A guide on how to order killer corporate catering for a corporate event

If you’ve ever been in charge of organising the food and drink for a meeting at work, then you will know how stressful it can be. In addition to keeping your time and budget constraints in mind, you’re also dealing with a full spectrum of diets and tastes in the office. From picky eaters to the hyper-healthy, it can sometimes feel impossible to order corporate catering that will please everyone.

This step by step guide on how to order the perfect catering for your next meeting will put your mind at ease.

Next time you’re asked to manage the food and beverage for a meeting, consider outsourcing to a professional office caterer. An experienced corporate catering service will take away the stress of having to micro-manage every step of the ordering process. At Order-In, we make the process even easier by providing an easy-to-use platform to bridge the gap between you and hundreds of different catering companies. Whether you need catering for small groups, a regular in-house huddle, an important client meeting or you're catering for 100 people on a budget – there are hundreds of delicious catering menu options to choose from.

Still feeling overwhelmed? Don’t be. This step by step guide on how to order the perfect catering for your next meeting will put your mind at ease. 

The basics: confirming your budget

Before you dive in and start tossing up between fresh Vietnamese paper rolls or gourmet sausage rolls, answer the following questions:

  • What type of meeting is it?
  • Who, and how many people will be attending?
  • What’s the purpose of the food? Are you just after snacks or a full meal?
  • What are your budget constraints?

Having this framework is vital for a successful working lunch, meeting or conference.

corporate catering for lunch meeting

Understand your space

Assess the space where the meeting or event will take place. If it’s an all-day conference or training session, you might consider meeting packages with our all-in-one event catering menus. If your colleagues are going to be tucked away in private meeting rooms, space will be limited and will call for something simpler, like a few well-placed platters, or easily distributed individual lunch boxes. There are catering solutions for all space constraints. Never exceed the space you have and ensure that the food will be accessible to all.

Once you have all this sorted, you can move onto the exciting part - the food!

How to pick the perfect food

This is the most critical step in organising catering for a function. From catering classics and Instagram-worthy gourmet grazing tables, to delicious international catering options, the choice alone can seem daunting.

Here's your guide on what type of food to order

The sheer number of corporate caterers available today can be overwhelming. In fact, Order-In has over 1000 independent suppliers around Australia to choose from! But don't stress - we'll help you narrow it down so you order the right catering for your event or function.

Consider the time of day

The time of day for your meeting will impact the kind of food your guests are craving. Whether you’re planning an early morning breakfast meeting, a working lunch or a corporate afternoon tea, you’ll want specific catering to suit that occasion. You may require a buffet catering solution for that evening meeting, coffee, tea and breakfast-style snacks for your morning meeting, or for special events such as cocktail parties, opt for delectable finger food or grazing tables.

Mix it up! Choose a theme and cuisine

Sick of sandwiches and muffins? Don't get stuck in a rut. Variety is key to keeping employees happy and coming back for more! If the meeting is a reoccurring affair, why not pick a new theme each time? With Japanese, Mexican or even Indian catering services, there are an endless array of delicious menu options to chose from. Don’t be afraid to get creative and have some fun with your corporate and event catering! In the lead up to Australia Day, try a modern Australian grazing platter. For the Olympics, make it an international spread and order from two different specialty food services. Here are some international lunch catering ideas to help you get started.

international catering for your next working lunch

Does the style of food match your brand?

Keep your company’s personality in mind when you are deciding on what catering to go with. You could be aiming to impress some clients, just bringing the team together or celebrating an office achievement, so the type of catering you choose should reflect your company. The snacks needed for a client meeting in a high-end law firm will differ from a working lunch at a creative start-up. The food you order is a reflection of your business, so make sure you stay on brand.

Catering for special diets

One of the most important steps in how to organise catering is ensuring nobody walks away hungry. Whether your guest is vegetarian, vegan, gluten freedairy free, or simply health conscious, making sure you have all the special dietary requirements covered is essential. As a general rule of thumb, we suggest making roughly 25% of your total order vegetarian and gluten free.

You’ll be surprised with how many suppliers can cater for any special diet requirements. We have 1000’s of options that showcase the best in the catering business. You’ll never be bored with what we put on the table.

Treating food as fuel

While that chocolate fountain for your office Easter celebration may seem like a great idea, the 3pm sugar crash may not be as desirable. Always aim for a balanced spread and keep some healthy options on the table. If you want to go the extra mile, try swapping out your typical afternoon biscuits for bliss balls, or swap soft drinks for some bubbly kombucha or nourishing pre-made smoothies instead.

delicious healthy office catering options

Photo credit: Raw Trader

Preparation is key

Organisation is vital for successful business meeting catering. Ideally, it’s best to start planning one to two weeks in advance. But, let’s face it, last-minute requests are also a reality at work and sometimes a few days (or even a few hours) of notice is all you have.

At Order-In, you can simply place your order the day before. But for office catering emergencies, our express service has catering options that only require 90-minutes of notice. 

If time is something you have plenty of, make a list and brief schedule of what needs to be done and when. Make sure you answer the following:

  • Who will clear the space for the meeting?
  • Who will receive the order?
  • Who will set up the food and drink station?
  • Do you have enough plates, cutlery and napkins?
  • Do you need space in the fridge for the food or drinks?

 

Download our corporate event planning checklist here >>

 

make your next working lunch or meeting a success

Corporate catering made easy

Next time you’re asked to manage the food and beverage for a meeting, consider outsourcing to a professional office caterer. An experienced corporate catering service will take away the stress of having to micro-manage every step of the ordering process.

At Order-In, we take the guesswork out of choosing the right corporate caterer and we're with you every step of the way. We make the process even easier by providing an easy-to-use platform to bridge the gap between you and hundreds of different catering companies. From catering for small groups to special events, we'll have a catering menu to suit your needs. So, what are you waiting for? Create an account and start planning your next event with delicious food. You’ll be earning major brownie points with the rest of your team in no time.

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