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Become A Food Service Director

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Working As A Food Service Director

  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Training and Teaching Others
  • Getting Information
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates
  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Repetitive

  • $58,810

    Average Salary

What Does A Food Service Director Do

A Food Service Director directs and supervises food service for patients, employees, and visitors within an organization. They ensure that services are in compliance with nutritional, safety, sanitation, and quality standards.

How To Become A Food Service Director

Most applicants qualify with a high school diploma and several years of work experience in the food service industry as a cook, waiter or waitress, or counter attendant. Some applicants have received additional training at a community college, technical or vocational school, culinary school, or 4-year college.

Education

Although a bachelor’s degree is not required, some postsecondary education is increasingly preferred for many manager positions, especially at upscale restaurants and hotels. Some food service companies, hotels, and restaurant chains recruit management trainees from college hospitality or food service management programs. These programs may require the participants to work in internships and to have real-life food industry-related experiences in order to graduate.

Many colleges and universities offer bachelor’s degree programs in restaurant and hospitality management or institutional food service management. In addition, numerous community colleges, technical institutes, and other institutions offer programs in the field that lead to an associate’s degree. Some culinary schools offer programs in restaurant management with courses designed for those who want to start and run their own restaurant.

Most programs provide instruction in nutrition, sanitation, and food preparation, as well as courses in accounting, business law, and management. Some programs combine classroom and practical study with internships.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Most food service managers start working in industry-related jobs, such as cooks, waiters and waitresses, or hosts and hostesses. They often spend years working under the direction of an experienced worker, learning the necessary skills before they are promoted to manager positions.

Training

Managers who work for restaurant chains and food service management companies may be required to complete programs that combine classroom instruction and on-the-job training. Topics may include food preparation, sanitation, security, company policies, personnel management, and recordkeeping.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although certification is not required, managers may obtain the Food Protection Managers Certification (FPMC) by passing a food safety exam. The American National Standards Institute accredits institutions that offer the FPMC.

In addition, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation awards the Foodservice Management Professional (FMP) designation, a voluntary certification to managers who meet the following criteria:

  • Have supervisory experience in food service
  • Have specialized training in food safety
  • Pass a multiple-choice exam

The certification attests to professional competence, particularly for managers who learned their skills on the job.

Important Qualities

Business skills. Food service managers, especially those who run their own restaurant, must understand all aspects of the restaurant business. They should know how to budget for supplies, set prices, and manage workers to ensure that the restaurant is profitable.

Communication skills. Food service managers must give clear orders to staff and be able to communicate effectively with employees and customers.

Customer-service skills. Food service managers must be courteous and attentive when dealing with patrons. Satisfying customers’ dining needs is critical to business success and ensures customer loyalty.

Detail oriented. Managers deal with many different types of activities. They ensure that there is enough food to serve to customers, they maintain financial records, and they ensure that the food meets health and safety standards.

Leadership skills. Managers must establish good working relationships to maintain a productive work environment. Carrying out this task may involve motivating workers and leading by example.

Organizational skills. Food service managers keep track of many different schedules, budgets, and staff. Their job becomes more complex as the size of the restaurant or food service facility increases.

Physical stamina. Managers, especially those who run their own restaurant, often work long shifts and sometimes spend entire evenings on their feet helping to serve customers.

Problem-solving skills. Managers need to be able to resolve personnel issues and customer-related problems.

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Food Service Director jobs

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Food Service Director Demographics

Gender

  • Male

    54.4%
  • Female

    44.0%
  • Unknown

    1.6%

Ethnicity

  • White

    83.6%
  • Hispanic or Latino

    9.1%
  • Asian

    5.5%
  • Unknown

    1.4%
  • Black or African American

    0.6%
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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

