Waiters and Waitresses

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About the Job

Take orders and serve food and beverages to patrons at tables in dining establishment.

It is also Called

  • Banquet Captain
  • Banquet Server
  • Banquet Waiter/Waitress
  • Bar Waiter/Waitress
  • Bartender
  • Buffet Waiter/Waitress
  • Captain Waiter
  • Car Hop
  • Cashier and Waiter/Waitress
  • Club Waiter/Waitress

What They Do

  • Check with customers to ensure that they are enjoying their meals and take action to correct any problems.
  • Collect payments from customers.
  • Write patrons' food orders on order slips, memorize orders, or enter orders into computers for transmittal to kitchen staff.
  • Prepare checks that itemize and total meal costs and sales taxes.
  • Take orders from patrons for food or beverages.
  • Check patrons' identification to ensure that they meet minimum age requirements for consumption of alcoholic beverages.
  • Serve food or beverages to patrons, and prepare or serve specialty dishes at tables as required.
  • Present menus to patrons and answer questions about menu items, making recommendations upon request.
  • Clean tables or counters after patrons have finished dining.
  • Prepare hot, cold, and mixed drinks for patrons, and chill bottles of wine.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: SEC.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Social interests, but also prefer Enterprising and Conventional environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Support and Achievement in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Food Production - Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Education Required

Some of these occupations may require a high school diploma or GED certificate.

LMI Region

Wages

In 2013, the average annual wage in California was $22,490 with most people making between $17,340 and $35,040

Outlook

2.58%
avg. annual growth

During 2010, this occupation employed approximately 231,200 people in California. It is projected that there will be 290,800 employed in 2020.

This occupation will have about 5,970 openings due to growth and about 11,540 replacement openings for approximately 17,510 total annual openings.