Over the last decade catering has become one of the fastest-growing industries. This seems to be partly as a result of popular television series such as Masterchef and the Great British Bake Off and partly due to an increase in the number of organisations employing outside catering companies to prepare food for events.
Running a catering company is hard work and requires a strong personality as well as the obvious flair for cooking. However, if long hours and working closely with clients appeals, this could be the perfect business start up for you. You should ensure that you have all of the administrative aspects of running a business covered such as appointing an Accountants Cheltenham way to help with your business finances. randall and payne are accountants in cheltenham that can help with
Running a catering company means long hours and, depending upon the type of events you decide to service, you may be up at the crack of dawn and working late into the night. During peak seasons, this could be six or even seven days a week.
The average evening event would typically require an 8.00am start. Alongside food preparation, you will be organising stock, sorting out equipment, accepting deliveries, keeping up with emails and phone calls and undertaking marketing tasks, including maintaining a social media presence. Event start times will vary, but preparation on site will usually begin around 5.00pm for a 7.00pm or 8.00pm event. Once everything is in hand and the event under way, it will be important to ensure you make a good impression as the face of your company. Events are a great place to meet potential new clients. The clean-up afterwards is as important as preparing and serving amazing food. Leave a fantastic impression and your business will benefit from word-of-mouth recommendations.
Morning or all-day events will obviously run to a different time scale.
Before deciding on a location for your catering company, or the type of events you will service, carry out some market research. Look around at other local companies offering a similar service to decide if there is room in the market for your business too or whether you need to consider moving location or changing your speciality.
Running a catering company doesn’t necessarily mean immediately having to hire premises to work in. Your own kitchen should suffice at first. However, it may be necessary to invest in some commercial grade equipment as your business starts to grow.
Once business starts to increase, it may become necessary to move to a professional kitchen.
It is not necessarily important to have lots of qualifications in order to start up a catering company. However, running a business can be complicated, so enlisting the help and advice of accountants and other business experts is a good idea. Lots of information can be found online. You will, of course, be required by law to have food hygiene and health and safety training and comply with food hygiene regulations.
When you first start, it may be possible to run your catering business with minimal staff. However, once things get busier, it will be important to have a team of reliable employees. Hiring staff on a full-time basis will probably not be the most cost-effective solution. Instead, look into more temporary options, such as contracting from staffing agencies or using self-employed personnel.