5 Super Tasty Careers in the Food Industry

By Henry R. Steele - March 30, 2018
Reading Time: 6 minutes

When the economy slows, some jobs can be lost as consumers do not buy as many homes, cars, appliances etc. But everyone has to still eat sooner or later. That is why food service management positions tend to be available whether the economy is good or bad.

In recent years, as the economy has gotten stronger, there are more types of food management jobs available as new businesses open and current businesses expand operations. If you are graduating with a degree in business or food management, here are five of the best management jobs you can land in the food and hospitality industry.

Food Service Manager

Food service manager is the most common and growing position you can attain when you have a degree in business with a focus in food management. You will be responsible for the daily management and operation of restaurants, bars and others that serve food. Your job is largely about directing and managing staff to ensure that customers like their dining experience. They also are responsible for ensuring the business stays profitable. Other tasks include:

  • Hire, oversee, train and fire employees as needed
  • Order proper amounts of food and beverages, supplies and equipment
  • Oversee the preparation of food, portions, and how food is presented
  • Inspect equipment, supplies and areas where food is prepared
  • Ensure workers are complying with food and health safety standards
  • Manage the budget and payroll for the eating establishment

Food service managers are in charge of all business areas, especially managing the customer experience and employees. For instance, most food service managers for a restaurant are responsible for interviewing, hiring, training, overseeing etc of employees who have direct contact with workers. Most of these managers also review and complete paperwork that is related to taxes, wages and licensing.

Employment for all food service managers is set to grow by 9% by 2026, which is about as fast as all jobs, according to BLS. As the economy continues to grow and expand, more Americans will be spending money again by eating out. Also, there will be more consumer demand for cafeterias and catering services as business activity grows. People in want to work in restaurant management in charge of a restaurant or even a district of restaurants should have at least a bachelor’s degree in food service management and several years of related experience.

The median salary in the field is $50,800, with the top 10% earning $87,000 per year.

Check out these job titles:

  • Chef and head cook
  • Lodging manager
  • Sales manager
  • Bartender

Lodging Manager

Lodging managers are responsible for ensuring that guests of hotels, motels and related businesses have a good experience during their stay. Lodging managers serve both consumer and business guests. They also are responsible for ensuring the facility is run in an efficient and profitable manner. Duties also include:

  • Manage the oversight of guest rooms, public areas and the grounds to ensure they are clean and tidy
  • Ensure that lodging company standards are met for guest services, food, housekeeping and decor
  • Answer questions from the guests about services and policies
  • Keep track of the money that the facility is making each month, year and quarter
  • Monitor the performance of lodging staff to make sure guests are pleased with their stay
  • Set the rates and budget for the hotel, approve all expenditures and allocate funds to assorted departments

Professionals with a food service management background often work as lodging managers because they use many of the same skills here. A comfortable room, good food and accommodating staff are very important for guests who are staying at a lodging for either vacation or business travel. You can work at lodgings of various sizes, from small bed and breakfasts to motels to major hotels with hundreds of rooms.

The job outlook for lodging managers is average through 2026, with 4% growth anticipated by BLS. In certain areas of the US, however, it is possible that higher growth in travel, tourism and generally higher occupancy can contribute to more need for lodging managers.

Professionals with a bachelor’s degree in food service management, hospitality or hotel management generally have the best job opportunities.

The median salary for lodging managers in 2016 was $51,800, with the top 10% earning $96,000 per year.

Check out these job titles:

  • General manager
  • Revenue manager
  • Front office manager
  • Convention service manager

Meeting, Convention and Event Planner

A meeting, convention and event planner is responsible for the management of all aspects of professional meetings and events. They are responsible for arranging meeting locations, transportation, and other details that are essential for successful gatherings. Common duties include:

  • Meet with prospective and current clients to understand what the purpose of the meeting is
  • Plan what the scope of the event will be, such as its cost, location and time
  • Solicit bids from various hotels, convention centers and vendors
  • Inspect the various venues to ensure they will meet the standards of the client
  • Coordinate the services for the event such as transportation, food and rooms
  • Monitor activities during the event to ensure the attendees and client is satisfied

Meeting, convention and event planners typically organize all kinds of events from conferences to conventions, to parties and weddings. They are responsible for coordinating all details including the finances and providing of all services. Before the event, they are responsible for estimating what the attendance will be and also determine the purpose of the event. During the actual event, the manager will handle logistics, from getting guests registered to organizing any equipment and services needed.

A major part of the job is to find a good meeting or event site, such as a convention center or hotel. A good manager must consider if the facility and the services provided will meet the needs of the client.

As the economy continues to improve, these managers will see strong demand in the range of 11% through 2026. This is faster than average. There are more businesses and other organizations planning events and conventions now that the economy is doing better, so there will be more jobs available.

Job candidates with a bachelor’s in food services, hospitality and meeting and event management should be in high demand.

Median pay in this field is $47,350 per year with the top 10% earning $83,000 per year.

Check out these job titles:

  • Meeting planner
  • Convention planner
  • Event planner

Food Public Relations Specialist

If your interest in food management is more focused on public relations and marketing, you could be interested in a career in food public relations management.

These public relations professionals are often employed in the food and hospitality industry, and are responsible for creating and maintaining a positive public image for the food related organization they represent. Common duties include:

  • Write news releases and prepare information about the restaurant or establishment for the media
  • Help clients within the organization to respond effectively to the public
  • Maintain the corporate image of the food related organization
  • Evaluate the public opinion of the food related company in the media

These professionals may also be referred to as communications specialists and media specialists. They handle the hospitality company’s communications with the public. Companies that deal with food, entertainment and hospitality must work hard to maintain a good reputation with the public.

Jobs in the public relations field generally will increase by 9% by 2026, which is faster than average. The median pay is $58,000 per year, with the top 10% earning more than $110,000 per year.,

Check out these job titles:

  • Market research analyst
  • Meeting, convention and event planner
  • Wholesale and manufacturing sales representative

Agricultural and Food Scientist

As you consider other options in the food management field, careers in food processing, management and food science also can be of interest. There are many changes taking place in the food manufacturing field as consumers are eating healthier diets and more are looking for foods that do not contain GMOs. Also, food labeling laws are currently going through Congress that could lead to big changes in how food ingredients are presented to the public.

These managers will also spend time working on issues surrounding food quality. More consumers are seeking products that do not have as much sugar, preservatives and processed ingredients. These desires are putting pressures on the food manufacturing industry and can lead to more jobs available in food science management and related jobs.

Major job duties include:

  • Conducting research and experiments to improve the sustainability and productivity of farm animals and crps
  • Create new types of food products and come up with better ways to process, package and deliver food
  • Communicate research findings to major stakeholders

The job outlook in this field is bright, with a 7% increase in demand through 2026. Employment is expected to rise as there is more research into agricultural production and management. There are challenges such as population growth, demand for water, pests and pathogens, and changes in climate that must be addressed.

The median salary in the field is $62,900 per year with the top 10% earning $116,000.

Check out these job titles:

  • Food scientist or technologist
  • Food batchmaker
  • Food science technician
  • Restaurant publicist
  • Research chef

References

Henry R. Steele
Henry R. Steele
Managing Editor
Henry is Managing Editor of BusinessStudent.com. He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.Follow on Twitter.com

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