Steps for Employing an Apprentice Chef for your Restaurant

Monday 28 September, 2015


They’re a treasure for your company, a delight for your dishes and can boost team morale in the kitchen – yes, we’re talking about the ever-in-demand Apprentice Chef! It’s a smart investment, but there are several need-to-knows for adding a superstar Apprentice Chef to your team.


  1.    Are you willing to commit?

    Employing an apprentice or trainee is a big commitment. Look at the long-term picture, be realistic and decide whether you can commit to the whole length of the planned apprenticeship. If you expect your other hospitality professionals to be committed and loyal, then you should be too. Being a great leader means leading by example! 

  1.     Not just the dog’s body

    Apprentice Chefs join a kitchen team to learn! This is a learning experience, a chance for self-development and to nurse their passion for food. An Apprentice Chef expects to learn, learn, learn, and to get more than a taster of a busy, high-pressure kitchen environment. It is an opportunity for them to absorb the priceless skills and experience that sitting in a classroom doesn’t teach them. So don’t treat your Apprentice Chef like a dog’s body and task them with menial and tedious jobs. Throw them into the deep end of the kitchen - with plenty of training and support of course! 

  1.     Make way for creativity!

    People who choose to become a Chef understand that it is a lifestyle choice. They expect to work flexible, anti-social hours, to be underpaid for the hard labour they do, to be on their feet for most of the day and to be in a high-pressure environment. It is a mentally and physically challenging profession. However, it is their burning passion for food and being creative with it that makes an Apprentice Chef choose to go down this career path. So be open-minded to creative suggestions from an Apprentice Chef; just because they are in training doesn’t mean they don’t have some stellar ideas up their soon-to-be Chef sleeve.  

  2.     A two-way learning opportunity

    This is an opportunity for your Hospitality business as well as for them. Employing an Apprentice Chef means the opportunity to get feedback from an objective perspective. Apprentice Chefs tend to be open-minded, tech-savvy, out-of-the box thinkers so take advantage of this, and learn more about how you can improve as an employer. The Apprentice Chef might also have some constructive criticism for the business, or might suggest trends that could enhance your business.

  1.     Finally - the Checklist

    When you employ an Apprentice Chef directly through your business, you are responsible for:
  • Managing their employment and training   
  • Assigning a supervisor
  • Ensuring your business has the right range of work and facilities to give hands-on and on-the-job training
  • Making sure the Apprentice Chef has access to the appropriate tools and equipment

    At OneShift we have a talent pool of thousands of reliable, passioante and eager to learn Apprentice Chefs looking to begin in your restaurant immediately, find out more at

    You can find out more about this in the NSW Apprentice Guide here 
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