At Dispatch, we love to learn more about our customers and the story behind the business. In this Company Spotlight we had the opportunity to connect with Vice President of Smartpress, Matt Chapman, based in Chanhassen, MN. Read on to learn more about the culture, values, and goals of this business.
Tell us about Smartpress. What is it that your company does?
Smartpress is a premium online custom printing service, specifically designed for creative professionals and graphic designers. We print custom designs from business cards and brochures to large signs and banners for independent designers, agencies, small businesses, and nonprofits across the United States.
How did Smartpress get started and when?
Smartpress came online in 2009. Our parent organization, The Bernard Group, started in 2000 and continues to provide design, print, and in-store custom manufacturing services to large retailers and some of the most prestigious brands in the world. High expectations for quality are significantly important to our retail brands, and we wanted to provide that same level of quality to small businesses and independent designers. Smartpress was the answer!
Who does your staff consist of?
Including our retail-focused employees under The Bernard Group brand, we have nearly 700 employees across four locations in Minnesota along with an office in New York City. Our diverse staff includes sales, marketing, designers, engineers, estimators, project managers and coordinators, prepress technicians, software developers, printing press operators, bindery and finishing specialists, shipping and fulfillment, along with common corporate functions like HR and finance. The wide variety of roles provides a number of unique career paths between teams and roles.
What is the culture of Smartpress like?
As a 100% employee-owned company, our success is largely attributed to our employees' talents, heart to serve, and the ability to wow each other and our clients. We are passionate about consistently exceeding our clients' expectations and devoted to servicing them. This takes fully engaged employees who are committed to achieving excellence and continuous improvement every single day. It's teamwork with a strong sense of purpose and urgency. In fact, one of our core company values is Wow.
What makes Smartpress unique, especially for your area?
At Smartpress, we truly want to provide the best possible online print buying experience. And yet we also want to offer expert consultation and advice, along with world-class customer service. We track customer satisfaction ratings very closely, and over our last 100 reviews from customers, 97 of them were 5-star reviews. To us, that level of service is an expectation rather than a goal.
What is the long term goal for Smartpress?
While continuing to build upon the success Smartpress has seen so far, we want to continue expanding our online offerings. We also offer a branded Smartpress experience for larger corporate customers, a web-to-print software platform that provides distributed ordering, branded print and promotional materials, and collateral for marketing and operations. Long term, we would like to change Smartpress to a verb!
How did you get started at Smartpress?
My last company valued profits and shareholder value over its employees and even customers at times. I thought there must be a better cultural fit and leadership style for me, and I found Smartpress through my network. Since we're 100% employee-owned, the Smartpress culture better aligns with my values as it relates to how we treat employees and customers.
How did you hear about Dispatch? One of our corporate values is Ownership and we believe employees are empowered to make decisions to WOW our customers. The decision to use Dispatch came directly from our shipping department employees.
What was your process for sending and receiving inventory prior to Dispatch?
It was like most companies, extremely manual.