The catering business is a great alternative for people who may be running a restaurant but don’t want to deal with the overheads anymore. Or it could be a way to supplement your restaurant’s income. It’s also a great way to test the waters before opening one. Getting into catering is a bit easier than opening a restaurant, but it’s still not easy. You have to make sure that you have everything down and know what to expect when getting started. Let’s take a look at a few tips for people thinking of starting a catering business.
What is Your Niche?
The very first thing you have to do is think of a niche. It will be easier to make it in this business if you have a unique niche that is underserved but still has demand. You should also consider what type of client or event you want to work on. You don’t necessarily have to cater for weddings or parties. You could decide to focus on commercial clients, for instance.
As far as food goes, being original could pay. You may be able to differentiate yourself by offering ethnic dishes, for instance. If you know how to cook foreign cuisine, this could be a great way to stand apart and offer a service few people are offering where you are.
Think About Equipment
The next step is thinking about installations and equipment. As a caterer, you will need to invest in things like a truck and warming cabinets. You will also have to decide if you’re going to be renting or buying a facility full-time or only rent kitchen space when you need it.
If you decide to get a space, then you may want to get a deal that includes equipment. However, you will have to plan for future breakdowns as you may not know how long these appliances have left. This would be a good time to start looking at food machinery term loans and know what to expect so you’ll be prepared in case something happens.
Focus on Your Customer Service
The most important thing after the food is your service. This is why you will need to give yourself the tools needed to offer the best service possible to clients.
We would suggest that you invest in catering software immediately. Sure, you can always go for pen and paper, but you’re only asking for trouble. If you’re dealing with many service providers at once and have plenty of events lined up, you want to be able to access information on any client fast. You also want to keep tabs on tasks that have to be completed.
Catering software will also allow you to keep your eyes on your inventory. Running out of important supplies at the last minute can be disastrous for a catering business. You don’t want to get stuck because you didn’t have enough eggs or flour, and not delivering could put you in serious trouble. Don’t leave things to chance and use the technology that’s available to you.
These are just a few things you should keep in mind when starting a catering business. Make sure that you follow these tips to the letter and speak with someone who’s familiar with the business before making the jump.