This catering business helps companies build culture through great food.


ZeroCater serves better meals with a side of Salesforce.

ZeroCater is built on a simple but powerful message: Great food brings people together. A family-style catering service that provides meals to offices in cities around the U.S., ZeroCater has grown to a team of more than 250 full-time employees across six major U.S. hubs. As the company has grown, this startup’s use of the Salesforce Platform has scaled along with it every step of the way.

Born from a carefully curated list of Bay Area restaurants, ZeroCater is changing the way companies eat. “We believe there’s no better way for a company to build culture than over a shared meal,” Ali Sabeti, CEO, said. Since 2009, ZeroCater has been connecting local business clients with local restaurant vendors, helping companies of all sizes use good food to recruit employees and build culture, while helping restaurants scale their own businesses at the same time.

ZeroCater is a Trailblazer in office catering.


Prior to using Salesforce, ZeroCater managed its sales process in spreadsheets. But maintaining a standardized sales process while growing so much, so quickly, demanded something more from a business technology solution.

“When you only have a few sales reps, you can use Excel to find contacts and track sales meetings,” Sabeti said. “The moment your sales team grows, following the sales process becomes much more time intensive.”

Enter Salesforce. Getting all of ZeroCater’s sales reps working in Sales Cloud established Salesforce as the company’s single record of data. With its data and sales activities centralized, ZeroCater was able to standardize its sales process to quickly ramp up new sales reps. “The on-ramping process for new sales reps was halved from four weeks to two weeks using Salesforce,” Sabeti said. That proved to be a huge time and resource saver as ZeroCater grew across six markets spread across the country.


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The Platform that Scales With Your Company and Customers

New businesses need customers to survive and grow, so it’s no surprise that ZeroCater’s Salesforce journey began with Sales Cloud. The company has been focused from the start on offering great customer service, and Service Cloud let it take full advantage of the Salesforce Platform to offer the best customer experience possible. “As we grew and we scaled, we added more Salesforce functionality. Then we decided to step back and think holistically about how we’re using the platform as a whole,” Sabeti said.

That holistic approach quickly focused on building new products and functions around the customer, and how the entire Salesforce Platform — from Sales Cloud and Pardot to Service Cloud and Heroku — could work together to support those efforts. As Sabeti put it, “It's about keeping the customer in the middle, and connecting all of the functions of the company around that customer.”

The proof is in the (catered) pudding

With Pardot, Sales Cloud, and Service Cloud, the ZeroCater team has the tools they need to scale the company’s catering business. The marketing team now builds automated email campaigns to nurture leads, and company leadership cited a 79% efficiency increase in executing email campaigns on Pardot.

Sales has also seen amazing results from centralizing their data and standardizing their process across the company’s hubs. Close rate is up 40%, and productivity is up 25% since the move to Salesforce. Plus, with the Salesforce mobile app, ZeroCater reps are logging more client meetings. “Our reps using the Salesforce mobile app are 40% more likely to log activities when they are onsite for a client meeting,” Sabeti said.


CRM is the lifeblood of our business. I always say if it's not in Salesforce, it didn't happen.”

Joanel Bernardo | Director of Customer Success

From meals to snacks and beyond: ZeroCater continues to expand

After more than a decade of helping businesses build community around meals, ZeroCater is going strong, continuing to expand its services and relationships with businesses around the U.S. ZeroCater also closed an additional financing round in 2018 to fuel expansion into a new market: snacks.

As the office food space matures, and more companies look to offer catered meals to their employees, ZeroCater is staying a step ahead of the market. “The vision of ZeroCater for the next 10 years or so is built around understanding why our customers like the food they like, and taking that intelligence to offer them new foods that they might not have thought of before," Sabati said.

Whether it’s full catered lunches or pantries stocked with snacks, ZeroCater knows how to help businesses bring people together around good food. The only thing better might be helping those people discover their new favorite dishes and snacks in the process.


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