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A Meeting Planners Guide to Catered Events Chapter Ten Contracts and Negotiations.

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Presentation on theme: "A Meeting Planners Guide to Catered Events Chapter Ten Contracts and Negotiations."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Meeting Planners Guide to Catered Events Chapter Ten Contracts and Negotiations

2 Caterers typically require meeting planners to sign formal catering contracts before events are scheduled to take place. Caterers typically require meeting planners to sign formal catering contracts before events are scheduled to take place. Sometimes a caterer will forgo the use of formal contracts and instead rely on signed banquet event orders (BEOs) or signed letters of agreement. Sometimes a caterer will forgo the use of formal contracts and instead rely on signed banquet event orders (BEOs) or signed letters of agreement. These documents may be every bit as legally enforceable as formal contracts; however, they do not use the typical boilerplate legalese These documents may be every bit as legally enforceable as formal contracts; however, they do not use the typical boilerplate legalese

3 More caterers are using letters of agreement as opposed to contracts. More caterers are using letters of agreement as opposed to contracts. They serve the same purpose. They serve the same purpose. Signing an agreement is less threatening to most people than signing a contract. Signing an agreement is less threatening to most people than signing a contract. The word agreement is friendlier, not quite as cold. The word agreement is friendlier, not quite as cold.

4 Never book and confirm a catered event without a signed agreement. Never book and confirm a catered event without a signed agreement. Usually an unwritten contract cannot be legally enforced in a court of law unless you are dealing with an agreement worth $500 or less. Usually an unwritten contract cannot be legally enforced in a court of law unless you are dealing with an agreement worth $500 or less. Even with small parties, it is good business practice to detail in writing both your and the caterers responsibilities and obligations. Even with small parties, it is good business practice to detail in writing both your and the caterers responsibilities and obligations.

5 Banquet Event Order The banquet event order (BEO), also called the function sheet, is the basis of the property's internal communication system between departments. The banquet event order (BEO), also called the function sheet, is the basis of the property's internal communication system between departments. It is the basic building block upon which the caterer's accounting and record- keeping systems are constructed. It is the basic building block upon which the caterer's accounting and record- keeping systems are constructed. A BEO is prepared for each meal and beverage function, and copies are sent to the departments that will be directly or indirectly involved with the events. A BEO is prepared for each meal and beverage function, and copies are sent to the departments that will be directly or indirectly involved with the events.

6 BEO Usually all departments receive a copy of each BEO a week or more before the catered function is held. Usually all departments receive a copy of each BEO a week or more before the catered function is held. This ensures that all department heads have enough time to schedule and complete the activities that support the events. This ensures that all department heads have enough time to schedule and complete the activities that support the events.

7 The typical BEO contains: BEO number BEO number Function day(s) and date(s) Function day(s) and date(s) Type of function Type of function Client name with signature line Client name with signature line Client address Client address Client contact person, or person in charge Client contact person, or person in charge Person who booked the event and authorized signature(s) Person who booked the event and authorized signature(s) Name of function room Name of function room

8 BEO Contents (cont) Beginning time of function Beginning time of function Expected ending time of function Expected ending time of function Number of attendees expected Number of attendees expected Number of attendees to prepare for Number of attendees to prepare for Menus Menus Style of service Style of service Function room setup Function room setup

9 BEO Contents (cont) Reference to other BEOs or other relevant records Reference to other BEOs or other relevant records Date BEO was completed Date BEO was completed Signature of person preparing (or approving) the BEO Signature of person preparing (or approving) the BEO List of departments receiving a copy of the BEO List of departments receiving a copy of the BEO

10 BEO Contents (cont) Special instructions (such as centerpieces, set-by times, parking details, miscellaneous labor charges, sleeping-room blocks, napery, tablescapes, bar arrangements, props, entertainment, electrical/engineering needs, unique underliners, VIPs, and other special amenities) Special instructions (such as centerpieces, set-by times, parking details, miscellaneous labor charges, sleeping-room blocks, napery, tablescapes, bar arrangements, props, entertainment, electrical/engineering needs, unique underliners, VIPs, and other special amenities) Prices charged Prices charged Master billing account number Master billing account number Billing instructions Billing instructions

11 Resume A resume (also called a convention resume or meeting resume) is a summary of function room uses for a particular convention or meeting. A resume (also called a convention resume or meeting resume) is a summary of function room uses for a particular convention or meeting. Normally it is used whenever a meeting planner books two or more catered events to be held consecutively. Normally it is used whenever a meeting planner books two or more catered events to be held consecutively. The resume usually includes all BEOs. The resume usually includes all BEOs.

12 Resume The resume may more appropriately be referred to as the function room resume as this report details function room use for a particular client. The resume may more appropriately be referred to as the function room resume as this report details function room use for a particular client. It focuses on the major highlights while deferring to the pertinent BEOs for specific details. It focuses on the major highlights while deferring to the pertinent BEOs for specific details.

