In an age when many mailers are finding ways to cut their budgets by sending out less, one company, CREEL Printing in Las Vegas, is in the middle of a mailing growth spurt.
In a typical month, the printer will ship more than 3 million pieces of mail, averaging more than $1.1 million in revenue. More than 80 percent of all Las Vegas originating Periodical Mail volume is entered through this one printer.
Because of CREEL’s ability to print and ship in a timely manner, it recently picked up the contract for the Christian Science Monitor publications. The new agreement should add another 500,000 pieces a week to CREEL’s mailings. With growth and added contracts like this one, the company expects to bring in more than $20 million this year in postal revenue.
With such massive volume, the printer has its own USPS Detached Mail Unit on site, staffed by Business Mail Entry Unit Technician Joe Ackley. It’s his job to help the company enter mail into the postal system. Ackley helps process the mailing statements, ensuring each mailing is properly prepared and documenting it for mail entry.
“Periodical publications, like the Christian Science Monitor, have loyal audiences,” said Ackley. “They expect timely delivery and it’s our job to help make that happen.”
On the Friday of this interview, Ackley’s very first job was to verify 158 pallets of bound printed matter. Another six jobs of 15-25 pallets were lined up after that.
“I’ll never forget my biggest day,” recalls Ackley. “There were more than 600 pallets and 16 tractor trailers going out of here.”
He must monitor the jobs as they are being prepped and ensure there is adequate transportation available to take the mail to the Processing and Distribution Center. It’s common to ask Transportation for several extra trips to accommodate larger jobs.
The mail is sped through the system in part because, at the very first entry, Ackley is ready with expert advice on the importance of mail design, acceptance and verification. Last year, he processed about 4,000 mailing statements.
Having a mail acceptance clerk is invaluable to CREEL, according to Vice President Chris Evans.
“It’s absolutely beneficial, because we are printing 24 hours a day,” said Evans. “To have someone like Joe verifying our mail, and also serve in a consultative and advisory capacity, is extremely helpful. For a company our size, it’s almost a business necessity.”