Trying to apply for waiter jobs but you keep being asked for a cover letter? Don't panic, we've created a walkthrough so you can write the perfect waiter cover letter that'll increase your chances of getting an interview.
It might feel like extra effort writing a cover letter for a waiter job but this is the perfect opportunity to show off your key skills. An excellent cover letter can impress and significantly increase your chances of getting an interview.
Try to give yourself plenty of time to write your cover letter so it's not rushed!
A cover letter is usually one page of A4 (unless the job application requires less/more).
How to start your cover letter
If you know who your job application is addressed to, you should start with their name, e.g.
Dear Mr/Mrs Smith,
However, if you don't know the name, start with:
Paragraph 1: Introduction
The opening section of your letter is where you explain why you're writing. This is just formal practice and helps you get started into your cover letter, e.g.
"I'm writing to apply for the waiter position you are currently advertising. From my previous work experience, I believe I am a suitable candidate..."
Paragraph 2: Skills
In paragraph 2, talk about your skills. Along with knowing how to carry serving plates, restaurant managers want to know about other important skills.
What skills do you have that shows you'll be a great waiter? Here are some examples:
- Customer service: have you dealt with unhappy customers?
- Bartender skills
- Ability to work independently or as a team
- Cleaning and preparing tables
- Silver service
- Sommelier (trained as a wine professional)
When you write about your skills, you should provide some evidence that supports it. If you have customer service skills, describe how you've successfully used them.
Your interviewer will be able to see if you're being honest about what skills you have when they ask you about them - so be honest!
Paragraph 3: Experience
After you've described your skills and explained why they make you suitable for the job, this paragraph is your opportunity to talk about your experiences. What experiences do you have that makes you an excellent candidate?
Many restaurants want their waiters to have some serving experience before they start.
Look at your CV, and pick out any previous job roles that are relevant to the position you're applying for now. Talk about them.
Here is an example:
"I worked in a cafe part-time for two years. I greeted customers when they first entered, explained the weekly specials and served customers professionally. At the cafe we had many regular customers, they appreciated how I always remembered their preferences. I enjoy going the extra mile..."
As you're writing a cover letter, make sure you use a formal tone and avoid slang.
What to write about if you've never worked as a waiter before?
It can be difficult to write a cover letter if you've never worked as a waiter before. But don't panic. If you've had other job roles before, talk about any skills or experiences that are relevant to being a waiter. You've probably got many transferable skills you can mention.
The best waiters can work independently and as part of a team. They're friendly, good mannered and can work professionally. Give previous work examples that relate to these good qualities.
Paragraph 4: How to finish
When you bring your cover letter to a close, reiterate in the final paragraph why you're the ideal candidate for the job. Then sign it off.
If you began the letter with 'Dear Sir/Madam', use 'Yours faithfully,' if you addressed the letter to the employer 'Mr/Mrs Smith,' then end with 'Yours sincerely.'
Before you submit... Proof-read!
Before you go anywhere near attaching your cover letter to an email, you must check it for spelling and grammatical errors. If you have spelling errors in your letter, there's a high chance your application will be thrown out. Jobs are so competitive, don't give a manager an excuse to throw away your application.
- Do a spell check on your computer
- Read through your cover letter a few times. Leave it for an hour or so and then read it again. Fresh eyes can help you find mistakes.
- Ask someone else to read it through.
Once all the checks are passed, send off your cover letter with the knowledge you've done the best you can.
Now, you need to prepare yourself for the interviews.
How to be a great waiter
Waiters are expected to work fast and safely, as well as be on their feet for long shifts. The best way to show your manager that you're serious about your job as a waiter is to be prepared. Wear the correct uniform to work and buy slip resistant shoes.
Are you getting ready for an interview?
Going for a job interview as a waiter is already stressful but we're here to make it easier. We've created a guide that has 20 interview questions (and answers) to help you prepare and increase your chances of getting the job. Download your free guide.