for a ServSafe certification or volunteer work.
  • Write a waitress cover letter to land the interview.

 

That’s it! Now, we’d love to hear from you: 

  • What frustrates you about writing a waitressing resume? 
  • Does writing a waitress cover letter make you nervous?
  • Do you have less experience than you think you should?

 

Let’s chat below in the comments, and thanks for reading!

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Tom Gerencer, CPRW
Tom Gerencer, a Certified Professional Résumé Writer (CPRW), is a career expert who has published over 200 in-depth articles on Zety. Since 2016, he has been sharing advice on all things recruitment from writing winning resumes and cover letters to getting a promotion.
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Food Service Resume Examples [with Skills & Job Description]

Food Service Resume Examples [with Skills & Job Description]

A complete guide to writing a food service resume. Get actionable food service resume examples and tips from HR pros! See the best food service resume samples and use them today! In no time, you're going to have a resume for food service jobs better than 9 out of 10 others. Read on and land your new job quick!