Restaurant hiring outpaced overall employment growth nationwide year-over-year, and one in five eateries plans to increase its staffing in the second half of the year, according to the National Restaurant Association.
The industry trade group, in its quarterly employment report, said restaurant employment rose 2.7 percent nationally from June 2011 to last month, compared with the 1.3 percent overall increase in total employment nationwide.
Hudson Rhiele, an association senior vice president, called the hiring climate in his industry "an improved, but not optimal, environment."
Still, there are positive takeaways for California's $64 billion restaurant industry, the nation's largest with more than 1.4 million employees.
Rhiele said restaurant hiring in California outpaced national hiring both in the industry and overall year-over-year.
Restaurant-related hiring also grew in the Sacramento area as payrolls in accommodation and food services grew by 1,900 jobs between May and June, according to the state's Employment Development Department.
Restaurant supervisors and managers are also in demand locally, according to state Employment Development Department labor market data released Friday.
Sacramento-area employers posted more than 500 online ads for the positions in June, among the area's 10 occupations with the most job postings, according to the EDD's Help Wanted Online report released Friday.
Recovery remains slow in California, but even modest overall job growth creates demand for restaurant services. In short, hiring follows demand, Rhiele said.
And restaurants are chasing so-called pent-up demand.
One in three people told the association in recent polling that they are not dining out as often as they would like, down from the 40 percent who said same in 2011.
Rhiele said the restaurant industry hopes to convert that pent-up demand into more hiring.
Nursing is No. 1 for local online ads, report says
Nursing, computers and retail jobs lead the list of local online ads, according to the latest labor market report from the state's Employment Development Department.
Postings for registered nurses continue to hold down the top spot, with 1,690 ads in the Help Wanted Online report.
Computer systems analysts, with 771 posts, and retail salespeople, with 758 ads, placed second and third, respectively.
Sacramento led area cities with the most job ads posted with 18,692, followed by Roseville (2,179), Folsom (1,581) and Rancho Cordova (1,539).
Sacramento's health care employers continued to lead the way in employers' job postings as well.
Catholic Healthcare West, with 584 postings, topped the field, followed closely by Sutter Health, with 565 online ads, and Kaiser Permanente with 284.
The San Juan Unified School District posted 249 ads, while the employment firm Allegis Group rounded out the top five with 198 postings.
Ask the job expert
Do you have career or job-hunting questions?
Ask Terri Carpenter, one of our "Ask the Experts" writers who can answer your questions online.
As a veteran career counselor at the Sacramento Employment Training Agency, Carpenter has plenty of expertise in résumé writing, job-skills training and career counseling.
To post your question or see her advice to others, go to www.sacbee.com/ask.