Dishwasher Position Instructions


The dishwasher position is more than just washing dishes. Here is an overview in list format, followed by specific instructions for list item.

  1. Monitor tables
  2. Clear tables
  3. Tips at Tables
  4. Reset tables
  5. What to Tell Customers if they ask for help
  6. Bring dishes to dish area
  7. Empty bus pan, sort dishes, and fill dish racks
  8. Run the dish machine:
  9. Return clean dishes to appropriate storage areas
  10. Empty and refill silverware soak tray and red and green buckets
  11. Operate the garbage disposer
  12. Help cook resupply kitchen
  13. Keep dish tables cleared and wiped down
  14. Make yourself useful at all times, no standing playing with your phone
  15. Sweep the kitchen and dining room
  16. Empty garbage containers and put new liners in
  17. Pull the dish machine food scrap tray
  18. Chemicals
  19. Your compensation
  20. Uniform
  21. Breaks

1. Monitor Tables (for dirty dishes)

Regularly walk through the dining area monitoring tables for customers who have left. Also monitor for tables where the customers remain but they appear to be done eating and ask, "may I take your dishes?"

2. Clear Tables (Bus)

As customers have left and the tables need to be cleared and reset, bring a bus pan to the table, and remove all remaining dishes, cups, glasses, and silverware into the bus pan. Put placemats and napkins into the garbage, not the bus pan.

3. Tips at Tables

Tips that are left on the tables by customers are not yours. These are the servers tips. Point out the tips to the servers, and allow them to collect the tips for deposit into the tips container. If the server(s) tell you you can remove the tips from the tables and deposit those into the tip container, that is different. However, unless on each time you work, this has been explicitly clarified with each of the servers on duty, do not collect the tips, only point out the tips to the servers as you clean dishes.

4. Reset Tables

After having cleared the table, begin to reset the table immediately as follows.

  1. Get a clean and sanitized terry towel from the red bucket (red buckets explained later).
  2. Wipe down the table.
  3. Get two placemats and set those on the table. (Two placemats no matter the size of the table.)
  4. Retrieve and place a table tent between the two placemats.

5.What to Tell Customers if They ask for Help

If it's something you have been taught to do, you may assist the customer. However, if not, politely explain that you are a busser and will alert their server.

6. Bring Dishes to Dish Area Do not clutter the dish area with lose dishes. As bus pans become full, bring those one at a time to the dish area.

7. Empty Bus Pan and Sort and Fill Dish Racks

Bring the full buspan to the dish sink. Place the bus pan to the right of the rinse sink. Place a dish rack to the left of the dish sink. Sort and distribute the dishes, cups and glassware, and silverware, as you empty the bus pan as follows:

  1. Grab one plate or bowl at a time, dump any food scraps into the sink and rinse the dish as needed with the overhead sprayer.
  2. You will have to scrub some dishes with the overhead sprayer brush to remove caked on food such has egg yolk
  3. One-by-one place the dish or bowl into the dish rack
  4. Place the cups and glasses into the overhead cup racks
  5. Sort the silverware into the silverware rinse tray
  6. Throw out any other paper or straws into the garbage
  7. Rinse the bus pan and return it to the bus pan storage area

8. Run the Dish Machine

  1. Washing Dishes:  When you have fulled a rack of dishes, slide the rack into the dish machine and close the door. The machine will start automatically. The machine goes through a wash cycle and then a rinse cycle. The rinse cycle contains a pre-measured amount of bleach that is mixed with the water to sanitize the dishes. When the machine stops, open the door and remove the rack from the other side of the machine. Allow the dishes to cool a moment.
  2. Washing Cups and Glasses:  As you fill overhead cups and glasses racks (half-racks), put those into the dish machine, two half-racks will fit in the machine.
  3. Washing Silverware:  Allow the silverware to soak for a while in the silverware soak tray. Locate the silverware wash bin and the flat dish rack. Put the dirty silverware into the silverware wash bin and place it on the flat rack. Run the machine. When it's done, return the clean silverware to the clean silverware trays out front. There are one or more of those. Ask the servers where they are.
  4. Miscellaneous Items and Pots: There are some miscellanious silverware items such as steak knives or extra long spoons. Ask the server where those go. You will encounter miscellenous items such as measuring cups, tea pots, and other miscellanous items. Just ask the cook or server where these go. There are very few miscellaneous items. Some pots need to be scrubbed with a metal scrubber before putting in the dish machine. Locate the metal scrubber or ask where it is.

