Food and Beverage Serving and Related Workers Career VideoOn October 19, 2019 by Raul Dinwiddie
Food service workers perform customer service, food preparation, and cleaning duties… in food service establishments from fast food restaurants to hospitals and hotels. Counter attendants and baristas take orders, process payments, and serve food at fast food restaurants, snack bars, cafeterias, movie theaters, and coffee shops. They heat simple food items and assemble salads or sandwiches. Counter attendants also fill beverage orders and may prepare specialties, such as milkshakes and ice cream sundaes. Dining room and cafeteria attendants, also called bussers, clean and set tables, remove dirty dishes, and keep serving areas stocked with trays, dishes, and silverware. They may also fill water glasses and distribute dishes to diners. Bartender helpers clean bar equipment and glasses. These workers spend most of the time on their feet and often carry heavy trays. During busy dining periods, they are under pressure to serve customers quickly and efficiently. Minor injuries such as slips and burns are common. To reduce risks, workers often wear gloves, aprons, or nonslip shoes. Part-time work, seasonal work, and early morning or late evening hours are common… especially for fast food workers. Workers serving alcohol generally must be 18 years of age or older. Most food and beverage service workers receive short-term, on-the-job training. There are no formal educational requirements.