Office orders mean big business for mobile food delivery apps. GrubHub and Seamless have developed strong integrations with corporate accounting systems, and smaller startups like Caviar and Ritual have launched group ordering tools designed for the needs of office workers. But the team at delivery.com believes there are still holes in the market waiting to be filled, and placing food orders for multiple people is more challenging than it needs to be.
“We’ve identified significant demand for office ordering solutions that aren’t available,” says delivery.com CEO Jed Kleckner. “Many of the products offered address the ordering needs of large enterprises, which have distinctly different demands than smaller companies.”
With 99% of U.S. companies employing fewer than 500 people, Kleckner says there are many smaller businesses out there with unmet needs. Delivery.com’s attempt to meet those needs is debuting this morning, as the company adds new group ordering functionality to its platform.
The group ordering feature includes tools that permit individuals to select what they want, rather than relying on a single group organizer to enter everyone’s choices.
“Office administrators expect to have their many food ordering needs met, without sacrificing on time or food quality,” Kleckner says. “They also want the same variety they’ve come to expect as an individual consumer, but in an office setting—and without paying additional fees.”
With delivery.com’s new features, group organizers are able to initiate orders on the delivery.com website, create custom settings, and invite others to join their orders by sharing a URL. With custom settings, group organizers can set ordering deadlines and individual spend limits, both of which are useful in the office setting.
Another useful feature for office workers involves payments. In addition to all the standard forms of payment, group organizers can pay with pre-paid corporate credits and digital wallet providers. They can also divide the cost of orders among other participants in the group.
Although his team didn’t set out to design an ordering tool for groups of families and friends, Kleckner says the final product is something he expects to appeal to those groups.
“We’ve created it in a way that casual groups—like families or roommates—can take advantage of it as well,” he says.
Today’s launch is meant to build on the success of delivery.com Office, an ordering platform targeted at office clients that the company quietly rolled out last year. In the process of building Office, Kleckner and his team spoke to corporate customers to learn how their needs were and weren’t being addressed by existing products.
Although Kleckner believes that mobile ordering tools are at the point where basic office ordering needs are mostly being met—for example, pre-paid corporate credits are widely available, and delivery.com already offers catering and curated merchant recommendations tailored to individual client preferences—he still believes that there is much more to come as companies like his own reach deeper into the corporate market.
Kleckner also sees a continued push into social ordering and a shift toward consumerization of the enterprise.
“People want a sense of collaboration in their technology and expect access to an intuitive experience—anytime, anywhere. Social commerce, such as the buying capabilities that now exist on Facebook and Instagram, and communication channels like Slack and Yammer, have led to assumptions on the part of the consumer and corporate customer that they can order with social input, in a way that’s still totally frictionless,” Kleckner says.
“That assumption extends to food purchases. Group ordering provides a platform for groups at the consumer or corporate level to interact with an ordering platform infused with the sense of community they’ve come to expect.”
Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.