1. Resume Examples
  2. Hostess
Written by Susan ShorSusan Shor

Hostess resume example & writing guide

As a hostess, you set the stage for restaurant guests to relax and enjoy everything about their dining experience, over and above the delicious food. Your ability to influence customers by making a favorable first impression should be the focus of your hostess resume. This writing guide takes you through the steps of impressing any restaurant hiring manager, with adaptable wording from a hostess resume example.
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Hostess resume example & writing guide
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You have a sparkling personality, grace under pressure, and the ability to make every customer feel special. How do you make that apparent in your hostess resume? Read on to find out.

Resume.io can help you create a resume that makes a stellar first impression on hiring managers by placing your talents up front and center. All of the 350+ occupation-specific resume examples in our collection, each with a corresponding writing guide, have the same objective.

What you are reading now is a guide to help you write a hostess resume that shows off your charm and professional personality. Our step-by-step advice is backed by a hostess resume example you can adapt. Here’s what we’ll cover:

  • What hostesses do and the hiring situation
  • The correct structure for a resume and the best format to use
  • Having a persuasive impact in each resume section: header, profile, employment history, education, and skills
  • Demonstrating visually that you understand presentation makes a difference.

Before you dive into creating your professional resume, get a taste of what’s cooking in other related hospitality & catering cv examples:

What does a hostess do?

Hostesses are people who greet people in restaurants or other places of service. They welcome patrons and strive to provide a positive experience for customers and clients. Hostesses typically take phone calls, handle schedules or seating arrangements, and provide customers and clients with general information. 

Several trends emerged from the industry’s attempts to create new recipes for success in a post-pandemic world.

As limitations on restaurant capacity continue, restaurateurs sought new ingredients to spice up their customers’ dining experiences. That included increased eating at home options. While there was bad news —CNN Business reported that 17% of U.S. restaurants permanently closed — not all indicators were negative; chefs and restaurateurs are, after all, innovators. 

All that at-home cooking left some people craving the indoor dining experience. That meant that once they were able to, a large number of diners were back in restaurants. 

One trend that is here to stay is outdoor dining, so you may find that instead of standing inside the restaurant door waiting for diners to enter, you’re greeting them at the curb, where, perhaps you are also delivering orders taken on a mobile app.

No matter how tough the business gets, the pandemic proved that  restaurants are not going to go away, so keep your eyes on your future

Now let’s get started with writing your job-winning hostess resume.

How to write a hostess resume

All resumes, regardless of occupation, should consist of a one-page document that lays out the work experience, education/training and skills that make you good at what you do. So the information in your hostess resume should follow the same structure, with the following components in this order:

  • Resume header
  • Summary
  • Employment history
  • Education
  • Skills

Applicant Tracking Systems and Your Resume: What You Need to Know

You may be the best candidate for the job, hands down, but hiring managers will never find out if you don’t get past the Applicant Tracking System (ATS). ATS software is a valuable tool for recruiters and hiring managers. They scan resumes, inputting information from your resume into company databases. They also rank resumes based on a complex set of algorithms that include keywords and phrases linked to each job.

There’s no one way to ensure that you will rank high enough to beat ATS software – there are more than 100 different products out there – but there are a few tips you can follow to give you a much higher chance.

Most importantly, your resume is not a single, unchanging document. It is a job application; therefore, it needs to fit each job for which you apply. That means you should personalize your resume every time you send it out. Look at the job listing and match the words and phrases you use to the ones in the listing. Swap out any similar ones for an exact match to the listing. Don’t try to “stuff” in keywords or force them in. They should fit seamlessly or not at all. Recruiters can tell the difference.

Choosing the best resume format for a hostess

The chronological resume format is probably your best bet, as it is for about 90% of all job seekers. It’s a logical way to organize highlights of your current and previous work experience in each employee position you’ve held. This makes it easy for hiring managers to see what you’ve learned and applied in each position. This information is organized under dated employer headings,  in order from most recent to earliest dates. 

Only if you are new to the workforce or your background covers diverse occupations, a different resume format may be worth considering. The  functional resume format emphasizes transferable skills rather than employers, while the hybrid (combination) resume format features both chronological and functional elements. 

