As a head chef, your CV doesn’t only need to show your culinary prowess – You also need to display a range of skills that set you apart as a clear leader and contribute to the restaurant’s bottom line.
Our comprehensive head chef CV guide will take you through the steps needed to create a CV that will help you secure the role of your choice.
We’ve included a sample head chef CV to help.
- Head chef CV example
- Structuring and formatting your CV
- Writing your CV profile
- Detailing work experience
- Your education
- Skills required for your Head chef CV
Head chef CV example
The above CV example demonstrates the type of info you should be including within your Head chef CV, as well as how to display this information in a way which looks professional and is easy for time-strapped recruiters to read.
This is the standard you should be aiming for, so remember to refer back to it throughout the CV writing process.
Head chef CV structure & format
Recruiters are busy, and if they can’t find the information they’re looking for in a flash, it could be game over for your application.
It should be clear, easily legible, well-organised and scannable – check out some simple tips and tricks below:
- Length: Recruiters will be immediately put off by lengthy CVs – with hundreds of applications to read through, they simply don’t have the time! Grabbing their attention with a short, snappy and highly relevant CV is far more likely to lead to success. Aim for two sides of A4 or less.
- Readability: Recruiters appreciate CVs that they can quickly scan through without trouble. Ensure yours makes the cut by formatting your headings for attention (bold or coloured fonts should do the trick) and breaking up long paragraphs into smaller chunks or short, snappy bullet points.
- Design: The saying ‘less is more’ couldn’t be more applicable to CVs. Readability is key, so avoid overly complicated designs and graphics. A subtle colour palette and easy-to-read font is all you need!
- Avoid photos: Ditch logos, images or profile photos. Not only do they take up valuable space, but they may even distract recruiters from your important written content.
Structuring your CV
As you write your CV, divide and sub-head into the following sections:
- Name and contact details – Always start with these, so employers know exactly how to get in touch with you.
- CV profile – Add a short summary of your relevant experience, skills and achievements, which highlights your suitability.
- Core skills section – A 2-3 columned list of your key skills.
- Work experience – A detailed list of any relevant work experience, whether paid or voluntary.
- Education – An overview of your academic background and any training you may have completed.
- Hobbies and interests – A brief overview of your hobbies and interests, if they’re relevant (optional).
Now I’ll guide you through exactly what you should include in each CV section.
CV Contact Details
Tuck your contact details into the corner of your CV, so that they don’t take up too much space.
Stick to the basic details, such as:
- Mobile number
- Email address – It should sound professional, such as your full name.
- Location -Just write your rough location, rather than your full address.
- LinkedIn profile or portfolio URL – If you include these, ensure they’re sleek, professional and up-to-date.
Head chef CV Profile
Your CV profile is the first thing recruiters will read – so your goal is to give them a reason to read onto the end of the document!
Create a short and snappy paragraph that showcases your key skills, relevant experience and impressive accomplishments.
Ultimately, it should prove to the reader that you’ve got what it takes to carry out the job.
Tips for creating an impactful CV profile:
- Keep it brief: It might be tempting to submit a page-long CV profile, but recruiters won’t have the time to read it. To ensure every word gets read, it’s best to include high-level information only; sticking to a length of 3-5 lines.
- Tailor it: Before writing your CV, make sure to do some research. Figure out exactly what your desired employers are looking for and make sure that you are making those requirements prominent in your CV profile, and throughout.
- Don’t add an objective: Avoid discussing your career goals in your CV profile – if you think they’re necessary, briefly mention them in your cover letter instead.
- Avoid cliches: If your CV is riddled with clichès like “Dynamic thought-leader”, hit that delete button. Phrases like these are like a broken record to recruiters, who read them countless times per day. Hard facts, skills, knowledge and results are sure to yield far better results.
What to include in your Head chef CV profile?
- Summary of experience: Demonstrate your suitability for your target jobs by giving a high level summary of your previous work experience, including the industries you have worked in, types of employer, and the type of roles you have previous experience of.
- Relevant skills: Highlight your skills which are most relevant to Head chef jobs, to ensure that recruiters see your most in-demand skills as soon as they open your CV.
