If you want to know how to find a bartending job or serving job in a restaurant, nightclub, or hotel, we've found a little (actually humungous) website that will make the job search really, really easy. Back when I was looking for a bar gig there were two sources for job postings: newspaper help wanted ads and Craigslist. Both those options required a huge amount of leg work (literally) and usually led to a job that definitely did not fit the description. We were really excited to speak with the folks behind Shiftgig.com, specifically co-founder and CEO Eddie Lou, and think that they've got something really spectacular going on over there.
Here's what we asked and what he said:
This Girl: After pouring through Shiftgig.com, we've discovered how much information, networking, and support you offer your readers. How would you describe your website in one sentence?
Shiftgig: Shiftgig is the service industry network, the premier online community where members connect with each other and businesses to access informative and funny content, jobs and industry deals.
This Girl: Ten years ago a bar patron was ten times more likely to find a man behind a bar than a woman. Do you think those numbers have evened out? Why or why not?
Shiftgig: Four decades ago, women were prohibited from making drinks in some states. About half of Shiftgig's registered bartender members are women. Perhaps it has to do with a cheerful personality of a women that attracts male customers or perhaps women have a better sense of taste and smell. As the social revolution continues to bring equality of race in all jobs, it appears that the same is holding true for behind the bar.
This Girl: Do you ever have companies that specifically request female applicants or is that politically incorrect?
Shiftgig: Companies control their own job post descriptions and each of them have their own hiring guidelines. Shiftgig's search engine doesn't allow businesses to search by age, race, or ethnicity. One statistic that stands out: Profiles with photos tend to get viewed 10 times more often than profiles without photos.
This Girl: When it comes to preparing for one's first bartending job, which camp are you in: bartending school or bar apprenticeship?
Shiftgig: Both are very viable paths into the bartending profession.
This Girl: What is one question that could sink an applicant for a bartending job?
Shiftgig: What nights are you free to work? If you are a first time bartender, you better have a flexible schedule and be willing to work the slower nights to gain experience.
This Girl: What is the best advice you would give to someone who is applying for his/her first job behind the bar?
Shiftgig: Show how you can drive more business: whether it is your good looks, witty personality, or huge social media following, businesses want more customers and more revenue so show them how you can help make that happen.
This Girl: Describe your favorite drink and how you like to make it.
Shiftgig: Vodka soda with lemon and lime (each squeezed twice) but very recently I have switched to Vodka soda with two oranges (one squeeze and then use the straw to stir up the pulp).
Shiftgig is the service industry network, the premier online community where members connect with each other and businesses to access informative and funny content, jobs, and industry deals. With over 750,000 registered members and 17,000 businesses, Shiftgig has become the largest online destination for people in the restaurant, nightlife, hotel and retail industries. For more information about Shiftgig, visit www.shiftgig.com.