Hotel line cook job benefits

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Joined Jul 11, 2015
Has anyone worked as a line cook for Hilton before? Just got a job as cook...yay..what are the benefits and perks? This restaurant and Hotel is brand new from the ground up so we are all starting fresh. Im excited. Pay sucks but maybe more room for promotion??? thanks..any advice will help. This is my first "real" line cook job..Happy Thanksgiving!:
 
1,832
538
Joined Aug 15, 2003
 
Has anyone worked as a line cook for Hilton before? Just got a job as cook...yay..what are the benefits and perks? This restaurant and Hotel is brand new from the ground up so we are all starting fresh. Im excited. Pay sucks but maybe more room for promotion??? thanks..any advice will help. This is my first "real" line cook job..Happy Thanksgiving!:
Hotels and large chains have positives and negatives, just like any other job. Surely you discussed benefits and perks at your job interview, yes? Perks would be things like staff meals, transportation re-imbursement, etc. I would make sure you know what perks are available to you and to take advantage of them when you can. 

I don't know about your benefits, again that is something that should have been discussed as part of your hiring process. Large hotel chains will most likely offer health care packages, 401(k), PTO, etc. You should know about these ASAP. 

One of the good things about jobs with large hotel chains is the ability to potentially move around. You could target a city/region, or a job, and search the company employment database for openings. So if you decide in, say, 2 years you want to move to Seattle, you can potentially stay with the company and change jobs. It can be a good way to move and learn in different kitchens while having the job security and tenure that goes with being with a company for a long time. 

A lot of times though (not all, but a lot) these jobs are very rote and leave little room for creativity and craft. A lot of hotel operations are big, "soulless" and more concerned with profit margins, ease of execution/assembly line, and habit. So you most likely aren't going to be pushing culinary boundaries (burgers, sandwiches, breakfast items, etc) while you work. 

Another good thing is the ability to get your hands into many many different outlets in the culinary world. One day you may do a huge banquet, the next day you may be covering room service, another day you might do ice sculpting, and the last you might cook a private wine dinner for a big wig client. So you could gather lots of experience in many facets of the industry in one place. 

This is a brand new hotel, so you have a great chance to start off on the right foot and be part of a positive team beginning. My advice would be to rise above, don't get involved with petty workplace backstabbing/gossip/BS and focus on being the best you can be. Be the first on to show up for your shift, be faster and more organized than you were yesterday. Take on extra work for the chefs/sous chefs, if you have time. Clean, clean clean. Chef's love initiative and hate micromanaging. If they SEE you taking action to not ever just "stand around" they will LOVE you. There is NEVER nothing to do in a kitchen. Even if you are covering room service and have no orders, you could be cutting mirepoix for stock, you could be prepping soup kits for the next day, setting up LTO, making burger pattys, etc. Literally a 1000 things to do. Clean stuff that doesn't get cleaned as much as it should--pull out the drawer from the lowboy and scrub the tracks. Consolidate the walk in. I hope you get my point. I guarantee you that, even with how crazy it is/will be for opening, the chef's and sous chef's will notice. 

Take notes! Bring a notebook, WRITE things down. Write down recipes, procedures, mise en place lists, prep lists, plating diagrams, etc. Your chef will love it if he/she shows you how to do something, and you write it down so next time you DON'T HAVE TO ASK AGAIN. 

Good luck, exciting times. 
 
5,509
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Joined Oct 10, 2005
Depends,

Usually hotels are union.

Usually unions function on one, and only one thing:SENIORITY

Doesn't matter if the senior is a chronic alcoholic, stealing, and spending most of fhe time in his personal stall in the john, he gets 40 hrs a week, the new guy gets a shift or two. Thats seniority.

It used to be, that if you can manage to get 40 hrs/week for 3 consecutive months, you get a pay bump. After 9 consecutive months you get full time status. Like I said, the new guys might get a shift or two. After christmas rush, no one wants to know yor name. Oh, union dues for f/t and p/t are the same

Hope things have changed since then....
 
982
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Joined Jun 23, 2015
"Usually hotels are union."

Foodpump,

That may be north of the border.  In the southern US right to work states most ore non union.
 
45
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Joined Jul 11, 2015
Hey thanks for all that great advice. Im excited and nervous. Can you recommend any training  or you tubers who have  good videos I could be studying to help me thru this transition and for the future? Like BOH stuff? Prep , Inventory cost and control..safety .etc?? Thank you! 
 
4,702
935
Joined Aug 21, 2004
 
Can you recommend any training  or you tubers who have  good videos I could be studying to help me thru this transition and for the future?
I would say just take this attitude with you on your first day. Keep your eyes, ears, and mind open. I can read and look at videos about swimming all day long, but somehow it just ain't the same as getting in the pool. You will do fine.
 
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Joined Jul 5, 2015
There are a lot of benefits from working in a hotel kitchen. The greatest benefit is the opportunity for growth & education. In a hotel kitchen there are not just line hours but banquet hours as well. Always keep an eye on as to what banquets is doing. Work on platter presentation, dealing with difficult "allergies/intolerances", work your way up to leading a group of people for a function, etc. With line work you can see what is left over from banquets and then use that for a feature in the restaurant. Yes, often hotel restaurant menus are all encompassing, but it's with the features that you can show your abilities. If you have a local farmer's market go and speak with the farmers and see what they have. Speak with your Exec or CDP, and say what if we bought x from farm y, and then made z dish, what do you think? It will show enthusiasm & ambition. 

Other benefits could include staff meals (not just kitchen but whole hotel, which could then have a real staff room and not just two milk crates and a table that you need to prop up with your knee!), Hotels will often have a laundry service for uniforms. As others have mentioned there is the opportunity to move with in the chain or ownership group. There may even been employee room rates for other hotels, if you like to travel. 

I see hotel kitchens as a teaching place. i always welcome co-op students whether they be high school or from the local college that has a culinary program. These students will work not just alongside me but also with the staff, which helps them to grow even if it's supervising just one person. That also will help with their resume in the future.
 
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Joined Feb 17, 2010
Stay with it. This will be a great learning opportunity, keep your eyes open and your mouth shut. Watch what the other departments are doing. Always find something to do, don't ask the chef for something to do, you may regret it. Learn something new every day and take lots of notes.
 

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