Resume header

Your resume header is designed to make a positive first impression on the reader, in the same way you do when greeting restaurant customers. It’s an attractively designed section at the top of the page, or sometimes down one side, containing your name, occupation, address, phone number and email. Make sure you have a professional email address with a format such as [email protected]. Do not use the funny email you acquired in middle school.

Besides being the resume element that hiring managers will notice first, the header makes it easy for them to readily get in touch with you for an interview. It also sets the stage visually for everything else on the page to look reader-friendly — so again there’s a parallel with the friendly and welcoming disposition that restaurant managers would want a hostess to have.

Expert tip

Using the same header design for both your hostess cover letter and resume give your job application a professional, put-together look.

Hostess resume profile example: introduce yourself with style

Your resume profile — sometimes called the summary or personal statement — shows you off at your best and most creative. It takes the best of your professional abilities and seasons it with a taste of your personality.

A host or hostess is the face of the restaurant. Your guest interactions will leave an impression on customers. In addition to in-person greetings, you may be charged with answering phone calls or text messages to take dining reservations or answer questions about the restaurant. It is here in the resume profile, and only here, that you have the opportunity to get a little creative.

You have about four lines in which to convince hiring managers that you are the person to create an optimal guest experience for every patron. How do you accomplish that?

First, create a list of the top qualities that make you a great host or hostess. This list will also help you with your skills section.

Next, consider the one or two achievements of which you are proudest. Are you excellent at selling daily specials? Did you help plan special events or recommend menus for repeat customers? Were you able to reduce wait times or manage difficult situations? Highlight those here.

Expert tip

Use this outline to structure your profile: 1-2 sentences describing your biggest achievement (with supporting details or data). 1-2 sentences on what skills and attributes you will bring to the restaurant. A sentence on your work style or philosophy.

Be proud. This isn’t the place to be shy about your capabilities. 

Use strong adjectives to describe yourself. Don’t fall back on words like “nice” or “good.” You are “friendly” and “capable.” Since restaurant employees often work closely together, make sure you describe your teamwork style. It’s important that you fit in with the waitstaff and other coworkers.

The bottom line is that this section should answer the employer's question: Why should I hire you?

Remember: You can use a cover letter to explain what you didn’t mention in your resume, but you should not rely on it to convey fundamental career information.

Use this hostess resume profile example to guide you:

Adaptable summary resume sample

Energetic and dedicated Hostess with diverse skills reflecting 12+ years of experience. Passionate about food, people, and entertainment, and ways to bring them together in an eating establishment like yours. Socially outgoing, friendly and attentive, with the ability to problem-solve. Adept at using a variety of office equipment and scheduling systems.


Employment history sample: your skills will lead you higher

Perhaps you are looking to move up from a casual dining restaurant to something more upscale. Maybe you are ready to begin a career, or move from one service industry position to another. No matter the case, the message you want to send in your work experience section is this: I can do the job. I can learn and grow and handle responsibility.

The key to this is to think of your employment history as a story. Describe each job (in reverse chronological order, as noted previously) in terms of what you accomplished and what attributes you used to get there. In your first job, you completed basic tasks, and as you moved up, you learned and gained new skills. Try to show that as you compile your employment history section.

Instead of listing responsibilities, talk about achievements. Use strong action verbs and data whenever possible. Each bullet point should include new information — since a resume should only be one page, you need to make the most of each line. 

Consider times you went above and beyond your job description to enhance the dining experience for restaurant patrons. Did you make a suggestion that improved flow in the dining area? How about pitching in by offering to sanitize between customers, printing up paper menus or creating a QR code system for viewing menus electronically?

Expert tip

Focus on customer-related accomplishments and attributes first. Back-of-the-house skills are secondary.

Remember to reread the hostess job description and tailor this section for each job. Not all hosting jobs are alike, so you want hiring managers to know that you really want to work at their restaurant.

If you have customer service or other related experience, include that as well. Employers want to know that you can work well with others and handle the occasional difficult situation. Make sure you keep the focus on responsibilities that will translate to hosting.

Take a look at the hostess employment history sample below:

Adaptable employment history resume example

Hostess at Finnegans, Austin
July 2015 - March 2023

  • Managed all front desk operations for a 200+ seating restaurant.
  • Maintained strong relationships with all  staff to ensure smooth operations..
  • Followed all safety and sanitation protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic, and ensured customers were compliant
  • Helped create and implement a QR code method for customers to read the menu electronically, decreasing printing costs by 40%.