    57.0%
  • French

    12.9%
  • Italian

    6.5%
  • Chinese

    5.4%
  • German

    4.3%
  • Arabic

    4.3%
  • Thai

    3.2%
  • Mandarin

    2.2%
  • Korean

    1.1%
  • Cantonese

    1.1%
  • Japanese

    1.1%
  • Greek

    1.1%
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Real Food Service Director Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Food Services Director MDM Hotel Group Ltd/Miami Dadeland Marriott Hotel Miami, FL Jun 15, 2015 $86,000
Food Service Director Fig & Olive USA Inc. Los Angeles, CA Feb 01, 2011 $75,000
Assistant Director of Dining Services The President and Trustees of Williams College Williamstown, MA Jan 17, 2013 $72,446 -
$82,000
Food Service Director 212 Lafayette Associates LLC New York, NY Aug 12, 2016 $70,958
Food Service Director 212 Lafayette Associates LLC New York, NY Oct 14, 2016 $70,958
Food Service Director Bradley Academy Goodyear, AZ Sep 14, 2016 $70,346
Food Service Director Old Bridge Management Corporation Dale City, VA Dec 15, 2010 $70,000 -
$75,000
Senior Food Service Director Aramark Corporation Philadelphia, PA Aug 27, 2011 $67,480
Food Service Director Rocky Creek Retirement Properties, Inc. Tampa, FL Sep 21, 2013 $66,500
Food Service Director Fig & Olive USA Inc. Los Angeles, CA Feb 01, 2011 $65,000
Director of Dining Services Compass Group USA Inc. Emporia, KS Aug 15, 2016 $65,000
Food Service Director Aramark Healthcare Support Services LLC Plattsburgh, NY Oct 01, 2010 $65,000 -
$80,000
Food Service Director-Retail Aramark Campus, LLC Washington, DC Oct 01, 2010 $64,018
Director of Dining Services Compass Group USA Inc. Emporia, KS Oct 09, 2016 $61,050
Director of Dining Services Compass Group USA Inc. Emporia, KS Aug 21, 2016 $61,050
Associate Director of Dining Services The President and Trustees of Williams College Williamstown, MA Jan 17, 2010 $60,154 -
$65,154
Food Services Director Riceit LLC Dallas, TX Jan 10, 2016 $60,000
Food Service Director Lori's Diner International San Francisco, CA Apr 03, 2013 $59,301
Food Service Director Rocky Creek Retirement Properties, Inc. Tampa, FL Sep 21, 2010 $58,677
Director of Dining Services Kandle Dining Services, Inc. NC May 07, 2015 $58,436
Food Services Director China Town Inc.(Joseph Yang) Conway, AR May 03, 2011 $55,245
Food Safety Services Director GIC Trade, Inc. Alexandria, VA Sep 15, 2012 $55,000
Food Service Director Water Under Lock, Inc. Anchorage, AK Oct 22, 2015 $54,471
Director of Dining Services Compass Group USA Inc. Hialeah Gardens, FL Nov 07, 2015 $54,000
Director of Dining Services Compass Group USA Inc. Hialeah Gardens, FL Mar 09, 2015 $54,000
Director of Dining Services Met II Hotel, LLC Miami, FL Jun 15, 2010 $53,000
Director of Dining Services Kandle Dining Services, Inc. NC May 07, 2015 $52,488
Food Service Director & Executive Chef East India Co., LLC Portland, OR Sep 06, 2014 $52,175

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Top Skills for A Food Service Director

MenuPlanningFoodServiceOperationsFoodSafetyKitchenOperationsMealServiceBedFacilityFinancialReportsPayrollRecordsFoodCostCustomerServicePSuperviseFoodProductionSpecialEventsFoodPreparationInventoryControlFoodServiceDepartmentDailyOperationsLaborCostCustomerSatisfaction

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Top Food Service Director Skills

  1. Menu Planning
  2. Food Service Operations
  3. Food Safety
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Placed all orders and menu planning as well as inventory and overseeing training
  • Managed daily food service operations.
  • Assure that food safety, food handling and food temperatures are in compliance with regulations and are monitored and recorded.
  • Conducted ordering and cost analysis for all dining and kitchen operations to include an inventory of forty to sixty thousand dollars.
  • Directed meal service for patients, cafeteria, catering and vending areas.

Top Food Service Director Employers

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