Interview

13 Food Runner Interview Questions and Answers

Learn what skills and qualities interviewers are looking for from a food runner, what questions you can expect, and how you should go about answering them.

Food runners are an important part of the restaurant industry. They are the people who bring food from the kitchen to the customer’s table. This position is often the first job that people in the restaurant industry have.

If you are looking for a food runner job, you will likely be asked a few questions about your experience and your knowledge of food. You may also be asked about your customer service skills.

To help you prepare for your interview, we have put together a list of food runner interview questions and answers.

What made you want to become a food runner?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your background and why you chose a career in the food service industry. They want to know what inspired you to become a food runner, so they can understand if you have the passion for the job. In your answer, share two or three reasons that led you to apply for this position. Explain how these reasons relate to the job itself.

Example: “I became a food runner because I enjoy being part of a team. I love interacting with people, and I find it rewarding when I make someone’s day by providing them with excellent customer service. Another reason is that I am passionate about food. I love learning new recipes and experimenting with different ingredients. Being a food runner allows me to be creative and try out new dishes.”

Describe a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer or situation.

Food service can be a challenging job, especially when you’re dealing with customers who are unhappy. Employers ask this question to make sure that you have the skills and experience needed to handle difficult situations. In your answer, try to describe a time when you were able to diffuse a situation or help a customer feel more satisfied.

Example: “I once had a customer who was upset because they didn’t get their food quickly enough. I apologized for the delay and explained that we were short-staffed that day. The customer seemed to understand after that, so I offered them a free dessert on us as an apology.”

What do you think are the most important skills for a food runner?

Employers ask this question to make sure you know what skills are important for the job. They want someone who can work quickly and efficiently, but also has strong customer service skills. When answering this question, think about which skills you have that would be beneficial in this role. Make sure to highlight your communication skills, problem-solving abilities and multitasking skills.

Example: “I think the most important skill for a food runner is their ability to multitask. Food runners need to be able to take orders, deliver drinks and bring out meals all at once. I am great at multitasking because I’ve worked in several high-volume restaurants where we had many customers at one time. I’m used to working under pressure and always making sure everyone gets their food as fast as possible.”

How do you think the food industry will change in the next few years?

Employers may ask this question to see if you are up-to-date on the latest food trends. They want someone who can adapt to these changes and use them to benefit their restaurant. In your answer, try to mention a few of the major food trends that have been in the news recently. Explain how they might apply to this position.

Example: “I think we will continue to see more plant-based foods on menus. This is because many people are becoming more aware of the environmental impact of meat production. I also think there will be an increase in healthy fast food options. People are realizing that it’s possible to eat well while still getting takeout. Restaurants like yours are already offering healthier menu items, which I think is great.”

Describe a time when you had to deal with a difficult delivery or situation.

Food runners often have to deal with challenging situations, such as a customer who is unhappy about their order or an impatient patron. Employers ask this question to make sure you can handle these types of scenarios and remain calm while doing so. In your answer, try to describe how you handled the situation and what steps you took to resolve it.

Example: “I once had a customer who was upset because they didn’t get all of their food at once. I explained that we were bringing out each dish one at a time to ensure everything was fresh. The customer seemed satisfied with my explanation and apologized for being rude. After that, I made sure to check in on them throughout the meal to see if they needed anything else.”

Since this job involves a lot of walking, how do you make sure to take care of your feet?

Employers ask this question to make sure you have the physical stamina and endurance to work as a food runner. They want someone who can stay on their feet for long periods of time without getting tired or hurting themselves. In your answer, share that you are physically fit and healthy. Explain how you take care of your feet by wearing comfortable shoes and taking breaks when needed.

Example: “I am very active in my daily life, so I already have good foot health. However, I always wear comfortable shoes while working. If I feel any pain or discomfort, I take a break until it goes away. I also try to walk at a steady pace instead of running back and forth.”

