Carrabba’s Interview Questions & Tips

Hiring process information for an interview at Carrabba's

How Many Interviews Will I Go Through?

Many applicants begin the Carrabba's hiring process online and then receive a phone call to schedule job interviews onsite after formal review of information submitted by hiring personnel. Hosting, serving, and bartending positions generally only require a single interview to receive a job offer at the restaurant of choice.

Special Considerations for Servers

Sometimes serving candidates must go through a brief series of job interviews with two or three Carrabba's managers. Each interview, regardless of position, lasts around 20 minutes and culminates with a job offer or formal dismissal from the hiring process.

One-on-One Interviews

The most prevalent form of job interview used during the Carrabba's hiring process includes 1:1 question-and-answer sessions. Informal in nature but generally intensive, interviews press workers for information regarding personal and professional interests, shift preferences, and company history. For serving jobs, applicants often undergo menu tests in which applicants must recite menu items from memory. Studying daily food and drink offerings greatly benefits prospective workers during the Carrabba's interview process. Additional Carrabba's interview questions used to screen entry-level applicants include: "Have you ever worked for a restaurant before?", "Where do you see yourself going with this opportunity?", and "How would you deal with a difficult customer/coworker/manager?"

Know the Work Environment

The Carrabba's work environment often boasts fast paces and loud settings. Applicants must be able to maintain respectable attitudes and expedient means of executing job duties in order to gain employment. Personable, energetic, and pronounced individuals with sound customer service and communication skills best fit ideal molds for prospective workers. Applicants should wear formal attire, i.e. dress shirts and ties or sensible dresses or skirts and tops to fit the company culture regarding wardrobe.

Final Assessments

Although some applicants may bypass the assessment phase of the Carrabba's hiring process, workers must sometimes complete personality exams, often consisting of 150 multiple choice questions, to finalize the employment offers. Interview questions found on the assessment pose hypothetical situations workers in all positions may encounter while working for the popular restaurant chain. The form helps hiring personnel better determine eligibility for work. Take care in completing all stages of the hiring process and expect to spend at least a week going through all necessary channels before receiving a bid for employment.

Carrabba’s Host Interview Video

Video Transcript

Interviewer: Please describe your job title and primary duties.
Carrabba’s Host: I applied to be a host. As a host, you really want to be … you want to welcome people with a smile, you want to know how to greet people and manage people, even with their anger. If they even ask you, “Hey, how do you deal with people in a situation that you don’t, per se, you like the way that they act?” You would have to deal with that situation accordingly so you don’t cause a scene and you just want everything to flow smoothly throughout the restaurant. Get people in and out. It is an actual system, it’s not just a restaurant. You’re actually a part of it now.

Interviewer: What was the work environment like?
Carrabba’s Host: It’s very relaxed when it’s not busy, but when it is busy you have to know how to go fast-paced. You cannot be slow. If you’re slow then they’ll see that and they won’t give you as many hours until you improve. That’s one key thing. You have to know how to be fast when it’s acquired of you. Because it gets hectic.

Interviewer: How would you describe the application and interview process?
Carrabba’s Host: It’s pretty relaxed, to be honest. You sit down with the co-manager, or the manager under the actual owner of the restaurant. She entails, or she tells the owner if he wants to meet with you. You meet with her first, under my experience, then she’ll offer a time for you to go back. There’s two interviews and then you’ll have the interview of, “Hey, you’re welcome into the family at Carrabba’s.” They really do look for specific things. Especially in the way you dress. He even mentioned, my owner, he was like, “You guys were the only people who applied for this job and came in in a nice shirt, nice shoes and slacks.” That’s a huge thing to tell something about how you respect where you’re wanting to work at.

Interviewer: What questions did the interviewer ask during the job interview?
Carrabba’s Host: They asked me where did I graduate from or if I’m in school. If I’ve ever been arrested before. That happened because on paper it could seem like not a big deal but in person it could be a bigger deal than it is. They ask you a series of questions about how is your personality, how do you interact with people in certain situations. Because you’ll run into situations you’ve never thought of before. People getting angry because they thought that they were on the wait list before them. People just get … it’s really hectic. If you really answer those questions with a positive, chest out, like I will stand up for what I have to actually do, then you’re, honestly, going to be fine. That’s what they’re looking for. It’s honestly how you handle every situation.

Interviewer: How were you notified that you received the job?
Carrabba’s Host: It took a few days, three days or four days, from the co-manager to the actual owner, and then from the owner to the next step where he hired me was about, I would say, a week or five days. They do call you and let you know a few days after that appointment, we want you to come in this day. At that time you can kind of take a deep breath and they’ll either tell you yes or no. Then you go in or you don’t.

Interviewer: What other advice would you give to a job seeker looking to gain employment?
Carrabba’s Host: Prior experience, if you had any of any sort, working in the job market, not even restaurant business, you want to say that. Because it proves that you respect authority because someone’s telling you what to do at every moment. The hosts that have been working there are telling you, the new guy, to do something. If you don’t do it, and if you forget a table number and sit somewhere where they’re not supposed to be sat, then it’s like, “Oh, you just messed up the entire system.” The main host has all this planned out. We do it on the IPad now. You’ve just got to be focused. You can’t lose track. You can’t come in with a bad attitude or else you’ll not get as many hours and eventually … you know.