Server at La Cucina Isabel, Austin
September 2013 - June 2015

  • Cheerfully answered phone calls while efficiently handling reservations, decreasing “on hold” times by 20%.
  • Put sometimes-impatient customers at ease while they waited to be seated during peak times of day, being especially gracious and tactful towards those without reservations.


Server at The Grand Patio, Seattle
October 2010 - August 2013

  • Made extra efforts to satisfy customers’ preference for indoor or outdoor table location, even during peak hours and changing weather conditions.
  • Showed consideration for customers’ comfort in the best table location during renovations to expand the restaurant’s capacity.

Hostess resume education example: keep your listing neat

Although you don’t need advanced degrees to become a great hostess, you may have more to sayin your resume's education section than you think. A high school diploma is preferred by many employers, but there’s no need to list your GPA unless it is stellar and you are looking for your first job. Your employment history is much more important.

List all degrees and certifications here, in reverse chronological order from highest to lowest level. Add any hospitality or chef’s classes you completed in high school, college, or on your own. This shows that your interest in this field extended into your schooling and that you have basic knowledge of food safety and customer service.

See our example below of a hostess resume education example:  

Adaptable education resume example

Associate of Communications, Seattle University, Seattle
August 2008 - May 2010

High School Diploma, St. Catherine's Academy, Ballard
September 2004 - May 2008


CV skills example: the key ingredients

Every great CV includes a great skills section, but what is a great skills section? One that distills your most sought-after and high-level attributes and achievements into a few words and phrases that recruiters can easily scan. Recruiters received tens or hundreds of resumes for each position, so they can’t possibly read each one. This section gives them an easy way to sort through the pile.

What are the most important skills for a host or hostess?

Customer service and interpersonal skills, obviously! Right? But what does that mean? You need to be compassionate, understanding, solve problems quickly, and defuse potentially tense encounters with diners.

Expert tip

Did you think about these necessary skills?

  • Basic math
  • High-energy level
  • Hard-working
  • Efficient

You know you need to showcase your people skills, but what else does your job require? You should be able to work well as part of a team and individually. But you may also need to handle scheduling, seating arrangements, and other administrative tasks. If you have experience with a specific POS system, list it by name. Always be as specific as possible.

This section should include about five skills – 10 at the most. That means you have to be very picky when you curate this list. First, create a “master list” of all the skills and attributes you have. Next, go back to the job listing once again and choose the attributes that you have that are also in the listing. Try to use your highest-level skills unless something is listed as a “must-have” by your potential employer. Balance your section with both soft skills also known as people skills, and hard skills, or the particular knowledge you need to be a great host or hostess.

Below are some ideas for you to consider for your hostess resume skills section:

Adaptable skills section resume example
  • Excellent Communication Skills
  • Positive Attitude
  • Social Skills
  • Knowledge of a Variety of Cuisines
  • Information Recall Skills
  • Scheduling

Hostess resume layout, design and formatting

As the face of the restaurant, you know how important first impressions are. You need to look the part when you go to work since you are representing the entire establishment. The same goes for your professional resume. It is the first indication hiring managers will have about who you are. 

Your resume layout needs to be neat, clean, professional and legible. There are several rules of thumb to follow to make sure you get there. 

  1. Maintain standard margins and vary line lengths to avoid large, uninviting blocks of type.
  2. Make sure your contact information stands out in the header.
  3. Keep color to a minimum. A small flourish is fine.
  4. Use only one or two easy-to-read fonts.
  5. They may seem dull, but standard section headings are the way to go. Recruiters won’t spend a lot of time trying to guess what your cute or catchy titles really mean.

Within those parameters, you can still show your individuality. For some great examples, check out Resume.io's expert-vetted layout templates in four categories: Professional, Creative, Simple and Modern. Use our online resume builder tool to help you make the content your own.

Key takeaways

  • Position yourself for any new hostess job with a ready-to-go resume.
  • Customize every section, every time you send in an application for a new position.
  • Get creative (and a little boastful) in your profile
  • HIghlight your accomplishments in your resume profile and employment history section.
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