$19.6B spent on food for meetings. That’s a lot of receipts…

Businesses spend $19.6 Billion on food for meetings - Concur and ezCater are helping them organize it.

The three-martini lunch was a staple of business culture decades ago. Even after business became less like a scene from Mad Men and more like today, salespeople would take their customers and prospects out to lunch on a regular basis. Now, with schedules full of overlapping meetings, it’s less common for people to have the time. The new normal is to bring lunch into the office for meetings. Less time is wasted in getting to and from a restaurant and a greater number of team members can participate. Providing the food for the meeting is the new quid pro quo that earns salespeople the time and attention of their customers and prospects. The innovation economy and the rise of millennial culture has led to an explosion in the number of businesses that provide food for their employees on a regular basis. In some industries, especially technology, millennial’s expect to have their lunch provided. It’s becoming increasingly rare to work in a business that does not at least occasionally provide some meals. These and other social trends in the workplace have driven an increase in the amount of drop-off catering to businesses. Technomic, a leading industry analyst firm, estimates that U.S. businesses spend $19.6 Billion per year on food delivered to their offices and customer sites for meetings, trainings, and events. This figure is up from the prior $16 Billion and is expected to keep rising.  

Overcoming an expense and logistics nightmare

$19.6 Billion is a lot of meals and snacks. The increase of business catering in the last few years has turned salespeople, admins, and office managers who are organizing these events into food-ordering machines. For many of them, it’s a logistics nightmare – from making dozens of phone calls to restaurants to arranging delivery. And then, documenting expenses with spaghetti-stained receipts. Increasingly, business people are turning to technology to help them streamline the process and allow them to focus on their jobs. ezCater and Concur are helping them do just that. ezCater, now a Concur App Center partner, provides the only nationwide online marketplace to connect businesses to reliable local caterers anywhere in the United States. Whether providing food for a team meeting at the office or for a sales call at a customer site in another city business people are using ezCater to:

  • Find just the right caterer for their event
  • Order online, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for same-day delivery or up to a year in advance
  • Organize for anywhere from 2-2000 people
  • And provide almost 300,000 ratings and reviews along the way

Once an order is processed, an e-receipt is automatically sent to the user’s Concur account. Consolidating receipts in Concur makes it easy for users to not only manage their spend but also submit accurate expense reports.. ezCater is particularly useful when traveling, with a network of more than 43,000 caterers available across the U.S. If you have unique needs and can’t find what you need online, ezCater’s 5-star-rated customer service can usually arrange a solution. Whether catering is booked online or via an ezCater representative, the service is free and the price for the food and delivery is the same as ordering directly with the caterer. With ezCater and Concur, businesspeople can streamline their catering needs and effortlessly manage their expenses. Learn more and connect your Concur account today in the Concur App Center. To learn more about ezCater and explore their caterer network, visit the ezCater website.

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