Restaurant Management Programs

The food service industry is constantly growing and demands competent workers in a range of positions.

The goal of restaurant management trade schools is to teach students the essential skills required to run a restaurant that not only serves great food but creates profit.

Some of those skills learned are personnel management, cost balance, legal issues, and day-to-day maintenance.

Education & Training

Trade Schools with Restaurant Management Programs

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Educational Requirements

A postsecondary education is preferred for these positions. As such, many foodservice companies recruit from restaurant management schools.

Jobseekers with a combination of relevant work experience and an associate restaurant management degree have an edge when competing for hire.

What Do You Study?

Coursework also involves menu planning. Students discover the ins and outs of crafting a menu which satisfies diners’ tastes.

Candidates study how to balance the talents of their staff with the cuisine’s demands. This involves creating an appealing design easy for guests to understand as well.

Lessons covering good purchasing and storage practices help students gain an understanding of the various factors associated with cost and profit. They review how to offer satisfying portions while still boosting earnings.

Lastly, candidates learn about ordering products, storage space, and inventory control.

Other areas of the field covered include:

  • Serving alcohol
  • Sanitation
  • Pest and insect control
  • Contractor and construction bidding processes


One of the most important elements of restaurant management classes is proper food preparation. Here, students grasp how to follow recipes.

Teachers instruct them on how to measure, identify various utensils, and correctly use flavorings and seasonings. Understanding the basics of food preparation is essential to a well-run kitchen.


Most states require the Food Protection Manager Certification (FPMC). Although not essential, there are several optional restaurant management certificates that increase employment chances.

A few main ones to include on a restaurant management resume are:


The average salary for a restaurant manager is around $54k. This number fluctuates significantly, however.

Depending on geographic location as well as type of restaurant, a manager could potentially earn up to $90k or more a year.

State Hourly wage Annual wage
Alabama $29.62 $61,610.00
Alaska $37.79 $78,600.00
Arizona $31.47 $65,470.00
Arkansas $25.33 $52,690.00
California $32.20 $66,970.00
Colorado $37.76 $78,540.00
Connecticut $35.30 $73,430.00
Delaware $37.70 $78,410.00
District of Columbia $42.31 $88,000.00
Florida $35.34 $73,500.00
Georgia $30.49 $63,430.00
Guam $20.48 $42,590.00
Hawaii $35.47 $73,780.00
Idaho $28.23 $58,720.00
Illinois $30.98 $64,430.00
Indiana $29.86 $62,120.00
Iowa $31.56 $65,640.00
Kansas $31.77 $66,070.00
Kentucky $31.44 $65,400.00
Louisiana $29.20 $60,740.00
Maine $30.71 $63,870.00
Maryland $35.64 $74,120.00
Massachusetts $37.23 $77,440.00
Michigan $30.85 $64,170.00
Minnesota $32.07 $66,700.00
Mississippi $25.24 $52,500.00
Missouri $30.24 $62,900.00
Montana $26.91 $55,980.00
Nebraska $30.14 $62,700.00
Nevada $28.18 $58,610.00
New Hampshire $35.98 $74,840.00
New Jersey $38.94 $80,980.00
New Mexico $29.09 $60,510.00
New York $39.50 $82,150.00
North Carolina $31.77 $66,080.00
North Dakota $30.17 $62,760.00
Ohio $30.44 $63,320.00
Oklahoma $32.67 $67,960.00
Oregon $28.03 $58,310.00
Pennsylvania $31.41 $65,340.00
Puerto Rico $17.32 $36,020.00
Rhode Island $42.68 $88,770.00
South Carolina $29.23 $60,800.00
South Dakota $28.23 $58,730.00
Tennessee $25.03 $52,060.00
Texas $32.30 $67,180.00
Utah $27.11 $56,380.00
Vermont $33.56 $69,800.00
Virgin Islands $24.27 $50,480.00
Virginia $31.19 $64,870.00
Washington $42.07 $87,500.00
West Virginia $25.02 $52,030.00
Wisconsin $28.45 $59,170.00
Wyoming $33.75 $70,190.00

Occupation: Food Service Managers (SOC Code119051)

Career Outlook

Job Duties

In order to run a successful business, restaurant managers need good employees. Managers hire workers to fill open positions and ensure they meet the restaurant’s service standards. They then assign tasks, monitor performance, and, when necessary, hire and fire personnel.

Finance Management

Handling finances is another component to a restaurant management career. Professionals in this role balance the cost of food and beverages, as well as equipment expenditures.

Restaurant managers should not only make sure expenses are covered but also work towards earning profits.


Managing the budget and payroll records is another crucial task. They handle payroll service use, sign checks, and if direct deposit is not available, hand checks out to their employees.

Monitoring the budget for efficiency and keeping spending within financial limitations are necessary jobs of a restaurant manager.

Quality Control

Food is the main attraction at a restaurant. So, one of the most important restaurant management duties is to oversee food preparation, portion sizes, and presentation.

Each dish leaving the kitchen is a reflection of the entire company, so everything created for guests should be of the highest quality.

Customer Satisfaction

Restaurant managers often address customer complaints. These complaints may involve the service provided, food delivered, or a drink ordered from the bar.

They may reimburse guests or have meals and cocktails remade to the intended standard.

