As part of our Spotlight series, we talk to Nicky Bentley, Sales and Marketing Assistant at Roberts Metal Packaging about the importance of her role and what challenges are facing the metal packaging industry today.
About the Job…
1. What is your current job title? What are your main responsibilities and tasks?
Hi, my name is Nicky and I have worked as a Sales and Marketing Assistant at Roberts Metal Packaging for the last eight years.
My job responsibilities include generating quotations, communicating with customers and suppliers via email, processing repeat orders and amendments, and handling product inquiries. I also enjoy working on exciting new business, which could be from a new customer, product or both! Another very important part of the job is sending product samples to customers for product testing, as it enables them to make an informed decision before placing an order.
2. Describe your typical day (if there is one!).
My typical workday is varied however, customer satisfaction is at the heart of it all as I strive to provide the best service to our customers and clients. We always aim to respond to queries within 48 hours, ensuring that customers have all the information they need when they need it!
3. What motivates/inspires you about your job? What aspect(s) are your greatest source of a sense of satisfaction, accomplishment and pride?
When I first started working in the packaging industry, it was a completely new experience for me as previously I had worked for investment banks. However, I found it really interesting to see the project go from an idea to a finished product that is available in stores.
I’m particularly interested in cosmetics and beauty products and I find it motivating to work with brands in this field. When I see products that I helped produce on the shelves in the shops, I certainly feel proud and I can’t help but show off these products to my family!
4. What do you most like about Roberts’ company culture? Which of our corporate values most resonate with you?
Roberts was the first job I came back to after my maternity leave. I had to learn the manufacturing process from scratch, but I really enjoy how the role is customer oriented. I find that the atmosphere at Roberts is friendly and relaxed, working in a close-knit team means that we are always looking out for each other. We all share the attitude of wanting to get the job done to a high standard and meet our customers’ requirements while having fun doing it.
5. How has Roberts helped you in your career development since you started?
After taking a career break to raise my children, I have gained a lot of confidence at Roberts. I have attended exhibitions in Paris and Birmingham – working behind the scenes and on the stand – which has really boosted my knowledge of the industry. Being able to pursue something I enjoy after becoming a mum has been really rewarding.
6. What’s the most unusual/innovative/unconventional metal packaging project you’ve been involved with? How successful was its outcome?
The metal packaging projects that I’m always impressed by are with brands such as Lush and Benefit. Seeing it go from project notes and print designs at the very beginning to becoming a final product on the shelves is so rewarding. We also work in non-cosmetic industries like food and homecare – for example we make parts for Kazoos for Generation Music and even containers for airgun pellets. It can really vary as our paths cross lots of different industries.
About the industry…
7. What are the biggest challenges and opportunities for the metal packaging industry at the moment? How can you help address them?
The biggest challenge at the minute for the metal packaging industry is that companies are still keen to use plastics as a main packaging source. However, with the implementation of the plastic taxes, we are hoping that aluminium becomes a product that more manufacturers utilise due to its versatility and recyclability, especially as consumers become more environmentally conscious.
And now for some career advice…
8. What are the most important skills that school children and university students should spend time developing to set themselves up for career success? Why?
I think that it is crucial that schools place greater emphasis on teaching life skills. This includes money management, budgeting, and maintaining a healthy work-life balance, all of which are essential for building a foundation for future success.
Additionally, it is important for young adults to push themselves toward their desires and passions when deciding what career to pursue, as it will enable them to excel and enjoy what they do. Above all, the most important skill is to be able to voice your opinion.
9. Who’s your biggest hero (work or life) and why?
My biggest hero is my dad. He was originally from Malta and moved to England alone at the age of 17, leaving behind his parents and two brothers, so that he could pursue better opportunities. Sadly, his father, my grandfather, passed away not long after, so he brought his whole family over to England.
He was an entrepreneur in the property business and his bravery has always inspired me to step out of my comfort zone and become the very best version of myself. He always used to say, “Life is a journey to be enjoyed, don’t take things too seriously.” His courageous spirit stayed with him until the end, and I try to live by his values by treating others with kindness in both my personal and professional life.
10. Have you got a secret talent/party piece?!
I always end up on the dancefloor at parties! Growing up in the 90s, dance music became an integral part of my life from a young age, and I still love its mood-lifting abilities today. My go-to music for dancing is ABBA, especially after seeing ABBA Voyage recently, Michael Jackson and R&B music. I am also a huge movie fan. I love spending time with my family and going on holiday and travelling to different countries and exploring different cultures.