Food preparation supervisors are responsible for overseeing and coordinating the activities of employees involved with preparing and serving food. They provide training to employees in all aspects of food preparation. Food preparation supervisors establish procedures, assign tasks and work stations to all the members of the team. They are also responsible for evaluating food preparers and making sure they meet quality standards and are proficient at their tasks. Evaluating problems and creating solutions for issues such as wasting food and insufficient productivity are important aspects of the occupation.
Food preparing supervisors collaborate with other supervisors and workers, such as chefs and cooks regarding menus, serving arrangements and other issues. Food preparation supervisors are hired to work in restaurants and grocery stores which have food preparation facilities. They are also employed in other related settings.
The workers they supervise perform a variety of tasks such as preparing vegetables and other foods, making salads, weighting and measuring ingredients and stirring sauces. Some food preparers cut and grind meats and provide pots and pans for chefs and cooks. They're typically responsible for cleaning the work areas and equipment. The supervisors must make sure all the tasks are performed properly.
- Inspect food supplies
- Provide training in food sanitation and safety procedures
- Make sure food preparers adhere to quality sanitation and safety standards
- Specify food portions
- Create production and time sequences
- Make food requirement estimations
- Inventory control
- Food equipment maintenance and repair
- Hiring and firing employees
- Prevent food theft
- Forecast staff requirements
- Record production and operational data
- Order supplies
Food preparing supervisors should have good communication, training and leaderships skills. Being detailed oriented and effective at planning are important aspects of the occupation. In addition, knowledge is needed regarding raw food materials, quality control, production processes and food handling techniques.
Some restaurants and grocery stores with food preparation facilities provide modern equipment, air conditioning and spacious work areas. Some restaurants, particularly those located in older buildings, often include smaller work areas and do not provide the quality work environment offered in newer restaurants. The quality of the work setting in restaurants may vary by the quantity and type of food being prepared.
Those with experience, are proficient and capable and show leadership abilities have opportunities to rise to a supervisory position. Post-secondary education or vocational training in related areas is also helpful in acquiring a supervisory position. Being proficient with foreign languages can also be a plus with some employers. The strongest competition for employment in the food preparation industry will be for the highest paid positions such as supervisory jobs.
The number of positions for food preparation workers is projected to be plentiful due to the continued growth of the food services industry. The employment of food preparation workers is expected to grow faster than average when compared to the average of all occupations. The demand for food preparation supervisors should also increase. The growth in employment in the industry will occur due to a growing population and the convenience of eating at restaurants.
The need for workers and supervisors in the meals-to-go business, including meals prepared for grocery stores and specialty food stores is expected to growth faster than average. There has also been an increase in demand for healthier made-from-scratch meals. However, during economic recessions, people typically eat at restaurants less often which will decrease the demand for food preparation workers and supervisors.
Education, Certification, and Licensing
Typically, a high school education and experience as a food preparer is required. Some employers may require some vocational training or job-related coursework in subjects such as food safety and food handling procedures, food service management, cost control, purchasing and food/beverage industry operations. Other beneficial courses are nutrition, personnel management, culinary arts and restaurant management.
The primary employers for food preparation supervisors are grocery stores with food preparation facilities, full-service restaurants and limited-service eating venues.
Schools for Supervisors Of Food Preparation And Serving Workers are listed in the Browse Schools Section.