Unit of competency details

SITHFAB016A - Plan and monitor espresso coffee service (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to SITHFAB401 - Plan and monitor espresso coffee serviceRe-worked Elements, Performance Criteria, Required Skills and Knowledge to more fully articulate content. Prerequisite removed. 17/Jan/2013
Supersedes and is equivalent to THHADFB05B - Plan and monitor espresso coffee service 31/Dec/2010

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 01/Jan/2011


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110103 Food And Beverage Service 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110103 Food And Beverage Service 25/Nov/2008 
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Modification History

Not applicable.

Unit Descriptor

Unit descriptor 

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to plan and monitor espresso coffee service, including ordering coffee, equipment and commodities; appropriate storage; and supervising coffee service.

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.

Application of the Unit

Application of the unit 

This unit applies to master and senior baristas and requires substantial specialist knowledge of coffee, its history and presentation in a variety of hospitality settings. The unit applies to hospitality and catering operations where espresso coffee is extracted and served.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not applicable.


Prerequisite units 

This unit must be assessed after the following prerequisite unit:

SITHFAB012B Prepare and serve espresso coffee.

Employability Skills Information

Employability skills 

The required outcomes described in this unit of competency contain applicable facets of employability skills. The Employability Skills Summary of the qualification in which this unit is packaged will assist in identifying employability skills requirements.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the required performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised  text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge and/or the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria




Plan coffee service.


Develop coffee menus and select menu items taking into consideration profit requirements, market focus and demographics, customer preferences and enterprise policies.


Select suppliers and roasters, and make purchases according to enterprise requirements, budget and quality.


Liaise with suppliers and roasters to ensure coffee meets enterprise requirements.


Provide specialist advice on coffee and coffee service.


Develop and update appropriate information on coffee .


Respond to customer questions related to coffee and espresso coffee service.


Provide accurate information to colleagues and staff on coffee and coffee service.


Promote coffee and coffee appreciation at appropriate opportunities.


Display accurate information  on coffee and coffee styles for customers where suitable.


Monitor quality and service of coffee.


Identify desirable characteristics  of superior espresso coffee.


Evaluate coffee beans to ensure freshness and appropriate oil content.


Monitor grind to ensure correct particle size according to enterprise requirements and customer preferences.


Monitor environmental variations affecting dosage, and adjust grind and dose accordingly.


Evaluate espresso coffee quality  through visual and other sensory means and by applying indicators of quality .


Monitor coffee extractions and service according to enterprise practices, ensuring quality and consistency.


Diagnose faults and problems  in quality of coffee.


Seek and follow up feedback on coffee quality from customers and staff.


Deal with problems according to nature of problem and enterprise practices.


Ensure coffee and commodities are stored appropriately in suitable containers and conditions.


Ensure coffee items are presented correctly and attractively with suitable accompaniments.


Assess quality and temperature of milk served and ensure it is texturised correctly.


Monitor machinery and equipment.


Monitor espresso coffee machine and other equipment  for efficiency and reliability of operation.


Monitor temperature and water pressure according to enterprise requirements.


Ensure that environmentally sound cleaning, maintenance and waste disposal and recycling regimes and practices are in place.


Identify need for new equipment or parts taking into account relevant considerations  and evaluate options.


Ensure that self and others follow safe practices and procedures in using machinery and equipment.


Identify situations requiring the attendance of a trained service technician or licensed electrician or actions that might invalidate warranties.


Schedule service calls and replacement of worn parts at appropriate times.

Required Skills and Knowledge


This section describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level, required for this unit.

The following skills must be assessed as part of this unit:

  • hygienic and safe work practices related to making, serving and storing coffee and coffee products and service equipment
  • work practices for the management of large coffee orders
  • diagnosis of problems and faults in coffee
  • methods to ensure efficient use of product and to minimise wastage
  • customer service and communication skills to liaise with other team members, clarify requirements, provide information and listen to and interpret information and non-verbal communication
  • numeracy skills to calculate and measure doses of coffee, and to calculate quantities for ordering supplies and costs.

