How to Scale Your Catering Order Management Efficiently and Unlock Untapped Revenue


MAY 23, 2024


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To navigate the complexities of scaling catering order management, industry-leading restaurants such as Tacombi and Bareburger have honed in on various innovative solutions. By leveraging advanced technology, such as the Lunchbox Catering platform and order management solution, and strategic methodologies, these trailblazers have revolutionized their operations. Tacombi, for instance, experienced a remarkable 50% increase in catering sales within the first eight months of adopting the Lunchbox platform. Similarly, Bareburger has seen a significant 24% increase in month-over-month catering sales since implementing these innovations. Their success underscores the power of technology and strategic thinking in directly impacting customer satisfaction and meeting the demands of a rapidly evolving catering landscape. As we delve deeper into their preferred technologies and strategies, you'll discover actionable insights to propel your own catering business and gain a competitive edge toward unprecedented growth.

Plan Ahead with Precision

Effective order planning is crucial for seamless execution in the catering business laying the foundation for successful operations. Utilizing Lunchbox's Catering Calendar, restaurants can streamline the scheduling process, allocate resources effectively, and optimize logistical operations. This comprehensive tool offers features such as real-time availability tracking and customizable scheduling options, empowering office managers and catering managers to confidently manage their calendar and ensure impeccable planning. By leveraging the Catering Calendar’s capabilities, restaurants can minimize the risk of overbooking or scheduling conflicts, maintain control over their operations, and consistently deliver exceptional service that exceeds customer expectations.

Tailor to Customer Preferences

In today’s competitive catering landscape, personalization is paramount to winning and retaining business, specifically in the food at work space. According to a recent survey by ezCater, 34% of companies struggle to find options that cater to everyone's tastes, while 30% face challenges in meeting specific dietary needs. Lunchbox's innovative order level notes feature empowers these companies to address these challenges head-on. With the ability to seamlessly accommodate individual preferences and special requests, restaurants can ensure that each order feels tailor-made to the customer's needs. Whether it's adjusting menu items, accommodating dietary restrictions, or modifying quantities, Lunchbox enables restaurants to deliver a truly personalized experience. By prioritizing flexibility and attention to detail, restaurants can build a loyal customer base, stand out in a crowded market, and drive growth and revenue.

Design a Catering-Centric Menu

In the recent survey conducted by ezCater, it was revealed that 71% of employees within companies prefer to select their workplace meals themselves when their employer provides food. This underscores the importance of catering menus that are designed to meet individual needs and preferences. Tacombi, renowned for its fast-casual Mexican fare, recognized this demand and partnered with Lunchbox to revolutionize their catering service. Their innovative approach to menu design showcases how tailoring offerings can drive remarkable sales growth and customer satisfaction.

In addition, ezCater revealed that 64% of employees surveyed said they prefer individually packaged meals over tray catering. Tacombi's "make your own taco experience" Taquiza menu, designed for groups of 10 to 60, and the "Suprema Sets" feature individually wrapped items, exemplifying their commitment to versatility and quality. With options like quesadillas, burritos, or tacos, Tacombi's catering menu caters to diverse preferences while ensuring convenience for companies and their employees. This strategic approach has yielded impressive results, with Tacombi experiencing a more than 50% increase in catering sales within the first 8 months of partnering with Lunchbox. Moreover, the brand is on track to generate over $1 million in sales in its first year, with check averages reaching $640 and beyond.

Review the strategies and technology Tacombi implemented to grow its catering business.

Streamline Kitchen Operations

Fulfilling large catering orders can add exceeding pressure on kitchen staff and resources, especially during peak hours. However, savvy restaurants leverage off-peak hours to their advantage, utilizing mornings before the lunch rush to prep and pack catering orders efficiently. This strategic approach not only minimizes additional labor costs during peak periods like a lunch rush but also ensures timely and seamless execution of orders. Lunchbox's prep sheets feature serves as a game-changer in streamlining these operations. By generating detailed prep sheets for each order, this tool guides kitchen staff through every step of the preparation process, eliminating guesswork and minimizing errors.

With meticulous instructions covering everything from ingredients to associated packaging, catering managers can rest assured that nothing is overlooked or wasted. By harnessing Lunchbox's prep sheets, restaurants can optimize resource utilization, enhance kitchen efficiency, and ultimately drive profitability and success in their catering business. This commitment to precision and streamlined operations not only enhances customer satisfaction but also positions restaurants for long-term growth and sustainability.

Identify Growth Opportunities

Tracking performance metrics and analyzing trends is essential for informed decision-making. Lunchbox's reporting dashboard provides catering managers with comprehensive insights into sales data, order volumes, and customer preferences. With customizable reporting options and intuitive visualizations, this feature empowers businesses to identify opportunities for growth and fine-tune their catering strategies accordingly.

Moreover, Lunchbox's integrated Marketing CRM enables restaurants to take their growth initiatives to the next level. Leveraging over 50+ customer data points, restaurants can build automated email and SMS workflows tailored to catering customers, nurturing relationships, and driving repeat business to grow customer lifetime value (LTV). Additionally, restaurants can strategically advertise their catering services to app, web, and loyalty customers, converting them into catering clients.

A case study with Bareburger illustrates this approach in action. Bareburger prominently displays its catering services on its website homepage, ensuring easy access for customers. By prioritizing direct ordering and clearly communicating the various ways customers can enjoy their food, Bareburger effectively drove conversions and boosted its catering sales by 24% MoM on average, leveraging innovative tech and marketing strategies. This strategic focus on marketing and web presence enhances brand visibility and maximizes revenue-generating opportunities.

Learn how Bareburger achieved catering success—access the case study now!

Wrapping Up

In conclusion, the catering landscape presents both challenges and opportunities for restaurants seeking to expand their revenue streams. Through strategic utilization of advanced technology, such as Lunchbox's Catering Calendar and Marketing CRM, coupled with tailored menu design and effective marketing strategies, restaurants can streamline operations. This enhances customer satisfaction and drives significant growth in their catering sales. As evident through real-life success stories such as Tacombi and Bareburger, the path to unlocking untapped revenue lies in embracing innovation and leveraging data-driven insights to meet the evolving needs of customers. With the right tools and strategies in place, restaurants can position themselves for long-term success in the competitive catering market. 

Explore the full potential of catering order management with Lunchbox Catering today and embark on a journey toward unprecedented growth and profitability.

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