Chefs - What They Do
Chefs plan and direct food preparation and cooking activities and prepare and cook meals and specialty foods. They are employed in restaurants, hotels, hospitals and other health care institutions, central food commissaries, clubs and similar establishments, and on ships.
This group performs some or all of the following duties:
- Plan and direct food preparation and cooking activities of several restaurants in an establishment, restaurant chains, hospitals or other establishments with food services
- Consult with clients regarding weddings, banquets and specialty functions
- Plan menus and ensure food meets quality standards
- Estimate food requirements and may estimate food and labour costs
- Supervise activities of sous-chefs, specialist chefs, chefs and cooks
- Arrange for equipment purchases and repairs
- Recruit and hire staff
- May prepare and cook food on a regular basis, or for special guests or functions.
- Supervise activities of specialist chefs, chefs, cooks and other kitchen workers
- Demonstrate new cooking techniques and new equipment to cooking staff
- May plan menus and requisition food and kitchen supplies
- May prepare and cook meals or specialty foods.
Chefs and specialist chefs
- Prepare and cook complete meals or specialty foods, such as pastries, sauces, soups, salads, vegetables and meat, poultry and fish dishes, and create decorative food displays for special events such as banquets
- Instruct cooks in preparation, cooking, garnishing and presentation of food
- Create new recipes
- Supervise cooks and other kitchen staff
- May plan menus
- May requisition food and kitchen supplies.
- corporate chef
- executive chef
- head chef
- executive sous-chef
- master chef
- pastry chef
- specialist chef
This is what you typically need for the job:
- Completion of secondary school is usually required.
- Cook's trade certification, which is available in all provinces and territories, or equivalent credentials, training and experience, are required.
- Executive chefs usually require management training and several years of experience in commercial food preparation, including two years in a supervisory capacity and Experience as a sous-chef, specialist chef or chef.
- Sous-chefs, specialist chefs and chefs usually require several years of experience in commercial food preparation.
- Red Seal endorsement for cooks is also available to qualified chefs upon successful completion of the interprovincial Red Seal examination.
- Chef de cuisine certification, administered by the Canadian Culinary Institute of the Canadian Federation of Chefs and Cooks (CFCC), is available to qualified chefs.
- Read labels on hazardous materials and pesticides for usage and safety information. (1)
- Read letters and memos in order to respond to them. (2)
- Read newspapers to keep up to date and to conduct market research. (2)
- Read industry newsletters, trade magazines and reference books on management practices for professional development. (2)
- Read insurance policies to determine the extent of their coverage. (3)
- Read legislation, regulations and by-laws, in order to keep up to date and to apply this information to their operation. (4)
- Read legal documents, such as contracts and permits. (4)
- Read labels on materials and supplies as required. (1)
- Check invoices for accuracy. (2)
- Scan various forms in their day-to-day operations, such as application, inspection, registration or reservation, and waiver forms. (3)
- Use information from various forms to complete financial records. These include payroll forms such as, time cards and deduction forms, deposit book forms and cheque book forms. (3)
- Interpret assembly diagrams, such as those used to assemble new equipment. (3)
- Use Revenue Canada tables to fill out taxation forms, as required. (3)
- Prepare bills and statements. (3)
- Write short notes for themselves and for others. They keep a record of events by making entries in diaries. (1)
- Complete forms such as incident reports and lost and found forms. (2)
- Write letters to answer inquiries, respond to complaints or confirm reservations. (3)
- Write brochures, newsletters and advertisements. (4)
- Write waivers, agreements and licences. (4)
- Write statements of policies and procedures. (4)
- Write business and marketing plans, to promote the success of their business and to obtain financing. (5)
- Write proposals and position papers to persuade others or defend their interests. (5)
- Total bank deposits. (1)
- Calculate exchange on foreign currency. (2)
- Prepare invoices and pay bills. (2)
Scheduling, Budgeting & Accounting Math
- Prepare the work schedule for their staff. (1)
- Create rate structures. (2)
- Assess the costs and benefits of maintenance programs and capital improvements. (3)
- Budget annually for overhead costs of operation and perform financial analyses monthly. (4)
Measurement and Calculation Math
- Measure sites. (1)
- Read water and hydro meters. (1)
- Calculate the quantity of water and measure the pH and chlorine levels in pools and hot tubs to determine the amount of chemicals to be added. (2)
