Baker Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Baker, or Pastry Chef, is in charge of preparing baked goods for sale to customers. Their duties include creating recipes, ordering ingredients and coordinating baking schedules to produce breads, cakes, pastries, pies, cookies and other goods.

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Baker duties and responsibilities

Bakers are often responsible for more than just baking. They may have a large team of employees to manage, or they could be working independently. A successful candidate will be expected to perform the essential duties and responsibilities of a Baker, which can include:

  • Ensure profitability by maintaining an accurate record of baking operations.
  • Manage needed supplies and inventory levels.
  • Direct and supervise the production staff’s activities to make sure that products are up to standards.
  • Decorate baked products using glaze, icing and other toppings to achieve a finished appearance.
  • Assess the quality of raw materials before baking.
  • Conduct research to develop original recipes for products.
  • Ensure the proper storage of baking utensils.

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Baker Job Description Examples

What does a Baker do?

Bakers can be employed at restaurants, bakeries, hotels, catering companies, grocers, manufacturing facilities and cafes to manage or assist in filling customer orders and providing fresh inventory. They assess the quality and freshness of ingredients each morning and follow recipes to measure ingredients, mix dough, mold it into attractive shapes, bake it at the correct temperature, remove it from heat at the appropriate time, let it cool, add glazes and place each type of bread and pastry in the correct display or package. Bakers may also decorate cakes and cookies, wash dishes and sanitize the kitchen each day.

Baker skills and qualifications

A good Baker should have basic math, technological and practical skills. The right candidate will typically possess time management, communication, organizational and resource management skills. You may find this list of skills to be helpful when writing a job description:

  • Detail-oriented
  • Flexibility to work around customer demand
  • Ability to work with team members to solve problems
  • Good planning skills
  • Ability to lift heavy items for an extended time
  • Ability to read and follow recipes

Baker salary expectations 

On average, a Baker earns $12.24 per hour. Their exact salary can vary depending on factors like their experience level and location in the U.S. Having a food science degree or catering experience can greatly increase a Baker’s salary. Common benefits include a flexible schedule, employee discount and paid time off.

Baker education and training requirements

Even though baking requires no formal education, a candidate should have at least a high school diploma. Candidates who have trained at technical or culinary schools tend to be at a competitive advantage. Such training lasts for one to two years and covers basic math, food safety and nutrition. Once in the system, the new hire may need on-the-job training to gain any additional needed skills. A new hire may, therefore, start as an apprentice or trainee and learn the basics of decoration, icing and baking. 

Baker experience requirements

Candidates should have some experience with cake decoration techniques and have expertise as a Baker. They should also be familiar with professional kitchen equipment, such as dough sheeters, blenders and mixers. Many job duties can be learned on-the-job, and some kitchen tasks can be practiced at home.

Job description samples for similar positions

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Frequently asked questions about Bakers

 

What does a Baker's Assistant do?

Baker’s Assistants make it easier for Bakers to manage baking responsibilities by serving customers, stocking goods, sorting ingredients, taking orders, answering phones, delivering orders, restocking supplies and cleaning dining and kitchen areas. Baker’s Assistants prepare pans and measure ingredients so that Bakers can easily access the materials they need. They make sure that goods on display are fresh, dispose of items that are past-date, knead dough and prepare bulk orders for customers. Baker’s Assistants are also in charge of preparing complimentary menu items like sandwiches, coffee and tea.

 

What are the positions in a Bakery?

Depending on the volume of customers they serve, bakeries can employ several Bakers, Head Bakers and Assistant Bakers in addition to other staff. Servers, Cashiers, Dishwashers, Store Managers, Delivery Drivers and Custodians can all work at a bakery to facilitate sales. Some Bakeries have a dedicated Cake Decorator who uses icing, frosting, sugar and chocolate to create attractive images on cakes, cupcakes and cookies. Other roles that can work with a bakery on a contract basis include Graphic Designers, Accountants, Marketing Specialists and Bookkeepers.

 

What are the different types of Bakers?

There are three main types of Bakers: Bakery Chefs, Pastry Chefs and Production Bakers. Bakery Chefs oversee the entire operations of a Bakery, including tracking inventory and training apprentice bakers. They have a managerial role and are often responsible for deciding what kinds of baked goods to offer each day. Pastry Chefs are bakers who specialize in producing desserts and often work at restaurants to create and execute their dessert menu. Production Bakers focus on baking large amounts of breads, rolls, muffins and other baked goods that can be produced in bulk.

 

What are the characteristics of a good Baker?

A good Baker is both creative and analytical. Bakers have to understand the chemical and physical reactions involved in baking and be artistic enough to create an attractive end product. They are highly communicative and organized so that they can correctly schedule baking times and produce customer orders in a schedule. They are also focused and enjoy working in a fast-paced environment.

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