13 Resume If you book a one-week convention, and there are 15 meal, beverage, and business-meeting functions, the resume will highlight each function, when the function rooms will be booked, and when they will be dark. If you book a one-week convention, and there are 15 meal, beverage, and business-meeting functions, the resume will highlight each function, when the function rooms will be booked, and when they will be dark.

14 Resumes Include: Function day(s) and date(s) Function day(s) and date(s) Types of functions Types of functions Client name Client name Client contact information (address, e- mail address, and cell phone number) Client contact information (address, e- mail address, and cell phone number) Client contact person, or person in charge Client contact person, or person in charge Person who booked the events along with authorized signature(s) Person who booked the events along with authorized signature(s)

15 Resumes Include: (cont) Beginning times of functions Beginning times of functions Expected ending times of functions Expected ending times of functions Number of attendees expected Number of attendees expected Furniture and equipment needs Furniture and equipment needs Function room names Function room names Room setups Room setups Special instructions Special instructions

16 Resumes Include: (cont) Date resume was completed Date resume was completed Signature of person preparing (or approving) the resume Signature of person preparing (or approving) the resume List of departments receiving a copy of the resume List of departments receiving a copy of the resume

17 Resumes Include: (cont) Room charges Room charges Labor charges Labor charges Equipment charges Equipment charges Master billing account number Master billing account number Billing instructions Billing instructions Reference to other relevant records Reference to other relevant records

18 Contract Contract date Contract date Function day(s) and dates Function day(s) and dates Function time(s) Function time(s) Appropriate client and facility signatures Appropriate client and facility signatures Function room(s) tentatively assigned Function room(s) tentatively assigned Menus Menus Style(s) of service Style(s) of service Function room setup(s) Function room setup(s)

19 Contract Other client service(s) Other client service(s) Deposit(s) Deposit(s) Breakage Breakage Head-count guarantee(s) Head-count guarantee(s) Overset Overset Attrition Attrition Refunds, returns, and allowances Refunds, returns, and allowances Outside food and beverage Outside food and beverage

20 Contract Taxes Taxes Gratuities Gratuities Tips Tips Service charge(s) Service charge(s) Cancellation penalty Cancellation penalty Room setup charge(s) Room setup charge(s) Room rental rate(s) Room rental rate(s) Setup service charge(s) Setup service charge(s)

21 Contract Display restriction(s) Display restriction(s) Responsibility for loss and/or damage Responsibility for loss and/or damage Underage or visibly intoxicated guests Underage or visibly intoxicated guests Indemnification Indemnification Security Security License(s) and permit(s) License(s) and permit(s) Price quotation(s) Price quotation(s) Uncontrollable acts Uncontrollable acts

22 Contract Substitutions Substitutions Change order(s) Change order(s) Service ratios Service ratios Other extra charge(s) Other extra charge(s) Billing procedures Billing procedures Collection procedures Collection procedures

23 Guarantee You will have to provide a head- count guarantee and/or dollar amount guarantee. You will have to provide a head- count guarantee and/or dollar amount guarantee. At the time specified by the agreement, the meeting planner must finalize the count of attendees. At the time specified by the agreement, the meeting planner must finalize the count of attendees. A guarantee deposit is normally paid at this time. A guarantee deposit is normally paid at this time.

24 Guarantee A guarantee provides the information that will drive food production, staffing, and sales revenue. A guarantee provides the information that will drive food production, staffing, and sales revenue. With a guarantee, the caterer is assured of receiving payment based on either the guarantee or the number of attendees served (whichever is larger). With a guarantee, the caterer is assured of receiving payment based on either the guarantee or the number of attendees served (whichever is larger). Without a guarantee, the caterer doesnt know how much food and beverage to order and how much labor to call in. Without a guarantee, the caterer doesnt know how much food and beverage to order and how much labor to call in.

25 Guarantee Guarantees are generally required 48 hours in advance of the event. Guarantees are generally required 48 hours in advance of the event. Sometimes a 72-hour advance notice is required if the event is held over a weekend or in a location that doesnt receive daily deliveries. Sometimes a 72-hour advance notice is required if the event is held over a weekend or in a location that doesnt receive daily deliveries. Sometimes a caterer will take a minimum guarantee 48 hours in advance, and the meeting planner can add to that number up until 24 hours prior to the event. Sometimes a caterer will take a minimum guarantee 48 hours in advance, and the meeting planner can add to that number up until 24 hours prior to the event.

26 Guarantee Caterers must charge for the guaranteed number of attendees regardless of how many attendees show up. Caterers must charge for the guaranteed number of attendees regardless of how many attendees show up. They still have labor, food, and beverage costs, but no compensation for them if the number falls below the guaranteed count and they did not charge for the guaranteed number. They still have labor, food, and beverage costs, but no compensation for them if the number falls below the guaranteed count and they did not charge for the guaranteed number.


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