What is a catering assistant?

Catering assistants prepare food, stock supplies, and clean work areas. They support caterers and chefs to prepare food for customers and keep the kitchen operating smoothly. They serve food and beverages at special events hosted by catering companies, such as weddings, parties and banquets.

How to become a catering assistant?

To become a catering assistant, you could do a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree. Useful subjects include business and hospitality management, culinary arts or culinary management, and hotel and catering management.

You could also take professional catering qualifications at college then move into management. You could also do a Level 4 Diploma in Hospitality Management and find work as a trainee catering assistant.

Catering assistant duties

Catering assistant duties are diverse and depend on the employer and specialty, but some responsibilities are common to most:

  • Clean the kitchen, including washing kitchen appliances, work surfaces, floors and walls
  • Carry out basic food hygiene preparation tasks
  • Ensure chefs are equipped with the food and tools they need
  • Setting up dining and buffet areas as per the catering manager’s instructions
  • Ensuring all tableware and chafing dishes are properly cleaned and sanitized before each catering event
  • Taking inventory of ingredients and catering supplies and ordering new stock as required
  • Assisting in all duties related to customer billing

Catering assistant skills

To be an effective catering assistant, you’ll need certain skills and competencies. The following are often cited in job vacancies:

  • Sound knowledge of food health and safety regulations
  • The ability to work in a fast-paced environment
  • The ability to work as part of a team
  • Excellent organizational and problem-solving skills
  • Effective communication skills
  • Exceptional customer service skills

How to find a catering assistant job

These jobs are advertised online, in local newspapers and at your local jobcentre. To find all the catering assistant jobs near you, you need to:

  • Search for catering assistant jobs on popular job websites such as; Indeed, Total Jobs and CV Library
  • Use the DWP’s Find A Job Service
  • Check local newspapers and local Facebook groups, especially groups dedicated to local jobs

Catering Assistant Job Titles

When you search for catering assistant jobs online, be aware that the jobs might be advertised using a different job title. Popular job titles for catering assistant jobs include;

  • Food service assistant
  • Restaurant assistant
  • Kitchen assistant