When looking for a suitable event management app, there are two popular solutions you might compare: Caterease vs Gather. Both offer all-in-one management software that helps you schedule and oversee events, venues, catering, and customers.
At the same time, both platforms are unique and have specific features and functions to offer. In this guide, we'll compare the apps and share insights into which might be best suited to your business.
Caterease is an event planning and catering management platform. The software offers tools to streamline business operations and improve the way event managers and caterers work across the event timeline. Its core features include event booking forms, automatic reminders, comprehensive checklists, packing slips, and venue lists.
Event professionals working in several roles across various industries use Caterease. But, despite being a feature-packed software solution, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. The platform’s user experience feels slightly dated and lacks the modern interface some of its competitors offer. It’s also not the most affordable solution on the market.
Who is Caterease Suited to?
As the name suggests, Caterease is, first and foremost, designed to be catering software. This is where its roots are. As a result, many processes focus on catering-specific functions like scalable recipes, catering packing lists, and catering event prints.
However, Caterease can be a useful event management software solution for all sorts of venues. Restaurants, banquet halls, schools and colleges, country clubs, and hotels also regularly use it.
Caterease offers various tools to help manage the entire event timeline. Here are some of the main features the platform has to offer:
Event Booking Forms
Automated forms capture event booking details and collect the client information you require upfront. This helps lower instances of missing data and save time when compiling important documents.
Although the booking forms are customizable, modifying them requires a bit of effort. They can also be somewhat restrictive if you need to insert fields over and above what’s been built into the wizard.
Caterease has a built-in customer relationship management (CRM) tool. Using it, you can review client history, track correspondence, and get information to develop leads for your business.
Caterease’s recipe tools provide helpful restaurant menu planning functionality for restaurants and catering companies. You can use Caterease to develop scalable recipes and sub-recipes, making it easier to perform accurate costing for events and ensure you order correctly.
With Caterease, you can automate inventory tracking reminders, packing lists, and reminders for upcoming events. This helps venues and event planners stay more organized.
Access a range of pre-designed document templates for various event processes. This includes customizable menus.
The platform’s tools revolve around a central events booking calendar, which makes it easier to keep up with events. The calendar includes tools for scheduling staff, adding automated reminders, and more.
As an “all-in-one” solution, Caterease is relatively extensive. You can also use the platform to access:
- Reports on business metrics
- A venue selection tool
- A lead capture and form tool to publish on your website
- Extra features to add to your subscription, like a guestroom manager, a prospect manager, and more.
Caterease offers a wide range of integrations with other software solutions, including:
- Constant Contact
- All Seated
- Cost Guard
- Food Trak
- Social Tables
- Client Point
Caterease offers three different pricing plans. These are:
- Express: $68/month
- Standard: $100/month
- Professional: $132/month
There is also a one-time setup fee of $200 per user. Besides that, you can add extra features and user profiles to your plan, which will cost extra. Select annual billing to receive a 20% discount on the plans.
To this day, Gather is a known name in the events industry. Gather event management software was a popular solution for managing events across the entire lifecycle.
The all-in-one cloud-based software provided a single dashboard where you could access important event information. This included information on your bookings, leads, payments, sales projections, and more. Among the core features were a central calendar, online payments, invoicing, branded documents, bookings, and a client portal.
Who was Gather Suited to?
Founded in 2013, Gather was one of the more established event management software solutions on the market. It was popular with wedding planners, event organizers, hotels, venue owners, and other hospitality groups.
However, Gather wasn’t for everyone. The software lacked some of the customization abilities that event professionals need and was expensive.
If you’re in the market for an event management system today, Gather isn’t an option. We recommend you look into Perfect Venue instead - see how it compares in our Perfect Venue vs Tripleseat comparison.
Some of Gather’s main features included:
Centralized Bookings Calendar
You could manage all bookings from the centralized booking calendar. Every update made on the calendar automatically updated all stakeholders involved in the event (chef, manager, staff, guests).
Although slightly limited in functionality, the native app provided access to Gather’s functionality on any location or device.
Integrations with Stripe and OpenEdge made it possible to accept payments and offer PCI-compliant credit card processing through the platform. Event and venue managers could also view outstanding amounts and send automatic payment reminders to clients.
Sales and Event Reporting
A sales and event reporting feature allowed you to automate reports and have visibility over event performance.
Gather’s client portal allowed for easy document sharing and return. Clients, vendors, and team members could access, sign, and send back proposals, invoices, contracts, and reports online.
Built-in templates gave you access to standard documents such as banquet event orders, proposals, and invoices. This helped you quickly generate professional-looking documents for your business.
Other notable features of Gather included:
- CRM database
- Multi-person task management
- 24-hour support
- No additional fees for extra users
Compared with some of its competitors, Gather offered minimal integrations:
- Google Calendar
That said, it offered strategic industry partnerships with EVENTup, OpenTable, BizBash, Wedding Spot, and Yelp.
Unfortunately, Gather didn’t provide transparent pricing details about its product. You had to get hold of them for custom pricing based on your specific business needs. Sometimes, we heard estimates putting it in the thousands of dollars annually.
To round up the Caterease vs Gather comparison - both provide great software solutions for event and venue managers. As to be expected, though, each has its strengths and weaknesses.
Caterease is designed primarily as catering software. So, there may be gaps in the event-specific functionality. Meanwhile, Gather is no longer available on the market.
Perfect Venue is an excellent alternative if you’re looking for a comprehensive event management solution. Expect features such as automated templated emails, digital proposals, a central calendar, task automation, PCI-compliant payments, low ACH fees, and more.