Opening multiple catering locations is an exciting endeavor and signifies growth and high demand for your services. Having several locations allows you to reach new markets and serve a more extensive customer base, resulting in a stronger brand presence in the industry.
As with many business decisions, more business locales opens up both opportunities and obstacles. The new prospects can elevate your company to the next level revenue-wise, but not without additional challenges. Expanding your business is not a decision to be taken lightly.
Let’s explore some considerations when deciding whether to take the plunge.
Start with research
Expanding your company without doing proper research can be a costly mistake. You first need to focus on understanding the region of the proposed location. Tap into the consumer market and get a feel for what the other businesses in the area are doing to reach customers. Consider language barriers or the possibility that different areas have different price expectations. Look also at logistics, like parking, ease of transportation, neighborhood safety, and other potential deal breakers.
You’ll then need to dig into the internal side of expansion. How much will this ultimately cost? Are you solvent enough to manage double the rent, salaries, and inventory? Do you have the time to hire and train a whole new team? You need to understand the price that comes with growth and be sure that you can take on the expense comfortably, without sacrificing your existing business.
Prepare your team
When you have more than one location, you’ll have to divide your time between both places. In your absence, you must trust each team to handle daily responsibilities without your whether or not you are physically in the facility.
During the hiring process, seek out independent workers who are likely to be able to replicate your original model. Don’t rush the hiring process. You need to take the time to find the right candidates since you’re investing a lot of capital in the expansion. Do it the right way.
Expect unforeseen obstacles
If this is your first time expanding, you will likely run into new challenges that you never considered at a single location. For example, we faced the issue of inventory storage. We had to learn how to anticipate demand to ensure that each site had the right pieces. We came up with a delivery option that made more sense than purchasing and storing double the inventory.
Your challenges will vary depending on your business. Perhaps a new catering kitchen will reveal a hitch in ingredient consistency or availability. Whatever it may be, go into the process prepared to tackle whatever comes your way. Don’t give up; you’re committed to the expansion, so work your way through each hurdle with grace.
Use technology to your advantage
Digital tools are vital to running a cohesive and solvent business from multiple locations. Strong communication is essential, so you need to have a channel to reach the other office easily. A collaborative program for project management or asset management is also beneficial. You can also leverage technology to streamline meetings and staff training, which saves you the time of running from place to place.
Despite the challenges of juggling multiple locations, making a move can unleash your business potential and open you up to new opportunities for growth. Just be sure that you have done your research and are well prepared for every step of the journey!
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