How To Get A Bartending Job - 4 Ways To Guarantee You're The Next Bartender To Be Hired

So you're wondering how to get a bartending job. Obviously if you have previous experience as a bartender, it will be that much easier to get your next bartending gig. That being said, however, previous bartending experience does not guarantee anything. Follow these 4 tips on how to get a bartending job and you'll be head and shoulders above all the other applicants.

Bars typically receive a minimum of 5 - 10 resumes each month without any advertising or soliciting of any kind. Your average bar will have about 20-50 bar resumes on file at any time. And it's this file that they go to when they need to hire someone from outside the establishment. If your resume is going to be in this file, you'll need it to stand out from the crowd.

So that brings us to Tip #1 of How to Get a Bartending Job - Create a Stellar Bartender
Resume Your bartender resume is the only thing that is going to separate you from the rest of the applicants - initially anyway. Therefore, in addition to making sure that there are no spelling, grammar and / or punctuation errors, you want to make sure that it flows well and highlights any previous skills you have that relate well to the bartending position you're applying for. Think about your previous jobs and what skills are transferable to bartending.

So if you had a job as a cook at McDonald's, you'll want to highlight cleanliness. If you had a job as a cashier at a retail clothing store, you'll want to highlight money handling and customer service skills. If you had a job as a janitor, you'll want to highlight time management and cleanliness. If you've ever planned any events / parties, make sure to highlight this fact. If you've bartended private functions or parties for friends / family, make mention.

Okay, that took a lot of brain power - I think it's time to hit the town for a drink.

Tip #2 of How to Get a Bartending Job - Do Your Research
You'll want to visit bars / pubs / clubs where you're thinking about applying. Go and see what the places are like, what kind of clientele they bring in and what their bar staff is like.

Take a notepad with you and jot down anything that sticks out about the place. Write down any food / drink specials you see advertised, what special promos / events they have going on, what they have for entertainment etc. Next, make note of their staff - how friendly / professional / helpful etc they are, what they are wearing, how they interact with customers. Write down anything that sticks out in your head - you'll be using this information to craft your bar cover letter as well as for your upcoming bar interview.

Tip #3 of How to Get a Bartending Job - Craft the Perfect Bartending Cover Letter
In your bar cover letter, you want to point out that you've had experience running many different types of events. Make mention that you understand the importance of staying fresh and giving customers a reason to come back every day. That you realize it's part of the bartender's job to provide input to new promotions and specials and that you're fully prepared with a list of your own (of course, make sure that you make a list of promotions that you implemented in your last job that were successful - or ones you've seen in other establishments which were successful). If you don't know how to write a good, professional bartenders resume or bar cover letter, have a professional write it for you.

Tip #4 of How to Get a Bartending Job - Stand Out In The Interview
One thing that works well during a bar interview is to mention bar promotions or events that you have either seen work well in other establishments or that you've had success with in a place you've previously worked for. Whether it's the bar owner or bar manager who you're interviewing with, what they really care about is the bottom line - how much money their bar is making. If you can show them that you're interested in the same thing, it will go a long way towards your getting the job.

Most bartenders just think about themselves and the money they're going to make each night. They don't consider the establishment they work for. If you can show your interviewer that you understand that the busier the bar, the better it is for the bartenders - and do so by suggesting new and creative bar events and promotions - it will put you miles ahead of the other applicants.

If you liked the article and want more, head over to for tons more free bartending tips, tricks and strategies. Founder Reese Richards has been in the bar industry since 1992 - he'll teach you all you need to know to start bartending, better your bartending skills, increase your tips, bring in more customers or run your bar more profitably.

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