If there was ever a year that needed some extra cheer, 2020 is it.
With the holiday season upon us, there’s still a lot of uncertainty about what it will look like this year. For many, the holidays will be very different, and possibly a little bit sad. While many people have transitioned to remote work, others don’t have that option. Keeping the tradition of the holiday office meal alive as a year-end celebration is a small way to give back to your employees who need to be in the office for logistical reasons or because they are considered essential personnel.
And what better way to show your gratitude than a catered meal with all the season’s tastiest and most festive treats?
Of course, since we are still in COVID times, things will look a little different than the usual holiday party. All the appropriate precautions still need to be in place, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time. You just need to plan a COVID-smart office holiday event, which isn’t as hard as you might think.
6 Tips for a Covid-smart Holiday Office Celebration
Holiday catering during COVID is a breeze with help from ezCater. Like you, restaurants have adapted to 2020’s new normal. From contactless delivery to individually packaged meals, our catering partners offer a wide variety of options and services to ensure customer safety and satisfaction.
To help you plan your workplace event, here are a few tips about how to safely put on a holiday meal for your employees.
Limit the Guest List
Sadly, while it would be nice to invite everyone, we can’t recommend expanding your guest list to include off-site employees, employee family members, or business partners. The number one rule of any 2020 holiday gathering is to keep it intimate. And that’s okay.
Pro Tip: If you have a partner team that you wish you could invite but can’t, consider sending them a catered meal to enjoy at their offices and “join them” over Zoom to raise a toast.
Optimize Party Flow
Even as the eggnog starts to flow, it’s important to maintain social distancing. To create extra space, try spreading the party out. Instead of concentrating all the food and drink in one area, set up different food stations throughout your office. This is a great way to encourage people to keep moving so they don’t all congregate in one area.
Another way to make sure your holiday party doesn’t get too crowded is to set up party “shifts.” Who says everyone has to celebrate at the same time? If yours is a large organization, maybe you make the party last longer by having different teams celebrate at different times of the day (breakfast can be a great time for holiday cheer) or even different days of the week.
Stay on Top of Disinfection
Just like washing our hands, keeping surfaces clean and disinfected is another way to stay COVID-smart. In addition to encouraging frequent hand washing and mask wearing, have hand sanitizer available near all food serving areas. It’s also a good idea to use disinfecting wipes liberally, especially in places where people are serving food. Finally, single-use choices like individually wrapped utensils and napkins are another effective way to minimize risks in group settings.
Customize Your Delivery
The holidays may look different this year, but we bet you still have a few mouths to feed! Our catering menu has your pasta faves, pizza, salad, desserts & breadsticks for the perfect seasonal spread. Head to the site to find available options near you & have a no-hassle holiday! pic.twitter.com/L9Uo73O8Ee— Fazoli's (@Fazolis) November 25, 2020
Our restaurant partners have become experts at safe, customized, on-time delivery. If you have set aside a space in your office to receive them, you can request contactless delivery. You can also make any other special requests that suit your needs including specific drop-off locations, elevator instructions, etc.
If you opt for tray catering, you may want to assign one person – wearing a mask and gloves – to serve each tray/food item rather than having each employee serve themselves. This will minimize the number of people touching utensils and help to limit time spent lingering around the food stations.
Consider Individual Meals
Depending on your budget and the number of people in your workplace, you might opt for individually packaged meals instead of traditional tray service. Individual meals are an excellent solution that helps limit the flow of people in a small area while simultaneously offering employees a fully personalized meal option. Many of our caterers have added individually packaged holiday meal options to their menus.
And for dessert? We may be a bit biased here, but cupcakes are the original individually packaged treat!
May Your Office Holiday Party Be Merry and Bright
This year, employee appreciation and recognition is more important than ever. Your teams have gone above and beyond to keep your business going during these unprecedented and deeply uncertain times. They deserve a little something extra for their valiant efforts.
“If your team is in the office during the holidays this year, they need a festive moment.” says Diane Swint, Head of Marketplace at ezCater. “Get creative with your outdoor space, bring in some lights and individually packaged holiday meals and you can make the mood merry.”
We’d love to help you bring some joy to the office this holiday season. With over 75,000 restaurants to choose from, we’re sure you’ll find one that’s perfect for your team. Getting started is easy at ezCater.com.