The following knowledge must be assessed as part of this unit:

  • cost and profit issues associated with the provision of espresso coffee service, including product, equipment and pricing of menu items
  • flavour characteristics of varieties, types, blends and styles of coffee
  • physical and chemical properties of coffee, and the effects of roasting and grinding
  • special qualities of coffee arising from country and area of origin, roasting techniques, flavour enhancers and essences, type of grind and freshness
  • physical properties of varieties of milk
  • history and culture of coffee
  • presentation aspects of coffee
  • technical operation of machine
  • diagnosis and rectification of problems and faults in coffee machines and equipment
  • types of grinders and how they work
  • impacts on flavour of coffee of machines, cleanliness of machines, temperature and pressure
  • regulatory and legislative requirements impacting on coffee and coffee service.

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, the range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • in-depth knowledge and understanding of coffee and coffee service
  • mastery of skills in extracting coffee
  • management of coffee service.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • access to a coffee station with a range of industry-current equipment, including:
  • at least three different types and makes of coffee machine
  • thermometer
  • coffee grinders or mills
  • serviceware, including cups, saucers, glasses, mugs and flatware
  • weighing and measuring equipment
  • storage bins in appropriate sizes and materials
  • blind or blank filters
  • tampers
  • espresso cleaning detergent
  • bins for discarded pucks or grind tubes
  • demonstration of skills using at least three different types and makes of coffee machine
  • access to a range of coffee types and commodities
  • work activities that allow the candidate to develop and maintain systems for the service of coffee over a period of time.

Methods of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • case studies to assess abilities to evaluate coffee, and diagnose and rectify a range of faults
  • written or oral questions to test knowledge required to plan and monitor espresso coffee service
  • review of workplace documents developed by the candidate, including operational procedures and maintenance schedules for espresso machines and equipment
  • testing of candidate's ability to analyse and solve typical problems in coffee service or coffee quality
  • review of portfolios of evidence and third-party workplace reports of on-the-job performance by the candidate.

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • SITXOHS002A Follow workplace hygiene procedures
  • SITXINV002A Control and order stock
  • SITXMGT001A Monitor work operations
  • SITHPAT012A Plan patisserie operations.

Assessing employability skills 

Employability skills are integral to effective performance in the workplace and are broadly consistent across industry sectors. How these skills are applied varies between occupations and qualifications due to the different work functions and contexts.

Employability skills embedded in this unit should be assessed holistically with other relevant units that make up the skill set or qualification and in the context of the job role.

Range Statement


The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording in the performance criteria is detailed below.

Sources of information on coffee  include:

  • talking to product suppliers, roasters and other baristas
  • memberships of associations and industry bodies
  • reading general and trade media, and supplier information
  • attending trade shows
  • attending coffee tastings
  • reading coffee reference books
  • internet.

Accurate information  for customers may include:

  • coffee items, varieties and available accompaniments
  • prices
  • brochures about coffee types and grinds
  • coffee education programs.

Characteristics  of coffee include:

  • colour
  • appearance, including opacity or transparency
  • aroma
  • flavour
  • taste
  • freshness
  • presentation.

Evaluate espresso coffee quality  includes:

  • use of visual and other sensory means, such as smelling and tasting coffee
  • customer feedback
  • consistency of product.

Indicators of quality  include:

  • industry and enterprise standards and requirements
  • customer feedback
  • repeat business
  • sales of particular items, coffee types and styles.

Faults and problems  include:

  • equipment breakdown or malfunction
  • incorrect or inappropriate use of equipment
  • poor quality control or maintenance
  • breaches of OHS requirements.

Monitoring espresso coffee machine and other equipment may include :

  • removing shower screens and diffusers if appropriate, cleaning using wet method and reassembling
  • fine tuning or arranging fine tuning of machines according to manufacturer recommendations and warranty requirements.

Equipment considerations include:

  • characteristics and advantages of size and capacity
  • cost
  • reliability
  • service availability
  • training in operation
  • reputation of supplier.

Unit Sector(s)



Competency field

Competency field 

Food and Beverage