Maybe there is such a thing as a free lunch. The best NYC offices are increasingly using corporate catering services on a regular basis, instead of for special occasions only. A 2018 survey of the International Caterers Association revealed over 54 percent of catering professionals believe corporate catering will be their most in-demand and highest-growth service in 2018.

Organizations in New York who make the switch to on-site catering can realize a host of business benefits. “Offering free meals and caffeine is actually a highly effective — and cost-effective — means of motivating… employees,” writes executive editor of strategy + business Daniel Gross. “Companies realize significant returns on these investments.” Well-fed employees are more productive, engaged and feel more appreciated by their employer.

4 Surprising Benefits of NYC Office Catering


There’s plenty of coverage of major brands with over-the-top employee perks. Some of the most extravagant employee offerings include the on-site spa and dentist offered by one biotech firm, free vacations offered by one travel company, or the high-tech company who pays for interns’ housing. However, these high-cost perks may not have the same impact as catering. “In the rush to create inviting workspaces, many companies have overlooked a staple of human happiness: food,” writes Churig Kulkarni in Inc.

For some NYC companies, the time savings on employees who no longer need to leave the office for coffee, snacks or lunch can pay for the cost of catering. Beyond enhanced productivity, there are many of benefits of NYC office catering which can enhance the entire organization.

1. Stronger Company Culture

Sharing food is an important part of the human experience. There’s evidence that organizations with office catering have an edge on their competitors when it comes to building a healthy corporate culture of fun. With catering, “teams will become stronger – more cohesive units committed to pursuing shared outcomes and goals,” writes Psychologist Dr. Nick Hobson. “We could hypothesize that teams who eat together outcompete and outperform.”

Not only can catering support culture-building efforts, the types of catering organizations choose can communicate company values. Sustainable, local or healthy foods are all ways organizations can reinforce their brand. In other cases, opting for award-winning chefs and high-quality beverages like cold brew coffee can communicate to employees that you care.

At LinkedIn, employees are treated to fridges stocked with coconut water and meals cooked by an award-winning chef.

2. Improved Wellness

Providing healthy foods at the workplace can encourage employees to adopt healthy habits. Investments in wellness can pay dividends in employee attendance and health. One Harvard study demonstrated an average of 327 percent ROI on corporate wellness programs, with medical costs falling $3.27 for each $1.00 invested in healthy food, movement and education.

Healthy eating can also have an immediate impact on productivity and performance. One major study found that healthy foods at the workplace contributed to 25 percent higher job performance among 20,000 workers. In contrast, research has demonstrated that talent who eat unhealthily are 66 percent less productive.

3. Better Interpersonal Relationships

NYC office catering can transform the break room into a gathering place for employees to share meals and build interpersonal relationships. Instead of leaving the office for lunch, employees are encouraged to stick around and form personal connections with their colleagues.

These interpersonal relationships are likely to have a direct impact on both individual and team performance. A Google People Ops study found that the single most important factor in effective team building is “foster[ing] psychological safety.” Employees who feel safe and valued by their coworkers are more likely to take creative risks and make professional moves that could create “vulnerability” in front of coworkers.

4. Talent Recruitment and Retention

The talent market in NYC and other areas nationwide is notoriously tight, especially for highly sought-after professionals with technical skills. The realities of recruitment and retention have become so intense for many organizations that CEBGlobal encourages organizations to think of “HR as PR.” When it comes to building a professional brand that attracts and retains the right talent, NYC office catering could create an important edge.

According to a Population Health Management study, 57 percent of employees say food-based perks would make them feel more valued and appreciated at work. Snacks, coffee, and catering have also made the list of most desirable employee benefits, according to Harvard Business Review.

Investing in NYC Office Catering Could Pay Dividends


Making the switch to offer catering service on a daily, weekly, or frequent basis is more than just a free lunch. It’s a strategic business decision which is likely to pay dividends in a culture of fun, employee wellness, interpersonal relationships and talent retention. All of these benefits have a direct impact on talent happiness on a day-to-day basis and performance, which is likely to create a better bottom line.

Corporate Essentials is the leading provider of innovative, full-service office catering solutions in NYC, New York and New Jersey. As a leading, local office refreshment provider for over two decades, we’re experts at helping NYC organizations create a competitive edge with the right food service options. Our staff of catering experts includes award-winning chefs and a registered dietitian, as well as full support for equipment and related needs.

Lori Puri

About Lori Puri

Lori’s strong love of people and the diversity each individual brings to the table first struck her interest in marketing. After completing her MBA with concentrations in Marketing and Entrepreneurship from Syracuse University, Lori has spent time building and growing brands. As Corporate Essentials’ Marketing Manager, Lori hopes to bring the company’s unique “Fuel Culture. Work Happy.” philosophy to the working world, and help companies attract and retain a passionate, balanced workforce.