Data Analysis Math
- Produce statistics such as the occupancy rate and the average site rate. (2)
- Make estimates when developing budgets or doing business forecasting. (3)
- Speak to suppliers about the availability of needed parts. (1)
- Communicate routinely with customers to take reservations, to tell them where their campsite is located and to recommend services and attractions. (1)
- Instruct their staff on how to perform job tasks, such as putting chlorine in the pool or how to use hazardous materials. (2)
- Speak to contractors about the terms and conditions of planned projects. (2)
- Speak to government representatives, such as public health inspectors, about regulatory requirements and licences. For example, this may involve some negotiation about the application of restaurant and liquor regulations to a special event such as a fish derby or an on-site wedding. (2)
- Speak to media about upcoming events or even campground accidents, attempting at all times to maintain good public relations. (3)
- Handle complaints, solve problems and enforce campground policies. (3)
- Deal with financial challenges such as unexpected operating costs. They examine the budget, revise plans, and find alternate ways to cover operational costs. (2)
- Must ensure compliance with government regulations. They have to make sure that campground guests respect fish and wildlife regulations, while also getting the quality outdoor experience they have come for. (2)
- Encounter problems, such as sewage breaks, power outages or flooding. They solve the problem or put a temporary solution in place. Finding a long-term solution to the underlying problem may require consulting with professionals. (3)
- Deal with interpersonal problems such as complaints from customers concerning sites, staff or equipment. They listen to the problem or complaint, explore solutions, and come to a solution or closure. (3)
- Decide on scheduling for staff. (2)
- Make decisions regarding enforcement of campground rules. (2)
- Decide how to allocate campsites to guests, taking into consideration whether they have children or pets and the type of vehicle they are driving. (2)
- Make decisions regarding the feasibility of expansion or further development. This may be complicated by the uncertainties of the re-zoning process, extensive environmental regulations and a limited budget. (4)
- Make decisions about financing their business. To make these decisions they do market research, explore financing and obtain professional advice in order to assess their ability to pay back a loan. Such decisions can have serious consequences and reversing them can be costly. (4)
Critical Thinking information was not collected for this profile.
Job Task Planning and Organizing
Campground operators have certain daily tasks and may use checklists to keep these tasks organized. They set their own priorities; however, they experience frequent interruptions throughout the day, such as responding to the demands of guests. They have to co-ordinate their work with that of others. Good time management skills are important for campground operators as the order in which they perform their tasks affects the efficiency of the campground operation. (3)
Significant Use of Memory
- Remember the names and faces of guests and their pets.
- Remember statistics.
- Remember site location and availability.
- Remember events. For example, incidents, yearly activities.
- Remember numbers. For example, sites.
- Remember descriptions of vehicles.
- Scan registration forms to find personal information about customers, such as where they are from. (1)
- Phone local businesses and attractions for information in response to guest requests. (1)
- Read advertising and promotional materials to extend local knowledge. (2)
- Phone other campground operators, equipment suppliers and contractors to explore the feasibility of new revenue centres, such as pools, marinas or horseback riding facilities. (3)
- Read industry magazines and attend trade shows to find out about market trends or changes in legislation that may affect their business. (3)
- They write letters and memos. (2)
- They track guests and send advertising to them. (2)
- They track financial information and make projections. (2)
- They use e-mail and the Internet. (2)
- They produce brochures, newsletters and advertising. (3)
Other Essential Skills:
Working with Others
Campground operators work independently. Sometimes they work with a partner or as part of a team.
Campground operators participate in formal group discussions to improve work process or product quality and to allocate responsibilities to their co-workers, manager or supervisor, or other people that they supervise. Sometimes, they use an outside facilitator for these discussions. They also meet with tourism and campground associations, chambers of commerce, other campground operators and with consultants and government officials.
Campground operators continue to learn by taking courses on such topics as Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), first aid and food handling systems.