9. Returning Dishes to Appropriate Storage Areas

When the dish machine is done running and you remove the rack from it, stack the clean dishes and return the dishes as follows:

10. Emptying and Refilling Red and Green Bucket and Silverware Soak Tray

  1. Green Bucket:  On the dirty side of the dish table, there is a green bucket. The green bucket is filled with a mixture of hot water and soap. The green bucket water is used for washing out soiled terry cloth wiping towels used out front on the tables and in the kitchen. As you need a clean unsoiled towel, swish it in the green bucket, ring the towel out, then deposit it into the red bucket. As the green bucket water gets cold or dirty, empty it and refiill it using the hot water/soap dispenser for that purpose.
  2. Red Bucket(s):  There are at least two red buckets. One is at the dirty side of the dish table right next to the green bucket. It contains a mixture of warm water and bleach mixed to 100 ppm (parts per million) of bleach to water. The bleach, mixed with water, is a sanitizer. It sanitizes the towels that you wash in the green bucket and the towels in the red bucket sanitiizes the tables when wiped with those towels. As the red bucket water gets cold or dirty, empty it and fill it from the bleach/water dispenser for that purpose.
  3.  Silverware Sorting Tray:  The silverware sorting tray mentioned earlier has a mixture of water and silverware soaking liquid. As the silverware water gets dirty, empty it and refill it from the dispenser for that purpose.

11. Operating the Garbage Disposal

The garbage disposal is located in the pre-rinse sink drain. As you dump food scraps from plates, and scrub and rinse them with the overhead sprayer, the garbage disposal should be run periodically. Locate the on/of switch. Turn it on. Water is automatically injected into the disposer as the disposer motor runs.

12. Help Resupply Kitchen or Server Supplies

If the cook or server instructs you to get certain supplies from the storage room, or walk-in refrigerator or freezer, do so as best you can asking for help in identifying items until you become familiar with items.

13. Keep dish tables cleared and wiped down

There are two sides to the dish tables. The dirty side and the clean side. It is your responsibility to clear the dirty side by washing the dishes, and the clean side by returning the clean dishes to where the items go. Also wipe both sides. Wipe the dirty side with the towel(s) in the green bucket (described later); and wipe the clean side with the towel(s) in the red bucket (described later).

14. Make Yourself Useful

This is not a job to stand at the dish sink until you have dishes to clean. Monitor tables and find things to do. Also do not stand around looking at your phone. In fact, anytime you do look at your phone, which should be not often, remove yourself to the back room out of view of customers.

15. Sweep the Kitchen and Dining Room

As needed from time to time, and at the end of the shift, locate the broom and dustpan. Sweep the kitchen and pick up the sweepings into the dustpan. Empty the dust pan into the garbage. Do the same with the dining room. A dining room with napkins, paper, and other debris looks sloppy. Monitor the dining room, including under tables and chairs, and go sweep those areas regularly.

16. Empty Garbage Containers

Before the end of the shift, empty all garbage containers in the kitchen and out front. There is the large garbage container located under the dirty side of the dish table. There are two others in the kitchen, one by the toaster area at the cook line, and another by the hand sink. Out front, there is garbage by the booths at one end of the server line, and another inside the beverage counter cabinet. Ask the cooks and servers where these area as needed. Locate the garbage bags from the janitor area in back. Ask where those area as well.

17. Empty Dish Machine Scrap Tray

There is a food scrap tray under the dish machine. You'll readily see it. Pull the tray at end of shift and empty the contents into the sink. Return the tray.

18. Chemicals

There are several chemicals in use. Monitor and refills these. For the Dish machine there is solid chemical containers on the top of the machine. Replace those as needed from the chemical storage area in the janitor area. For the dish machine there is a five gallon container of bleach. That is not likely to go empty.  There is a one gallon container of bleach for the red bucket bleach water dispenser. If this goes empty, get a new gallon of bleach from back. Be sure to save and reuse the yellow cap from the empty gallon on the new gallon. It is a special cap that is needed to make the bleach come out properly. There are solid chemical dispensers on the wall for the green bucket water dispenser and the silverware soak tray dispenser.

19. Your Compensation

Your pay is a cash wage that is paid to you via direct deposit every two weeks. Another part of your compensation is $2.50 per hour "tipped-out" to you from the servers. At the end of the shift, look to the server/cooks who are sorting and counting the tips in the tip container to provide to you $2.50 per hour times the number of hours you worked. So an example is a 8 am to 2 pm shift is 6 five hours, so you should receive $15.00. When you clock out, you will be prompted to report the tips you received.

20. Uniform

For this position, please wear the following uniform items:

21. Breaks

You can have a couple of beverage breaks and a meal break as follows:

  1. Beverage Breaks & Beverage Policy:  A couple of brief beverage breaks is allowed per shift. These may include a free beverage described here:
  2. Employee Meal Policy:  You may have a 15 minute break for an employee meal. You can come in early before shift for this, or you can do this during your shift. If during the shift, take this break at a time that is less busy. Ask the servers and cooks what is a good time for this.

Certification of Completion

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