The restaurant manager’s job is to ensure patrons receive outstanding service and products consistently.

Some other relevant duties are:

  • Creating schedules
  • Confer with cooks, servers, and bartenders to plan menus
  • Oversee maintenance and cleaning of equipment
  • Teach staff health and safety regulations
  • Calculate end of day cash deposits and credit card charge slips

Promotion & Marketing

Restaurant managers need to examine the reach and marketing side of their business. There are many ways to do this.

One is to begin crafting an online presence for the restaurant either through a website or social media account. This can either be done by themselves or by hiring a new employee to control the account.

Another avenue is to attend summits and conferences and meet fellow innovative, forward-thinkers in the restaurant industry. Events have workshops on food styling, alcohol brewing methods, and Q&A sessions.

Lectures on the latest technologies and management theories can lead to improvement in a restaurant managers skill-set.

Required Skillset

Customer Service

A firm grasp of customer service is a foundational skill for restaurant managers to possess. The best excel in assisting guests while building meaningful relationships, and therefore repeat business.

In order to do this, they must assess needs, meet quality expectations, and evaluate the patron’s satisfaction.

Problem Solving

Anything can and often does happen in a restaurant. The capacity to solve problems and correct issues quickly is a desirable trait in a candidate.

From employees missing shifts to equipment failure, new problems consistently arise. A good manager is responsive and flexible, ensuring operations run smoothly despite unexpected events.


Knowledge of administrative principles is critical. The ability to implement a marketing campaign, create an HR model, as well as coordinate people and resources are just a few administrative tasks.

A successful manager can put plans and policies in place that facilitate a healthy work environment for employees.


Effective communication is another important restaurant management skill. They must be clear, open, and consistent with staff when giving direction, but also listen to feedback as an employee or customer provides it.

Managers should observe where staff can improve, but acknowledge the team’s strengths, too.

Leadership Ability

The ability to lead is a skill that covers all areas of the career. An important restaurant management requirement is a willingness to lead others. Managers often have to take charge of situations to guarantee it is properly handled, offering opinions and solutions confidently.

Other Useful Skills

  • Coordinate a team while utilizing good communication skills
  • Task-oriented and having an attention for details
  • Displaying a positive attitude and having patience in stressful situations
  • Organizing waiting and kitchen staff

Work Environment

Restaurant management work requires the ability to operate everywhere within their business. From dining room to kitchen, they are responsible for maintaining cleanliness and organization.

The majority of workdays are spent either out in the dining room, bar, hostess stand, or patio areas, ensuring the restaurant is neat and orderly.


Many food service managers work long shifts, and the job is hectic. Most are full-time, but it isn’t out of the ordinary for them to put in a significant amount of overtime.

In case of emergencies, short-notice shifts on evenings, weekends, and holidays are also common.

Job Stress

A restaurant managers job is physically demanding and, at times, stressful. They must be able to stand on their feet for several hours at a time and handle the fast pace of the food industry.

Additionally, managers experience a lot of intellectual pressure from balancing finances, overseeing staff members, and pleasing customers.

Tools of the Trade

A large part of their duties involves making sure all machinery is functioning properly. Oftentimes this requires managers to call in repair workers to fix the issues.

Some restaurant management equipment includes:

  • Computers
  • Cash registers and credit card machines
  • Laser printers
  • Tablets with point-of-sale systems
  • Cooking utensils
  • Stoves, ovens, and fryers

Places They Can Work

There are a wide array of companies to find employment in after graduating from a restaurant management trade school.

As graduates earn a wealth of knowledge concerning a variety of aspects in the food trade, qualified candidates have many options to consider.

Common places which hire these job-seekers are:

  • Restaurants
  • Cruise Lines
  • Hotel Chains
  • Catering Services

Other Career Options

Restaurant Ownership

In such a dynamic industry, there are plenty of enticing opportunities for those with a restaurant management education. For many, the ultimate career in food service includes eventually owning a restaurant.

Nearly all of the knowledge needed for this profession carries over into ownership.


One other position those with restaurant management training can consider is as a public relations specialist. Workers build relationships with clients, in this case restaurants, who want to get the word out about their establishment.

A food public relations specialist then sets up campaigns to make potential customers aware of the business through newspapers, social media, magazines, and internet ads.

Recipe Developer

Another possible career that restaurant management school graduates might find exciting is as a recipe tester and developer. These workers think up new recipes based on those from famous chefs for publishing.

They are paid to research, cook, as well as test out newly-published recipes.

Lodging Manager

A career that requires similar skills is a lodging manager. These professionals perform day-to-day financial, personnel, and customer service operations at hotels and resorts.

They make sure guests on vacations or business trips have a positive experience from check-in to check-out. Lodging managers also handle finances, improving efficiency and profit for their respective companies.

Some additional paths include:

  • Food marketing firms
  • Culinary trendologist
  • Food distribution companies
  • Wedding and social event planning firms
  • Food stylist

Career Outlook

The restaurant industry is one of the largest employers in the United States, providing millions with jobs. As populations grow, so too does the demand for diverse dining options. Larger numbers of people will continue to dine out, purchase carry-out, or have food delivered. All of these businesses need qualified restaurant managers to run them.