Opening and Closing Checklist for Restaurant Servers

Something that a restaurant deals with everyday is going through a daily checklist. This means keeping the restaurant organized and ready for the current day and the next. Keeping a daily checklist makes sure that what needs to get done, actually gets done. This helps create a constant workflow so that everyone knows what to do and that everyone knows exactly what they need to do.

Keeping this opening and closing checklist means effectively making multiple lists for each part of the restaurant. This also gives staff members a chance to look at the list when the restaurant isn’t busy so that they can also cross of items during the day as well. Crossing off the list also allows the restaurant manager to verify that the items were checklist

Types of Checklists We Recommend Keeping:

  • Manager: Opening, Closing, Shift Change
  • Sidework: Front of House, Back of House
  • Prepwork:
  • Kichen:
  • Server: Opening, Closing, Shift Change
  • Barista / Bartender:¬†Opening, Closing, Shift Change
  • Housekeeper:

What to Put on the Checklists?

For Shift Change – Everything needed to prepare and communicate any important information.

For Closing – Counting the register, checking tips, and making sure that everything is ready for the next day for the next staff to open.

Cleaning – Making sure that everything is thoroughly sanitized and put away. This includes putting away extra food, organizing, and wiping down what needs to be cleaned.

When opening a restaurant everything should have been put away and prepared the day before for the current day. Shift changes should go smoothly and allow the new employee to start work right away and know any import information. Closing should leave the restaurant, clean, and ready for the next day.

We recommend laminating your checklist and even emailing it to employees so they have a backup copy. Keeping the checklists visible in workstations also serves as a reminder of the current duties of the day. The act of physically crossing off each item and having it signed off ensures that things that need to get done are getting done on the checklist.