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How to Write a ​​Kitchen Manager Job Description (Duties, Responsibilities)

Grace JidounAuthor

How to Write a Kitchen Manager Job Description (Duties, Responsibilities)

Whether it’s a Michelin-starred restaurant or a corporate chain, most medium to large eating establishments have a Kitchen Manager. The presence of a Kitchen Manager signals to staff and customers alike that the restauranteur values organization and professionalism in the back of the house. 

As the General Manager of the kitchen, this person takes much of the procedural and personnel responsibilities off the shoulders of the chef and sous chef so they can focus on the food. The Kitchen Manager is typically in charge of hiring and firing kitchen staff, optimizing and streamlining procedures and food prep, and managing inventory. Knowledge of first aid (in case of burns or cuts) and safety procedures also fall into the Kitchen Manager’s job description.

Kitchen Managers at the top of their game embody a unique mix of skills: Culinary expertise, a flair for management, and kitchen acumen. But the most important trait is being conscientious. Top managers make it a priority to scrutinize everything that goes on in the kitchen, from ingredient quality and food safety to the plating of the final dish. Ultimately, the main goal of the Kitchen Manager is to ensure that customers have a wonderful dining experience.

List of Duties for the Job

Manage kitchen staff

The Kitchen Manager oversees the kitchen staff, so it’s not some cook-for-yourself free-for-all. You may know that old phrase, “too many cooks spoil the broth.” In restaurants with large kitchen teams, each cook is responsible for running a particular part of the food preparation. For instance, a butcher handles the meat, a Poissonnier handles fish, and so on. 

The Kitchen Manager ensures that each cook performs their job according to the chef’s specifications. This includes checking food temperatures, observing proper plating, and jumping in to debone or sear when necessary.

Scheduling, hiring, and retention

Kitchen managers must know how to recruit, interview, hire, and train great kitchen staff. This is no easy feat; since the pandemic, the turnover rate in professional kitchens has been high. 

The top Kitchen Managers work hard to attract and keep good workers by casting wide nets when hiring, implementing reasonable schedules, and cross-training among food prep staff. Creating a good work environment for the back of the house translates to happier employees and, ultimately, a better customer experience.

Maintain kitchen inventory

Having the proper ingredients and kitchen tools on hand is essential to running a successful kitchen. The Manager is in charge of food costs and optimizing the inventory, which means they seek out the best ingredients, throw away old food, purchase new equipment and utensils, and check every delivery. 

Additionally, Kitchen Managers are in charge of storing everything properly, making sure that Madagascar chocolate gets into a low-moisture room. In short, they are kitchen curators, constantly fine-tuning the physical inventory.

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Kitchen Manager Job Description Sample

To make it easier to create a Kitchen Manager job description, here’s a sample you can use.


Job Title: Kitchen Manager

Salary: $55,000 to $75,000 per year

Tip Income: No

Schedule: Full-Time (40 hours per week). Tuesday – Saturday.

Role: You are an outstanding manager with significant culinary experience who will supervise the daily kitchen operations of our restaurant. As the Kitchen Manager, you will demonstrate a hands-on approach to management and safety, ensuring our kitchen team adheres to the highest standards of quality.

Duties:

  • A positive leader with excellent communication skills
  • Knowledgeable of all kitchen operations
  • Supervise food prep and cooking
  • Supervise, coach, and motivate kitchen employees
  • Maintain high-performance standards
  • Train employees and manage schedules
  • Keep weekly and monthly cost reports
  • Maintain sanitation and safety standards in the kitchen
  • Minimum three years experience in a professional kitchen

Tips for Writing Effective Job Descriptions

  • Use inclusive language in your job description to reach the broadest possible candidate pool.
  • Highlight access to opportunities and your restaurant's positive working environment and culture. A good cultural fit is increasingly important to job seekers, particularly for management positions.
  • Consider the ideal candidate profile for your restaurant and avoid generic descriptions of Kitchen Manager jobs. What skills are essential for your unique kitchen?

Conclusion

It’s no surprise that many restaurants require at least three to five years of experience to be a Kitchen Manager, as this position is the operational engine of your kitchen. During your interview process, ask candidates for specific examples of how they’ve previously managed kitchens and staff. When finding the right candidate, consider promoting from within and solicit referrals from trusted employees.

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