Leverage Your WAITSTAFF Skills Into a REMOTE JOB

How to leverage your waitstaff skills into a remote job


by Chris Durst       Mar. 25, 2024

We’ve been helping people find real work from home jobs since 1999 and, over those 25 years, one of the questions that plays on a loop in our inbox and in our in-person workshops is, “How can I find a work from home job when all of my work experience is in a field that can only be done onsite and/or in person?

Unfortunately, when they explain their situation to us, they often say, “I’ve ONLY worked as a server in restaurants.”

Let me kick things off by saying, the word only makes me cringe when I hear people using it to describe themselves, their work, and their accomplishments. I mean, I’ve been a server and I know first hand how rigorous the job can be, and what a diverse skill set it takes to do it well. There’s no “only” about it!

If you’re “guilty” of using the words like JUST and ONLY when you talk about yourself, I created a short video about why you should stop using self-harming, job-blocking thinking AND WORDS so you can start fresh in your job search! Be sure to watch it.

Making the Jump from the Hospitality Industry to a Remote Job

While the hospitality industry may seem worlds apart from remote jobs in other industries, the truth is, your experience as waitstaff equips you with a wide range of valuable skills that are highly sought after in remote positions.

These are TRANSFERABLE SKILLS — skills you can take from one job to another — and the first thing you need to do is determine what yours are.

Below, we have a list of Transferable Skills, sample Accomplishments & Quantifying Statements, a sample Cover Letter, and a sample Resume to help you on your way to making the jump!


1. Identify Your Transferable Skills

Here are some key transferable skills gained from working as waitstaff that can be seamlessly applied to remote jobs in various industries:

Communication Skills: As a waiter/waitress, you’re constantly communicating with customers, colleagues, and management. Effective communication is also crucial in remote roles, whether it’s through email, video calls, or instant messaging.

Teamwork: Waitstaff often collaborate closely with kitchen staff and fellow servers to ensure smooth service. Remote workers also engage in team projects and virtual collaborations, requiring strong teamwork skills.

Customer Service: Providing exceptional customer service is a hallmark of the hospitality industry. This skill translates seamlessly into remote roles that involve client interactions or customer support.

Multitasking: Waitstaff excel at juggling multiple tasks simultaneously, from taking orders to serving drinks and managing guest requests. Remote jobs often require multitasking abilities, especially when handling various projects or deadlines.

Time Management: Working in a fast-paced restaurant environment hones your time management skills, essential for meeting deadlines and prioritizing tasks in remote settings.

Resilience: Dealing with demanding customers and handling high-pressure situations builds resilience, a valuable trait in remote roles where challenges may arise unexpectedly.

Attention to Detail: From remembering customer preferences to ensuring orders are accurate, attention to detail is paramount for waitstaff. Remote jobs often involve meticulous tasks where precision is key.

Problem Solving: Waitstaff must think on their feet to resolve issues such as customer complaints or last-minute changes to orders. Remote workers similarly encounter problems that require creative solutions.

Active Listening: Attentively listening to customer requests and feedback is essential for waitstaff. Active listening skills are equally important in remote roles, particularly during virtual meetings or client consultations.

Conflict Resolution: De-escalating conflicts between customers or resolving disputes with colleagues is a common occurrence in the restaurant industry. These conflict resolution skills are invaluable for handling interpersonal conflicts in remote teams and in remote customer service roles.

Sales and Upselling: Suggesting menu items or promoting specials demonstrates sales and upselling abilities, which can be applied to roles involving sales or marketing in remote settings.

Social Perceptiveness: Waitstaff develop a keen sense of social cues and understanding customer needs through observation. This social perceptiveness translates well into remote jobs that involve understanding client preferences or market trends.

Adaptability: The hospitality industry is dynamic, requiring adaptability to changing environments and guest preferences. Remote workers must also be adaptable, especially in roles that involve evolving technologies or shifting project scopes.

Collaboration: Working collaboratively with kitchen staff and fellow servers fosters a culture of teamwork. Remote jobs often involve collaborating with colleagues across different locations or time zones.

Crisis Management: Handling emergencies or unexpected situations in a restaurant setting prepares waitstaff for managing crises calmly and efficiently. This skill is invaluable in remote roles where unforeseen challenges may arise.

Patience: Dealing with demanding customers and managing busy shifts requires patience, a quality that is highly valued in remote work environments where projects may require time to develop or resolve.

Initiative: Taking proactive steps to enhance customer experiences or streamline restaurant operations demonstrates initiative, which is essential for remote workers who must often work independently and take ownership of their tasks.

Working Under Pressure: In fast-paced restaurant environments, waitstaff must perform efficiently under pressure to meet customer demands. Remote jobs may also involve tight deadlines or high-stakes projects, making the ability to work effectively under pressure a valuable asset.

As someone who has worked in the industry, you can probably come up with even more transferable skills to add to this list!

By highlighting these transferable skills on your resume and during interviews, you can more effectively showcase your suitability for remote positions across diverse industries. Embrace your experience as waitstaff and leverage it as a springboard for success in the remote work landscape.

2. Your Accomplishments & Quantifying Statements

If your resume reads like a job description, or a list of duties you performed, it’s time to change that!

In the competitive realm of remote job applications, your resume serves as your first impression and most powerful tool for capturing the attention of potential employers. However, in the digital landscape of remote work, where face-to-face interactions are limited, it’s your accomplishments and quantifiable statements that truly make your resume shine.

