Food Preparation and Serving Manager  What They Do

Just the Facts


Supervises workers engaged in preparing and serving food.

This career is part of the Hospitality and Tourism cluster Restaurants and Food/Beverage Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Trains workers in food preparation, and in service, sanitation, and safety procedures.
  • Compiles and balances cash receipts at the end of the day or shift.
  • Performs various financial activities, such as cash handling, deposit preparation, and payroll.
  • Supervises and participates in kitchen and dining area cleaning activities.
  • Estimates ingredients and supplies required to prepare a recipe.
  • Resolves customer complaints regarding food service.
  • Controls inventories of food, equipment, smallware, and liquor, and reports shortages to designated personnel.
  • Observes and evaluates workers and work procedures to ensure quality standards and service, and completes disciplinary write-ups.
  • Purchases or requisitions supplies and equipment needed to ensure quality and timely delivery of services.
  • Specifies food portions and courses, production and time sequences, and workstation and equipment arrangements.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Overtime work
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Banquet Captain -- Oversees each aspect of a catered event, from the initial planning and assigning duties to each team member, to cleaning the hall.
  • Bar Manager -- Oversees all operations at the bar including staffing, employee schedules, event planning, and staff functions and responsibilities.
  • Caterer -- Provides food for business and social gatherings, such as at weddings, parties, celebrations, picnics, and business meetings.
  • Chef -- Directs and participates in the preparation, seasoning, and cooking of soups, meats, fish, vegetables, salads, desserts, or other foods and may plan and price menu items, order supplies, and keep records and accounts.
  • Head Waiter/Waitress -- Provides the same service to customers as waiters or waitresses, but the supervisor or manager often assigns them other special duties.
  • Sous Chef -- As second in command after the Executive Chef, a sous chef is responsible for planning and directing food preparation in a kitchen.
  • Railroad Dining Car Steward/Stewardess --
  • School Lunch Manager --