There’s more to bartending than pouring beers and refilling bowls of pretzels. Today, a bartender is expected to master dozens of cocktails, understand the ins and outs of various brews, perhaps even concoct a few of their own signature drinks. They must also have excellent customer service skills.
Finally, most bartending jobs also require other skills and duties. Bartenders are often responsible for dealing with food and beverage vendors, helping with carryout orders, and other functions.
That’s a lot, but there’s good news. A good bartender working at a great spot can easily make a couple hundred dollars a night. Some top bartenders even make up to six-figures per year or even more!
But to get there, you have to first land and ace an interview. That means writing a great resume. Let’s start with a few tips. Later we’ll share a great resume example for bartenders.
Customize Your Resume According to The Bar’s Needs
Every bartending job is different. Your key to getting in the door is proving that you can meet the needs of the specific position that interests you. For example, one job may need someone with fine dining experience, and weekend availability. Another bar may be in search of a daytime bartender who also has plenty of experience dealing with food and beverage suppliers, placing orders, and maintaining inventory. Use the job description, then modify your resume accordingly.
Use Relevant Action Words to Highlight Your Experience
Whether your resume is first viewed by a hiring manager, or applicant tracking software, some keywords will really help your resume get a second look. These power words and phrases show that you either have bartending experience or that you have skills that can make you a great bartender trainee. See if any of the following apply to you:
If you specialize in any specific drinks, styles, or products, mention these as well. This might include ales, ciders, single malt scotches, ryes, and martinis.
Share Your Certifications
Depending on the regulations where you live, you may need to have a special certification that allows you to serve alcohol, and accompanying food. This may be an alcohol server certification, food service worker certification, or something else. You may even have a certification from a bartending school or hospitality program. In any case, if a certification is mandatory, put yours at or near the top of your resume. Emphasize it in bold print as well. That certification may be the thing that gets your resume noticed.
Emphasize The Right Skills in Your Non Related Work Experience
While many people do pursue bartending as a full-time career, others use the work as income as they attend school or to supplement other jobs. It’s pretty common for bartending applications to have little or no experience. If this is your situation, you’ll want to mine your past job experience for elements that contribute to your potential as a bartender in training. These skills include:
- Making and adhering to schedules
- Customer service
- Negotiating and conflict management
Show Your Food Service Skills if You Have Them
In the foodservice industry, turnover is rampant. Some of the most valued employees are the ones who are flexible in terms of schedule and skills. If you’re a versatile bartender who can jump behind the line to do some food prep, bus tables, or help with some managerial duties, that’s a real winning combination. Add both your FOH and BOH skills to your resume.
Resume Example for a Bartender (Word version)
A Resume Example for Bartenders (text version)
111 Main St.
Cloverleaf, CA 91122
L.Bartender@barmail.comExperienced bartender with more than three years of experience working in gastropubs, microbreweries, and wine bars. Current food service sanitation and alcohol servers certification issued by the California Food and Beverage authority. Have an in-depth understanding of the local craft beer scene, fine wines, single malt cocktails, including food pairing recommendations
Mastery of More Than 100 Traditional And Modern Cocktails
BOH Back Up Availability
Food And Wine Pairings
Understanding of The Southern California Wine And Microbrewery Scenes
The Fallen Dove Brewery – Los Angeles, CA
June 2018 – Present
Weekend Bartender and Assistant Bar Manager
Worked as a bartender in the tasting room/restaurant at the Fallen Dove Brewery, voted the best new microbrewery in southern California in 2018. Duties include training new bartenders, working as lead bartender during the busiest shifts, upselling, customer service, and recommending food pairings. Increased overall sales by 10%, and reduced product loss by 15%.
The Tasting Room – Burbank, CA
Aug. 2014 – June 2018
Served discerning customers fine, regional wines along with a variety of tapas and other food pairings. Discussed various wines with customers. Recommended bottles of wine. Increased sales per customer by nearly $5.
Miller’s Gastro D’Lites – Sacramento, CA
July 2012 – March 2014
Worked as bar server, busser, and prep cook at a small gastropub serving mostly university students. Memorized an extensive cocktail menu. Assisted the chef with menu development.
Bartending Academy of America, May 2012
Don’t forget that apart from using keywords that match the job description and establishment, you should choose a resume style that goes with that too. Are you applying for a job at a trendy nightclub? Then a creative resume format is perfect? If you want a job at a country club, perhaps something a bit more buttoned down will suit your better. In any case, we have over a hundred of free downloadable resume templates for you to pick and choose!