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A sexy choice of career

24 November 2005
A sexy choice of career

Contract catering has been a sexy career choice for some time now, which is why some of the country's top chefs have been attracted to the sector. The likes of John Campbell and Michael Caines have offered their services as training consultants, while Michelin-starred chef Anton Edelmann quit the Savoy for Sodexho Prestige and Gary Rhodes has a deal with Compass to front Rhodes Twenty Four restaurant.

As with any job, however, the key is to choose your employer carefully - and there's plenty of choice. If you want the cut and thrust of a big player, look to international giants such as Compass, Sodexho and Aramark. For the style of top restaurants consider the likes of Charlton House or BaxterStorey, which operate executive dining rooms in blue-chip City firms. And for those of you with creative flair, try Digby Trout or more specialist event caterers such as the Admirable Crichton.

Contract caterers are everywhere - oil rigs, airports, schools, colleges, castles, museums - and comprehensive training programmes are offered by most companies to help you move swiftly up the career ladder. Training is a hot topic in this sector, so read on if you want to find out how contract catering can fast-track your career.

PositionBusiness and industry - London
LowNormalHigh
Unit management
Up to 500 on site £18,000 £24,000 £27,000
500-plus on site £22,000 £28,000 £34,000
Operations manager £28,000 £35,000 £42,000
Regional manager/director £35,000 £40,000 £48,000
Business and industry - rest of UK
Unit management
Up to 500 on site £15,000 £18,000 £23,000
500-plus on site £18,000 £22,000 £28,000
Operations manager £27,000 £31,000 £35,000
Regional manager/director £32,000 £37,000 £45,000
Specialist markets - London
Unit manager
Up to 500 on site £15,000 £19,000 £24,000
500-plus on site £18,000 £22,000 £28,000
Operations manager £22,000 £25,000 £32,000
Specialist markets - rest of UK
Unit manager
Up to 500 on site £13,000 £16,000 £19,000
500-plus on site £15,000 £19,000 £24,000
Operations manager £19,000 £23,000£26,000

The trainer's view >>

The B&I contract >>

The rock ‘n' roll world of catering >>

The school contract >>

The retail contract >>

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