Dishwashers are the unsung heroes of the back of house kitchen staff. Tucked away in the back of the kitchen, they provide kitchen staff with clean kitchen tools and ensure serving dishes are up-to-par, adding to the dining experience. After all, you aren’t serving your clients off of paper plates, are you? Find experienced and reliable dishwashers with these dishwasher interview questions.
10 Dishwasher Interview Questions
Why do you want to work at [restaurant]?
Determine the candidate’s motivations for applying to your open position and evaluate if they prepared for the interview with this dishwasher interview question.
An underprepared dishwasher may recite a textbook response. The ideal candidate can answer specific details about your restaurant. Learn if the candidate has personal connections to the cuisine you serve, has an interest in the restaurant’s values or other.
What qualities do you think a candidate should have to be successful in this position? Why?
Gain insight into the candidate’s understanding of the role, and test whether the candidate read your dishwasher job description. The ideal candidate will have a thoughtful answer that will incorporate elements of the job description. Take this dishwasher interview question a bit further, and ask the candidate to explain their answer.
How do you maintain focus and speed while performing work in a fast-paced environment?
Let’s face it—dishwashing isn’t a glamorous job. It can be messy, and after working hours on your feet in a fast-paced environment, it can be exhausting. That being said, it’s still a vital role that must be filled in your restaurant.
An ideal candidate will know that while tiring, dishwashers are important team members and must hold their own. This question calls to attention the candidate’s time-management skills and their ability to self-motivate doing monotonous tasks.
Do you have experience working with commercial dishwashing machines?
This isn’t your grandma’s kitchen. In a professional kitchen setting, dishwashers are expected to use commercial dishwashing machines to clean large loads of dishes at a time.
The ideal candidate should have adequate experience using commercial machines, explaining the type of machines they’ve used. To expand on this question, ask about the procedures they’d use for tools or dishes.
How do you juggle the different aspects of your work in this role?
If you thought dishwashers just operate the commercial dishwasher, you thought wrong! Dishwashers have several responsibilities, from restocking dining areas and cook stations to supporting other back of house kitchen staff.
Learn how the candidate might prioritize tasks, as well as analyze their time-management skills. Both are vital to the role, and the dishwasher should be confident in their ability to do both in a stressful environment.
Tell me about your previous employer. What did you like and dislike about the previous employer?
Our experiences tell us a lot about the people that we are. Ask your candidate about their previous work experience. If the candidate did not like that the previous work environment was high-stress and fast-paced, they might not enjoy working in your restaurant. As the saying goes, “If you can’t handle the heat, get out of the kitchen.” Likewise, candidates that badmouth a previous employer present potential red flags. The ideal candidate can speak constructively about their previous experiences and lessons learned.
How would you deal with a coworker who took their frustrations out on you?
Even in the most highly-regarded restaurants, high-stress situations can get the best of the back of house kitchen staff. While it shouldn’t be tolerated, tensions can come to a breaking point.
Determine how a candidate may respond to a frustrated colleague. Do they escalate the situation or use appropriate communication skills to diffuse the situation to complete the shift?
What would you do for a coworker who was struggling?
Inevitably, there will come a time when the dinnertime rush or Sunday brunch crowd becomes too much, overwhelming the dishwashing team. These situations are defining moments for the entire team.
Is your candidate a team player who rolls up their sleeves and digs deep to motivate the team to cross the finish line? Or do they crumble under pressure, complaining to other workers about the coworker’s shortcomings? Obviously, you want a team player, but you’d be surprised to find candidates who are inclined to sit on the sidelines.
Describe a time when you made a mistake. How did you fix the mistake, and how would you prevent it from happening again?
This dishwasher interview question separates the great candidate from the lackluster applicants. Be it broken dishes, dirty utensils or cloudy glasses, mistakes happen. The candidate must be able to acknowledge the mistake and correct the behavior to keep the meal service running.
What is your availability? Are you able to work night/weekend shifts?
On top of long hours, dishwashers are often expected to stay later to complete dishes from the last service and prepare tools for the next shift.
This dishwasher interview question helps you determine what you can expect from the candidate in terms of time commitment. Additionally, you can disqualify candidates who don’t meet your shift needs.
Find Reliable Dishwashers without Interviewing
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