What would you do if you saw an employee not following proper food safety procedures?

Food safety is a major concern for restaurants, and employers want to make sure you understand the importance of following proper procedures. In your answer, explain that you would politely ask them to follow the rules and report it to management if they don’t comply.

Example: “I have worked in several restaurants where I’ve seen employees not properly washing their hands or handling food with gloves on. If I see this happening, I will politely remind them of the proper procedure and encourage them to wash their hands immediately. If they refuse, I will inform my manager so they can handle the situation.”

Are you able to work in a fast-paced environment?

Employers ask this question to make sure you can handle the pace of a busy restaurant. They want someone who is able to work quickly and efficiently while still maintaining quality customer service. In your answer, explain that you are comfortable working in a fast-paced environment and have experience doing so. Share an example of how you handled a similar situation in the past.

Example: “I am very comfortable working in a fast-paced environment. I’ve worked as a food runner for two years now, and it’s definitely one of the most hectic positions in the restaurant. However, I’m used to being on my feet all day and multitasking. I always try to be respectful of customers’ time but also get their orders out as quickly as possible. It’s important to me that everyone gets their meal at the same time.”

What experience do you have with customer service?

Food runners often interact with customers, so employers ask this question to make sure you have experience interacting with people. Use your answer to explain what customer service skills you have and how they help you in your role as a food runner.

Example: “I’ve worked in the restaurant industry for five years now, and I’ve always been a food runner. In my previous position, I was promoted to server after two years of working there. This promotion required me to learn new skills like taking orders and answering questions about the menu. Throughout this process, I learned that I am very good at multitasking and communicating with others. These skills helped me become an effective server.”

What would you do if you noticed that a guest at your station was unhappy with their meal?

An employer may ask this question to learn more about your customer service skills. They want to know that you can handle complaints in a way that makes the guest happy and maintains their satisfaction with the restaurant. In your answer, explain how you would approach the situation and what steps you would take to resolve it.

Example: “If I noticed that a guest was unhappy with their meal, I would first apologize for the inconvenience. Then, I would offer them something else from our menu or a discount on their bill. If they wanted to speak with a manager, I would let my supervisor know so they could help solve the issue.”

Have you ever made a mistake while working as a food runner? If so, what was the mistake and how did you resolve it?

Employers ask this question to learn more about your problem-solving skills and how you resolve issues. When answering, make sure to focus on the steps you took to fix the mistake and what you learned from it.

Example: “When I first started working as a food runner, I was so focused on getting my orders out that I forgot to give one of my customers their drink. After realizing my mistake, I immediately apologized to them and brought them their drink. They were very understanding, but I learned that no matter how busy I am, I need to always double-check all of my orders before leaving the table.”

Are you capable of carrying multiple full trays at once?

Employers may ask this question to determine whether you have the physical strength and stamina to perform your job duties. They want to make sure that their employees can safely transport food from the kitchen to customers’ tables. In your answer, explain how you plan to ensure your own safety while carrying multiple trays at once.

Example: “I am capable of carrying two full trays at a time. I always use my arms to support the weight of the tray rather than relying on my wrists or fingers. This helps me avoid injury when transporting heavy meals. When I’m walking with multiple trays, I try to walk as quickly as possible so I don’t hold up other servers.”

What would you do if you accidentally dropped a tray of food on the floor while delivering orders to customers?

Food runners often have to carry trays of food and drinks while moving quickly through a restaurant. Employers ask this question to make sure you know how to react in an emergency situation like this one. In your answer, explain what steps you would take to clean up the mess and minimize any damage. Explain that you would apologize to customers for the mistake and offer them free desserts or discounts on their orders.

Example: “I would immediately start cleaning up the spilled food as best I could with napkins and paper towels. Then, I would find my manager so they can help me get more supplies to finish cleaning up the mess. After that, I would go back to each customer who had ordered from that tray to apologize and give them a discount on their order.”

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