What types of jobs are there in the Hospitality and Catering industry?

The short answer? Great ones! Plus some unusual (and exciting) hospitality and catering jobs you’d never expect…

Here are just a few of the roles you can explore with a hospitality and catering career, from waiting on tables to inventing new ingredients. Find out more about their pay, perks, training opportunities and how to get into them!

Counter Service Assistant

Perks of the job: You can add customer service skills and cash handling to your CV in a job you can find anywhere you live in the UK. Employers see this on your CV and know you’re proactive and ready to learn and grow.

Pay: Around £12-19,000 a year depending on experience, employer and location. Hospitality and catering apprenticeships are available to take your career to the next level and help you enter management more quickly.

Young Professional Skills: Communication, self-management

In a nutshell: You could be a coffee shop barista or serving delicatessen food in a large supermarket. It’s your role to get behind the counter and serve food and drink to customers – and you’ll often handle money and offer advice on the produce available, too. It can fit into your studies if you work part-time – and could lead to promotions like becoming a team leader.

Waiting Staff

Perks of the job: As well as adding customer service to your CV, you get an insider’s view of what it takes to build the brand and vibe of a restaurant, from customer types to menu choices and prices. Plus there’s all the networking with potential contacts. Everyone needs to eat, so you’ll find waiting service jobs available across the UK. One final tip: you might also get tips.

Pay: Around £12-27,000 a year depending on experience, employer and location. Hospitality and catering apprenticeships are available to take your career to the next level and help you enter management more quickly.

Young Professional Skills: Communication, self-management, teamwork, problem solving

In a nutshell: You could be working in a restaurant, gastropub or hotel to serve food and drink to seated customers.  You’ll answer customer queries, explain menu choices and ensure the eating areas are clean and tidy – all while looking presentable and giving the best possible customer service.

Restaurant Manager

Perks of the job: You get to shape a restaurant according to your vision, and use a huge range of skills – from gastronomy knowledge to people skills and business savvy – to build the restaurant brand. In a restaurant chain you could progress to become a regional manager.

Pay: Around £18-45,000 a year depending on experience and location. Hospitality and catering management apprenticeships are available to help you soak up what you need to know about the business side of things – and get management experience more quickly.

Young Professional Skills: Leadership, communication, self-belief, problem solving, teamwork, self-management, negotiation

In a nutshell: Once you’re managing a restaurant you can expect every day to be packed with activity and decision-making. From planning menus and meeting food and drink suppliers to hiring and training staff and organising their rotas, your life is a busy one – but you get to look around the restaurant and enjoy the fruits of your success, right in front of you.

Catering Manager

Perks of the job: Love socialising and getting hands-on with events? Your little black book of contacts will be full of names and there’s a good chance your phone will never stop buzzing! Your clients will all want different once-in-a-lifetime events, from conferences to weddings. As a result, your working days will be packed with variety, and you’ll meet all kinds of people on the job.

Pay: Around £19-40,000 a year depending on experience and location. If you have A-levels or the equivalent, many big restaurant and hotel chains offer management training schemes straight from school to help you learn the ropes.

Young Professional Skills: Communication, negotiation, leadership, self-management, self-belief

In a nutshell: Your job is to offer catering services, and you could do this in just one location – like a restaurant, school or hospital – or in many venues, especially if you work in a contract-based catering organisation. Your job is to manage the budget and staff to plan menus, source supplies, consider things like set and decorations and so much more. Whatever it takes to get the food and drink just right – you’re up for the challenge.

Food Manufacturing Inspector

Perks of the job: Health and safety is big business, with more companies and organisations everywhere appreciating its importance. Health and safety in the world of food and drink is obviously a must-have, so your skills are both important and in-demand! You can get started as a school leaver with GCSEs or their equivalent, and there are lots of opportunities to train up and get deeper into the world of food, safety and science.  

Pay: Around £15-30,000 a year depending on experience and location. If you specialise further in either health and safety or food science, you can open a wide range of career doors and command higher salaries.

Young Professional Skills: Communication, self-management, self-belief, problem solving

In a nutshell: The food industry is getting increasingly hi-tech in its bid to feed more people tastier and healthier food for less. But is that food still safe? It’s your job to make sure all the companies producing food are doing it in a safe and hygienic way. You need to make sure their food is safe to eat and as good as it looks. The job itself is varied and depends on your experience and employer. However, you could be doing anything from checking food labels for accuracy to using your IT skills to analyse food samples and data.

Food Technologist

Perks of the job: If someone asks you what you do at a party you can tell them you invent new flavours as your job. They’ll think you’re Willy Wonka.  You have an important role in food production with a healthy salary to match. The everyberry-flavour icing on the cake is that there’s lots of training available to help you develop your skills. For example, you could do a food technology apprenticeship or apply for a foundation degree or HND in food technology or food science to get started.

Pay: Around £20-45,000 a year depending on experience and location. If you specialise in food science, you can take on bigger projects, more responsibilities and command higher salaries.

Young Professional Skills: Communication, self-management, self-belief, problem solving

In a nutshell: When crisp companies hold competitions asking you to design your own flavour, what flavour would YOU design to excite the taste buds and sell to as many people as possible? As a food technologist you’ll tweak and invent new recipes, flavours and even ingredients. You could be working for supermarkets, research hubs (like universities and government) or food manufacturers. You can expect to carry out experiments and work with IT to log data and analyse it.

There are so many roles available, with hospitality and catering apprenticeships (and degrees) to help you on your way.

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