Jacaranda’s Ross Pulvirenti wins ACBA Customer Service Person of the YearIf you’ve been following the Jacaranda blog throughout this year, you’ll know by now our customers and partners – from educators and students, to their parents and booksellers – are very important to us as a company and one of our core areas of focus. We were therefore thrilled when late last month, our colleague Ross Pulvirenti and his team won the Australian Campus Booksellers Association (ACBA) Customer Service Person of the Year award. ACBA represents 30 bookshops and 115 stores across Australia so the award is highly competitive and prestigious, and a real honour to receive. Ross and his team support both the Jacaranda school division and Wiley (Jacaranda’s parent company) higher education division so they have a significant responsibility. We caught up with Ross for an interview about the award and what his team has done to earn such a distinction.

1) Tell us a bit more about the ACBA awards.
Ross Pulvirenti

The ACBA recognizes several educational publishers in the market and voting is done by customers (those that have bought texts from publishers associated with the ACBA) across many categories such as marketing efforts, sales reps, distribution process, and customer service. Winners for each category are announced at the annual conference, as well as an overall Publisher of the Year winner.

2) Why is Customer Service important at Jacaranda/Wiley?

My answer is simply that customer service is important in every industry. Not only is it essential to ensure customers come back to you for future business, but it also common courtesy to treat others as you wish to be treated yourself. Every phone call is important to us so we just try to be as courteous and helpful as we can be to customers that contacts us.

“Every phone call is important to us so we just try to be as courteous and helpful as we can be to customers that contacts us.”

3) What is the vision/mission of the Customer Service team?

We aim to respond to each inquiry within 24 hours, which of course may not always be possible during peak season. However, we ensure that all customers are treated the same, regardless of their size or monetary value for Jacaranda/Wiley.

4) How is the Customer Service team at Jacaranda different than others?

My team is extremely dedicated in ensuring that all customers are treated with dignity and respect. We take phone calls from a wide range of people, including some with little to no technical knowledge. In these cases, they may not know how to access a browser or eBook so we advise them every step of the way until the task is complete. We have a lot of patience which can lack in other Customer Service departments.

“My team is extremely dedicated in ensuring that all customers are treated with dignity and respect.”

5) What do you look for when you hire someone on your team?

Beyond the skill set required, I try to gauge if the person will have a pleasant telephone manner and the patience required to deal with demanding customers.

We’d like to congratulate Ross and his team once more and thank them for all their efforts in making the Jacaranda and Wiley customer service team the best in the industry! If you have an anecdote involving Jacaranda’s customer service team, please feel free to share it in the comments below. Your feedback is appreciated.

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