- Essential qualifications: Be sure to outline your relevant Head chef qualifications, so that anyone reading the CV can instantly see you are qualified for the jobs you are applying to.
Quick tip: Your CV is your first impression on recruiters, so it’s vital to avoid spelling and grammar mistakes. Use a free writing assistant tool, like Grammarly, to check over your CV before hitting send.
Core skills section
Underneath your profile, create a core skills section to make your most relevant skills jump off the page at readers.
It should be made up of 2-3 columns of bullet points of your relevant skills.
Before you do this, look over the job description and make a list of any specific skills, specialisms or knowledge required.
Then, make sure to use your findings in your list. This will paint you as the perfect match for the role.
Work experience/Career history
By this point, employers will be keen to know more detail about you career history.
Starting with your most recent role and working backwards, create a snappy list of any relevant roles you’ve held.
This could be freelance, voluntary, part-time or temporary jobs too. Anything that’s relevant to your target role is well-worth listing!
Structuring your roles
The structure of your work experience section can seriously affect its impact.
This is generally the biggest section of a CV, and with no thought to structure, it can look bulky and important information can get lost.
Use my 3-step structure below to allow for easy navigation, so employers can find what they are looking for:
Start with a brief summary of your role as a whole, as well as the type of company you worked for.
“At this high end luxury hotel I work in partnership with the senior management team to ensure the successful running of the restaurant, in addition to managing the kitchen and the team, we host corporate and private events with a guest capacity of up to 600”
Use bullet points to detail the key responsibilities of your role, highlighting hard skills, software and knowledge wherever you can.
Keep them short and sharp to make them easily digestible by readers.
- Works closely with the wider management team to ensuring that the restaurant is a success, this includes cost control, stock management, GP and labour
- Responsible for setting a high standard for food quality & safety and maintains it within the kitchen
- Ensures the kitchen is always a safe environment for all the team
Lastly, add impact by highlight 1-3 key achievements that you made within the role.
Struggling to think of an achievement? If it had a positive impact on your company, it counts.
For example, you might increased company profits, improved processes, or something simpler, such as going above and beyond to solve a customer’s problem.
- Took this hotel restaurant from a 3* rating to a 5* rating whilst under my management
- Utilising supplier contacts acquired a new meat supplier, resulting in a 35% profit increase
Next up, you should list your education and qualifications.
This can include your formal qualifications (a degree, A-Levels and GCSEs), as well as sector-specific Head chef qualifications and/or training.
While school leavers and recent grads should include a lot of detail here to make up for the lack of work experience, experienced candidates may benefit from a shorter education section, as your work experience section will be more important to recruiters.
Interests and hobbies
The hobbies and interests CV section isn’t mandatory, so don’t worry if you’re out of room by this point.
However, if you have an interesting hobby, or an interest that could make you seem more suitable for the role, then certainly think about adding.
Be careful what you include though… Only consider hobbies that exhibit skills that are required for roles as a Head chef, or transferable workplace skills.
There is never any need to tell employers that you like to watch TV and eat out.
Essential skills for your Head chef CV
Tailoring your CV to the roles you are applying for is key to success, so make sure to read through the job descriptions and tailor your skills accordingly.
However, commonly desired Head chef skills include:
- Menu planning – Your head chef CV should provide evidence of your skills in menu planning, catering for the nature of the establishment, budgetary constraints and diversity.
- Chef skills – Particular culinary skills should be explained in your CV including any areas of specialism.
- Management and leadership – You’ll need to showcase your ability to effectively lead a team of chefs when under pressure with brilliant communication.
- Time management – It’s vital that when applying for a head chef role, you can convey that your time management skills are outstanding.
- Organisation – The head chef determines the order and safety of the kitchen through their organisational and planning skills.
Writing your Head chef CV
A strong, compelling CV is essential to get noticed and land interviews with the best employers.
To ensure your CV stands out from the competition, make sure to tailor it to your target role and pack it with sector-specific skills and results.
Remember to triple-check for spelling and grammar errors before hitting send.
Good luck with the job search!