Those who have set up catering businesses quickly realize that costs can get out of control. To maximize a catering operations profit, not only do you have to try to increase the revenue coming in to your business but you also have to try to limit your expenses. This article looks at some of the ways that you can increase productivity and run a more economical business.Firstly, you could look at sharing a commercial kitchen with other caterers or companies in the food preparation business. If you are only catering seven or eight events a month it doesn’t make sense to rent a commercial kitchen entirely free your companies use. Sharing kitchen space and cooperating with others by efficiently scheduling your time is the way to go.In the early days of your business it can be dangerous to waste all of your capital on expensive equipment. Play it safe here and rent or lease equipment as you need it or look at buying some quality second hand equipment.Be organized at all times. By efficiently scheduling your time and the time of your staff you can make the most of the human resources that you have available. There are so many things that have to come together if you are to pull off a successful event and having things done properly, at the right time and the first time around can save you time and resources in the long run. Make good use of checklists to make sure that nothing is forgotten and that every staff member knows their responsibilities.Plan your menus carefully to minimize waste. If you do have left over produce, look at ways to incorporate it into the menus of upcoming events (soups are a good way to use left over food).Always be on the lookout for ingredients that allow you to save money. Sometimes you can substitute expensive ingredients with cheaper ones and not really change the overall taste of the dish in question.Always shop around various suppliers to make sure that you are still getting the best price on your food and beverage supplies. Compare notes with other caterers and possibly even look at ordering food together in bulk to get even cheaper prices.Learn about kitchen management and efficiency. Take some time to stand back and think about what you and your staff are doing and if you are doing it the best way. Little improvements in the way you go about doing things can save a considerable amount of time in the long-term.When you are setting up and running your catering business you should be focusing 80% of your thoughts on increasing revenue. But don’t neglect to spend 20% of the time that you spend analyzing your cash flows to focus on productivity and cost savings.