Highlighting your achievements and providing concrete metrics are crucial elements for remote job applicants, helping you stand out in a sea of candidates and demonstrating your value to prospective employers.

Hospitality workers often have a problem identifying, and putting into words, their accomplishments. Let’s see if we can help you with that!

Following are examples of the types of statements the might be apply to hospitality workers:

  • Achieved 25% increase in personal sales via effective promotion of specials and drink pairing recommendations
  • Named Employee of the Month for 5 months through votes cast by customers and co-workers
  • Maintained 95% or higher guest service rating for 3 years straight.
  • Learned details of 10 new products/specials nightly and provided customers with accurate details about each
  • Increased beverage sales 23% through recommendations of beers, wines, and cocktails to compliment their other menu selections
  • Effective de-escalation of problematic customers by using a calm demeanor, active listening, setting limits, and, when necessary, enforcement
  • Recognized for perfect attendance for 3 years
  • Exceeded sales targets by 11% by upselling appetizers and drinks
  • Ensured customers had a positive experience and were made to feel valued through prompt, friendly, and accurate service

3. A Cover Letter That Showcases Your Transferable Skills

The key to writing a resume and cover letter that will help you make the move into a different career field is to focus on the many skills and capabilities you have that are “transferable” to the specific job you are applying for.

In our example, we’ll suppose the job seeker, Sandy Smith, has a high school education and her work experience as a waitress/server and that she would like to apply for work from home customer service positions.

Below, we’ve written a SAMPLE COVER LETTER to serve as a thoughtstarter as you write your own! Above all, your approach should be confident and unapologetic – you have a great set of skills and you simply want to apply them to a new industry.

The cover letter is your chance to shine as an individual and really dazzle them with your personality and commitment to not only landing the job, but to turning in a stellar performance once you have.

You’ll notice in this sample that Mary tells the reader how her work as a server will benefit the company. There is not even a glimmer of doubt in her mind that she’s a perfect fit for the job!

Dear Sir/Madam,

I was excited to find your job post for a Customer Care Representative. I’ve carefully reviewed the job description and requirements, and I feel confident I’d be an ideal fit for this position.

I have more than 9 years of customer service experience and a successful track record of problem solving, communication, up-selling, and doing “whatever it takes” to ensure a exceptional customer experience. My years as a server in the fast-paced restaurant industry have taught me the significance of clear communications and friendly service with a very diverse customer base.

I am a self-directed worker who functions well both autonomously or as part of a team. I have a highly-focused and detail-oriented approach to my work that will serve me well in this remote position.

It is with great enthusiasm that I submit this cover letter and resume for your review and consideration. I’d welcome the opportunity to discuss the position and my qualifications to fill the role in person. Thank you for time and consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.


Sandy Smith

4. Your Remote Work Resume

In building a resume for this transition, we need to build are resume that is:

  • ATS-Friendly – Easy for Applicant Tracking Software (ATS) to read, digest, and rate so it can be passed to human decision-makers. For full details about what ATS, why it’s important to build a resume it can “understand,” and how to create one, watch Module 8 of our free online course.
  • Liberally sprinkled with important keywords that relate to the job you are applying for
  • Focused on your transferable skills and accomplishments

This example is not intended to represent a complete resume, but rather a brief layout of each section of a resume for your reference. For a downloadable sample resume, see the Links & Resources section of Module 8 of our free online course.

Sandy Smith
123 Main Street, Apt. 4 • (555) 666-7777 • [email protected]


Customer-centric customer service professional with a 9+ year history of exceeding established goals and customer expectations. Experienced in upselling, and general customer care. Recognized for excellence in attendance and punctuality, meeting and exceeding sales goals, teamwork, and enthusiastic participation in continuous learning opportunities.


skills and experience


Head Waiter, Company Name – City, CT       Mar. 2020 – Current
Create memorable experiences through excellent customer service, attention to detail, and a focus on relationship-building.

  • Recognized as the top performing waiter – closing the most sales in a 15-person team
  • Achieved 25% increase in personal sales via effective promotion of specials and drink pairing recommendations
  • Exceeded sales targets by 11% by upselling appetizers and drinks
  • Train and mentor new team members to ensure a seamless and positive customer experience

Server & Cashier, Company Name – City, ST     Aug. 2017 – Mar. 2020
Provided exceptional customer service to over 120 customers daily in a tourist-focused establishment

  • Learned details of 10 new products/specials nightly and provided customers with accurate details about each
  • Maintained 95% or higher guest service rating for 3 years straight
  • Increased beverage sales 23% through recommendations of beers, wines, and cocktails to compliment their other menu selections
  • Effective de-escalation of problematic customers by using a calm demeanor, active listening, setting limits, and, when necessary, enforcement


Hometown High School, City State – 2007

High School Diploma

That’s it! While the transition from the hospitality industry to remote work may seem daunting, it’s essential to recognize the wealth of transferable skills you possess and leverage them effectively in your job search. By highlighting your capabilities, quantifying your achievements, and articulating your value in your resume and cover letter, you’ll position yourself as a competitive candidate for remote roles across various industries. Embrace your experience as waitstaff, and embark on your journey towards a fulfilling remote career with confidence and determination.

Go forth and conquer!! 🙂

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