DegreeDiary

A Career in Catering?

The last decade has seen the rise and rise of the TV chef. Catering is cool with reality shows and cookery shows on every channel. With the economy finally staging a recovery, hotels and restaurants are finally seeing an upturn in footfall so it’s no surprise that the catering industry is attracting new talent including graduates hoping to fast-track their way into management.

It’s anticipated that the demand for suitably qualified graduates for management schemes in the catering and hospitality sector is set to increase with an estimated 70,000 more jobs being created over the next five years.

What job?

Well, there’s plenty of choice for those pursuing a career in catering; hotel or restaurant manager, event manager, promotions or operational roles, Sommelier, wine buyer or chef.

If you like the idea of a more hands-on role in the kitchens, you don’t need a degree although you will need a lot of additional training. This is the same for roles within the wine industry.

If you want to move into management training within catering and hospitality, you can do so with a more generalised degree. Business management degrees will probably give you an advantage especially if you get a 2:1 or better. Although you might not see yourself working for Burger King in the long term, one of the big fast-food chains might be a good starting point as they do offer some of the best management training courses available for graduates.

What’s it really like?

This is not the easiest of career paths to follow, especially at the start. Late evening work is a given as are most weekends and pressure is immense. There is a lot of top class competition out there and you will have to wear a variety of different hats; customer service, hygiene, quality control, shifts, staff, budgets etc.

Although that sounds bleak, catering and hospitality is one of the most rewarding industries to be a part of. If you make your business a success, you can reap tremendous personal and financial rewards. It certainly is not a boring industry and you will enjoy a variety of challenging roles.

Given the nature of the marketplace and how competitive it is, you should not be surprised to learn that salaries for graduates are pretty low. Trainee managers can usually expect a salary of between £15,000 and £21,000.

So, if you fancy yourself as the next Gordon Ramsay or Jamie Oliver, the opportunities are out there if you are prepared to put in the hard work and dedication required.

Alison Page

About Alison Page

Alison is a small business owner, freelance writer, author and dressage judge. She has degrees in Equine Science and Business Studies. Read her full story at http://www.theladywriter.co.uk

Alison Page

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