Matthew Hammond, V.P. of Sales & Customer Service at Century Printing & Packaging What is your title and role at Century?
I’m the Vice President of Sales and Customer service. I oversee a good portion of sales to customers, newspaper, and non-newspaper customers, and I supervise two customer service representatives who handle a majority of our inbound orders.
How long have you been with the company and how did you get to where you are now?
I’ve been with Century Printing and Packaging since 2013. Previously, I worked at the Greenville News in advertising sales, and my experience with newspaper advertising is what turned me on to Century and initially the newspaper front-page sticky note program. My experience in newspaper advertising allowed me to easily network with newspaper executives and understand their needs and wants. Over the years I have transitioned into other types of customers in the food, beverage, and chemical industries.
Describe your job including the things you are passionate about and the challenges of your role at Century Printing and Packaging.
I have a passion for networking and enjoy working with customers to help solve the challenges that they have with various products. I love it when they call and say, “Matthew, I have a problem that I hope you can help me with regarding my labels.” I love meeting new people and helping them. I have developed so many relationships within and outside the office due to my professional role. I’ve made a lot of friends inside and outside the office. I enjoy going to conferences and meeting folks and working with them to help increase the market share for their particular brand.
Whether unsupported film packaging or adhesive labels, every business segment is different in terms of need. I have to be familiar with their product, the market, their target while having a knowledge of our production capabilities and limitations. I never want to over-promise or under-deliver to our customers. I’ve learned a lot about the various types of substrates we can print on and our customers’ needs with regard to labels and flexible packaging. There have been so many aspects of the production process that I have learned over the years.
What changes have you seen in the company since you started?
Over the years we’ve definitely grown from a manufacturing standpoint as a label supplier reaching different business segments such as beer and beverage (wine and liquor) to the chemical industry while expanding in all of the markets we serve through the years. Internally we have really increased our efficiency in production while continually providing high-quality products at faster rates and sometimes lower costs which have really helped increase our competitiveness in the market.
How important is it for you and production to communicate and work together?
It’s extremely vital! I always consult with Neil, our COO, and Roger our Production Manager when it comes to a new product or client need. I want to make sure we are able and capable of producing the customer’s product efficiently and consistently meeting their requirements in terms of quality and performance. Consistency is key to labels and branding in terms of production. Their brand/product is oftentimes the face of their company, and we don’t want to hinder that in any way. I would rather under-promise and over-deliver to a customer than to under-deliver!
What kinds of trends are you seeing develop in the industry?
A lot of the business segments we work with have been hurt by Covid-19 and others have benefited and even expanded. For example, the beverage and food market has increased as more people were staying at home and there was more need for prepackaged beverages and food at home, and those food packages and beverage cans/bottles need labels. Many chemical companies have also increased business for obvious reasons with the new sanitation protocols. Products like hand sanitizers and cleaning products have boomed, and we have worked with our clients to accommodate their increased needs.
Describe the culture at CP&P and what it’s like to work here
I love working with the folks I work with and look forward to coming into the office every day. I prefer coming into the office to work because of the people, and I can do my job more efficiently on-site. It’s sometimes difficult to work remotely because of the hands-on nature of our industry. We need to see and feel the products. I like to be able to see the products I sell before we actually ship to our customers. We’re hands-on and involved from start to finish. We work closely with production to make sure we are on the same page to produce the highest quality products for our customers. Our production department is on board with that and they have skin in the game as well. The pride our production staff has in the quality of our products is obvious and they are always on board to make changes or improvements as needed. There is such a good relationship between sales and production at Century Printing and Packaging.
I really appreciate the opportunities Century has given me over the years. I enjoy the people I work with. Century Printing is a great company to work for and with.
Tell us about your family and background? I’m a Greenville native and was raised in Taylors. I love baseball, bowling, and Clemson Football. I was raised in Taylors. I’m a musician and play the piano/keyboard in church. I also enjoy teaching my teenage son to play as well. I graduated from Furman University so there’s a natural rivalry between me and our president, Ben Waldrop who graduated from Wofford. My wife and I enjoy hikes with our son, watching him play baseball, and going to the mountains.
At Century Printing and Packaging we have a long line of tenured employees who make up our team. We are proud of their work, spirit, and the contribution they make to our quality of work and production. All of them work hard to fulfill customers’ orders and produce high-quality work.
Ben Waldrop, President Century Printing and Packaging, Inc. Greer, SC 29651 (Tel) 800.344.7509