Imagine your operating budget is being brutally slashed. You are being asked to reduce costs of the corporate lunches. Luckily, you have some experience with corporate lunch catering in Atlanta and already have some ideas on how you might approach the problem. The following 7 suggestions might get you started on saving the corporate lunch by reducing the cost, and making you a winner with your boss:
- Buy plattered food for buffet style presentation or individual sack lunches. Keep choices to a minimum. Look for meatless entrees, which will be less expensive than beef or chicken.
- Inquire if caterer is preparing food for another event on the same day. If you order the same food, can you get a discounted price?
- Plan to purchase some items, such as fruit and drinks, at the grocery store yourself.
- Check with several caterers to compare prices and service. Get referrals from corporate meal planners and other people you know.
- Inquire if the caterer will give you a discount if you order for several future meetings at one time.
- Talk with the caterer about your budget. Be open to their suggestions on how to reduce the cost.
- Ask about saving a delivery charge if you pick up the food.
An internal change that would save money is to have an accurate number of people who plan to attend. Today’s planners are familiar with the challenge of getting this number. Many times, you are forced to offer the caterer your best guess and have a plan for leftover food.
If incorporating significant changes in menu, venue, and style of meal, you may receive negative feedback from your diners. Remember, the meal can be enhanced with a linen tablecloth, fresh flowers, and an inviting room. These factors contribute to the overall experience and will be welcomed by any catering business. After all, you are making their food look good with your effort. The budget may have been cut, but you have the power to influence the value of the meal for everyone.