Carrabba’s Host Interview Video

Video Transcript

Interviewer: Please describe your job title and primary duties.
Carrabba’s Host: The title of the job was host. That was what I was originally hired as. That was to clean tables, bus the tables after the families left. There was dirty plates, cups, dishes, kids throwing stuff everywhere, to clean all that stuff up. Help the servers out if they need food to be brought to the tables. We have an electronic, basically like a big monitor, iPad up front. We do everything electronically now where you actually have to set the tables to a specific amount of people and what server, so it’s all electronical. If you know how to use iPads and iPods, stuff like that, it’s definitely going to be one of these necessary, key things that you’re going to need to know how to use. You’re going to need to know how to use all the touch screen stuff like that. You’ll also need to take phone calls if people are calling ahead to do the reservations. You’ve got to be able to take the phone calls and open the door. You got to make sure that you get the door for people. The manager hates it when he sees people having to open their own door when they’ve got a kid in their arms and the rest of their food in a bag bringing it home. So opening the door, cleaning the tables, busing the tables answering phone calls, writing down the reservation, having a smile on your face while all this hectic stuff is going on can be hard, but that’s definitely a key to it too. Just being genuine and nice to all the customers so they feel like a family. That’s the main job for the host.

Interviewer: What was the work environment like?
Carrabba’s Host: The work environment was very nice. The servers, the managers, everyone was very nice. The only part that got very hectic was where the food was actually coming out of the kitchen. Cooks are trying to read the orders; we’re trying to seat people. Everyone’s got to know where the tables are going, whose getting fed, who’s going where, what’s going where, whether a table needs a high chair for a cute little kid or a booster seat for a little kid, or we run out of crayons. Everyone’s got to work together as a team. If you’re one of those people that can’t work in a team and can’t communicate in group work it’s not the place for you. You’ve got to learn how to voice your opinion when you need something. You got to let people know when you need help. When you’ve got five things on top of your head and you need someone’s help, you’ve got to let them know. It’s just one huge family team working together to get one accomplished goal, including the managers. Everyone’s just there to help so you got to know how to work in a group.

Interviewer: How would you describe the application and interview process?
Carrabba’s Host: Application and interview process was pretty easy. I did the application online. I was just looking for restaurant jobs. I was kind of sick of minimum wage jobs. I wanted something with a little bit of the tip, cash money in it. I did the online form, and then called and set up a personal interview. I wanted to meet the manager. I walked in, in a suit and a tie, in nice clothes, ready to meet him and said, “Hey is there a manager here?” I just wanted to get my face in the door. You see all these names on applications online but I thought it was important to put a name to my face so when they’re looking at my application they remember oh he’s the kid who came in looking nice. He wants this job. He’s got eagerness. He wants it. That was my first. He set me up with a interview, a first level interview, with an Assistant Manager. Before I got to the big cheese I had to go to the little one. I had a interview with the Assistant Manager. That was the first interview and if he liked me he was going to send me to another interview with the Head Manager. Things went really well with the Assistant Manager. He was really nice. He just asked me simple questions. Why do you want to work here? What’s your background? What do you need the money for? Stuff like that. I was just going to school. Things went well and I met with the Head Manager and he loved me too. He actually had my brother and I both at the same time, we were twins so we actually did the whole interview process together. They thought that was kind of cool because they have a whole family concept of family, everyone’s a family member at Carrabba’s so it was kind of cool to hire us both as twins. He thought it could really add a little edge to the host team if you have the two brothers always working together. It would be oh, these are the twins, they’re always working together so it was kind of cool.

Interviewer: What other advice would you give to a job seeker looking to gain employment?
Carrabba’s Host: Explain why you’re good working in a team. If you have some past experiences working in teams, definitely let the managers know that because they love to see that you can work together because that’s all that a restaurant is. Just be yourself. You don’t want to be someone that you’re not. Once you get put in that work environment if you lie to get the job it’s not going to work out. You’ve got to always have energy. If you’re tired and you’re sluggish and you don’t want to move fast, it’s going to be a problem because restaurants are very high paced. Very go, go, go, go, go. You’ve got to know what’s going on. You’ve got to have your head in the game. You can’t be thinking, can’t be taking a five minute break. There are no breaks. You’ve always got to know what’s going on. Once you start getting everything together, the interview was really easy. The managers are always nice. They didn’t really hound you too badly or act mean or anything like that. They just wanted to know why you would benefit their team. It was a good job.

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3 thoughts on “Carrabba’s Interview Questions & Tips

  1. Emily

    I’ve already had my first interview and that went well. Then I went back in and took the personality & basic education test and did great on that as well! This week I’m going in for my final interview – which (to my understanding) is a situational/behavioral test. Even though I have experience and skills the restaurant business, I always seem to “freeze up” on this part of the hiring process. Is there any way I could get some examples from the test so I can be better prepared? Thanks,

    Reply
  2. awesome person

    I came in, filled out an application and took the basic knowledge test. I passed and they gave me an interview two days later. Day after the interview I got the job.. as a hostess. The behavioral/situational test is basically like if you were busy and a co-worker needed help what would you do.

    Reply
  3. emily

    Does anyone know if carrabba’s drug test?

    Reply

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