Tips For Choosing A Caterer For A Corporate Event
A key element of any corporate event is the food and drink. It’s important to ensure that attendees have access to a variety of well-prepared refreshments to keep them fuelled throughout the day. Good quality food also helps to make the event memorable and enjoyable, so that everyone can get the best out of the occasion.
Furthermore, food is not just about keeping energy levels topped up. It’s an integral part of our culture, and attendees will be using breaks and mealtimes to socialise as well as eat. It’s a time when new contacts are formed and ideas are exchanged. Therefore the catering needs to be chosen carefully.
Here are some top tips for choosing the best caterers for your event.
What type of event is it?
The kind of catering you choose needs to be appropriate to the type and size of your event. Is it a formal networking event for senior people in the industry, or a team-building away day for more junior staff members, for example? Formal catering may require a plated dinner service, while a more relaxed buffet might suit a training-type event.
What are the needs and expectations of the guests?
Ask yourself what type of food the attendees will be expecting. Do you need extras such as hors d'oeuvres or a cocktail hour? What is the cultural and social background of the majority of the guests? Would they appreciate more traditional food or a more eclectic mixture of street food?
It is now standard to cater for special dietary requirements, with vegetarian and vegan options on the menu. It is also good practice to check in advance if any attendees have allergies such as gluten intolerance or nut allergies, so food can be prepared separately for them.
What is the size of the venue?
The catering may be limited by the space and facilities available. Is there room for individual tables and seating for plated meals, or would a buffet be more appropriate? The location, number of guests, and any specifications of the venue may need to be taken into consideration.
Local caterers who already know the venue may be the best option, and some venues may have a list of caterers that they prefer to work with.
Does the caterer have previous experience of your type of event?
You need to be sure that the caterer will be able to handle the size, theme, venue, and overall ethos of the event with no difficulties. Ask about their previous experience and certifications, and check out references and reviews.
Online reviews are not always trustworthy, so if possible speak to past clients to get the best opinion. Some catering companies will offer preview tasting sessions so that you can get a clearer understanding of what they have to offer.
Review your costs
Finally, it’s important to ensure that the catering costs fall in line with your budget. Have realistic expectations from the start and make sure that there are no hidden costs involved.
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