If you're looking for a job in the restaurant industry, you've made a smart choice. The restaurant industry is the second largest private-sector employer in the United States, and it adds jobs at a stronger rate than all other industries combined. By 2027, the restaurant industry is projected to add 1.6 million jobs.

Where the jobs are

Job opportunities can be found in every segment of the industry, in every state. Much of the restaurant-industry job growth will be in the South and West, especially in Texas and Arizona. Positions that combine food preparation and service, such as foodservice managers, servers, chefs and head cooks, will be most common.

Career options

A position in the restaurant and hospitality industry is more than a job. Statistics show that entry-level work often is a stepping stone to a long career. Nine of 10 salaried restaurant employees started out as hourly workers, and 80 percent of restaurant owners began their careers as hourly restaurant employees.