How to Write a Chef Resume
When creating a chef resume, it can be challenging to showcase your culinary & management skills to the maximum capacity. It is a tricky subject to work with as it is absurd to simply write out all the different dishes and cuisines you know how to cook or all the kitchen management skills you are proficient at.
So how will your chef skills get the recognition it needs?
We know that the work of a chef is much more than just serving food. It may come off as a bit strange, but it is due to management and innovatory skills that a chef moves forward in their career.
If you are a chef at a loss of what to write in your Culinary Resume, we’ve got you covered. Here are 5 tips to make your Chef’s resume shine.
Chef Resume Format
To be a well-known chef takes time and effort, dedicating your time at a local restaurant first and then working your way up. As time goes on, your experiences will become refined and more valuable.
For this reason, a chef’s resume is best written in the reverse chronological resume format. You can do this by listing your most recent work experience first and going backward.
It is the industry standard, is recruiter-friendly, and compliant with the applicant tracking system (ATS), a software that is used by recruiters to screen through resumes faster. Check-out these examples of resume layouts.
In your chef resume, the summary section is the first piece of information that describes your career trajectory, so make sure that it is loaded with the important information.
Here is where you can impress the recruiter to stay on your resume. By categorizing information and maintaining a good cluster of work experience, awards, or honors, you can achieve an eye-catching summary.
In about 4-5 lines, you can write your resume summary by:
- Using concise sentences that are not complicated in structure
- Starting with power verbs instead of first-person pronouns like I or We
- Writing your achievements in cause-effect methodology
- Quantifying your accomplishments and listing any honors or accolades
Being a comprehensive brief or your entire career trajectory, draft it engagingly.
It can be quite an exhaustive list if a chef decides to list all of their skills. The key idea here is to categorize information effectively and give an umbrella term for a certain group of skills.
Some skills you can mention are:
- Culinary expertise
- Menu Update
- Hygiene and Sanitation
- Recipe Diversification
- Quality Control
- Product Rotation
- Budget Management
- Training & Mentoring Staff
- Inventory & POS Systems
- Off-site Event Experience
One important point to note is that it is better to list them as individual skills than as verbs. For example, Recipe Diversification sounds miles better than Diversifying Recipes.
Now, is this not a more justifiable list of skills for a chef? You can add a lot more by assessing your areas of expertise and capitalizing on that!
Though there are plenty of chefs with a prerequisite degree in culinary arts, most chefs make the transition from other jobs to cooking out of passion or the will to explore.
Now that we place value in subject-specific education, if one chef has a degree in culinary arts and another chef has two or three certifications in french pastry, a pastry shop will consider the other person more due to their detailed expertise on the matter.
It does not matter if they are theory classes from Udemy or full-fledged baking courses from a culinary institute, list your certifications in the following format:
Certification | Certifying Authority | Time period
You can also use these certifications to list any achievements or awards you might have received.
Your work experience section can include full-time, part-time, or internship opportunities unless you want to separate them into different sections.
Instead of drafting a wall of text, there are certain ways in which you can enhance the readability of your resume. Some of them are:
Try to maintain a cause-effect methodology and wrap up an idea in one sentence. Try not to overexplain and keep it concise.
You can use multiple one-liners and provide bullet points if you have multiple achievements in one area but try to skimp down on sentence length.
Start with Impactful Power-Verbs
Instead of starting with first-person pronouns like I or we, you can begin your sentences directly with power verbs such as Conducted, Executed, Spearheaded, and so on, as it denotes authority, management, and a degree of responsibility straight away.
Note these two sentences. On the one hand, we have a normal-looking sentence:
* I helped the Mexican cuisine team and increased daily productivity
On the flip side, here is an elevated version:
* Supervised Mexican cuisine team to achieve a 15% increase in daily productivity
Grouping and Highlighting
You can achieve a far more readable resume by categorizing information, providing titles, and highlighting any important information. Doing this will help the recruiter understand your career trajectory, and it does not get lost in the wall of text.
You might have plenty of skills as a chef, but knowing how to utilize them on a resume is what will get you the job you have been searching for. Here’s what you take from this blog before you start writing your chef resume:
- Use the reverse chronological resume format to list your experiences from the most recent and backward
- Summarize your resume by using short sentences written in a cause-effect relation
- Add all your certifications in the designated section by using the given format and list any achievements in another, if required
- Do not repeat your skills and group common skills under a bucket to make way for other skills as well
- List your work experience in a bulleted list and categorize them by the function you undertook
By following these tips and matching them with your job description, the chef coat at your favorite hotel is not impossible to get after all!