a dark blue TraitLab logo
Sign up

Have an account? Sign in

Career profile Dishwasher

Also known as Dish Machine Operator (DMO), Dish Room Worker, Dish Technician, Dish Washer, Dishwasher, Kitchen Helper, Kitchen Steward, Utility Aide


Also known as Dish Machine Operator (DMO), Dish Room Worker, Dish Technician

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Enterprising
Pay Range
$18,670 - $32,280 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Time Management
  • Active Listening
  • Speaking
Knowledge Areas
  • Administration and Management
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Customer and Personal Service
Core tasks
  • Wash dishes, glassware, flatware, pots, or pans, using dishwashers or by hand.
  • Place clean dishes, utensils, or cooking equipment in storage areas.
  • Sort and remove trash, placing it in designated pickup areas.
Is Dishwasher the right career path for you?

Would Dishwasher be a good fit for you?

Explore how your personality fits with Dishwasher and hundreds of other career paths.

Get started with TraitLab

What does a Dishwasher do?

Dishwashers clean dishes, kitchen, food preparation equipment, or utensils.

What kind of tasks does a Dishwasher perform regularly?

Dishwashers are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Wash dishes, glassware, flatware, pots, or pans, using dishwashers or by hand.
  • Place clean dishes, utensils, or cooking equipment in storage areas.
  • Sort and remove trash, placing it in designated pickup areas.
  • Sweep or scrub floors.
  • Maintain kitchen work areas, equipment, or utensils in clean and orderly condition.
  • Clean garbage cans with water or steam.
  • Receive and store supplies.
  • Stock supplies, such as food or utensils, in serving stations, cupboards, refrigerators, or salad bars.
  • Transfer supplies or equipment between storage and work areas, by hand or using hand trucks.

The above responsibilities are specific to Dishwashers. More generally, Dishwashers are involved in several broader types of activities:

Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems
Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

What is a Dishwasher salary?

The median salary for a Dishwasher is $25,270, and the average salary is $25,600. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Dishwasher salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Dishwashers earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Dishwashers earn less than $18,670 per year, 25% earn less than $21,060, 75% earn less than $28,960, and 90% earn less than $32,280.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Dishwashers is expected to change by 19.0%, and there should be roughly 78,800 open positions for Dishwashers every year.

Median annual salary
Typical salary range
$18,670 - $32,280
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)

What personality traits are common among Dishwashers?


Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Dishwasher are usually higher in their Realistic and Conventional interests.

Dishwashers typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Also, Dishwashers typically have moderate Conventional interests. Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.


People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Dishwasher tend to value Relationships, Support, and Independence.

Most importantly, Dishwashers moderately value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Second, Dishwashers somewhat value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Lastly, Dishwashers very slightly value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Dishwashers must consistently demonstrate qualities such as cooperation, integrity, and dependability.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Dishwashers, ranked by importance:

Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.

What education and training do Dishwashers need?

Working as a Dishwasher may require a high school diploma or GED certificate.

Dishwashers need anywhere from a few days to a few months of training. Usually, an experienced worker could show you how to do the job.

Educational degrees among Dishwashers

  • 36.7% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 42.3% completed high school or secondary school
  • 13.1% completed some college coursework
  • 3.7% earned a Associate's degree
  • 3.6% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 0.4% earned a Master's degree
  • 0.2% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Dishwashers

Dishwashers may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as administration and management, public safety and security, or customer and personal service knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Dishwashers might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Public Safety and Security
Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Education and Training
Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Food Production
Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.

Important Abilities needed by Dishwashers

Dishwashers must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Dishwashers need abilities such as manual dexterity, arm-hand steadiness, and finger dexterity in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Dishwashers, ranked by their relative importance.

Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Arm-Hand Steadiness
The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Finger Dexterity
The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
Multilimb Coordination
The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
Trunk Strength
The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without "giving out" or fatiguing.

Critical Skills needed by Dishwashers

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Dishwashers frequently use skills like time management, active listening, and speaking to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Dishwashers, ranked by their relative importance.

Time Management
Managing one's own time and the time of others.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.