The Navy Exchange (NEX) at Naval Weapons Station (WPNSTA) Yorktown was awarded the Bingham Award by the Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM), July 31, in Sales Category 6 ($3-$7 million) for superior performance in 2013. The Bingham Award program was established in 1979 to recognize excellence in customer service, operations and management at NEX activities.
This was the first time in 23 years that the mini-mart was recognized with the Bingham Award, thanks to the work of store manager Monica Brown and her team of associates and senior management.
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The Bingham Award was presented to, from left to right, Capt. Paul Haebler, WPNSTA Yorktown Commanding Officer, and Monica Brown, Yorktown NEX Store Manager, by Robert J. Bianchi, Chief Executive Officer of NEXCOM. (Photo by Mark Piggott)
“It is not an easy award to win,” said Brett Haftel, NEXCOM Tidewater District Operations Manager. “The store competes with all the similar sales volume stores around the world. What makes it all the more impressive is that, during the end of 2013, this team’s focus was really dual-hatted, not only having to deal with the fourth quarter here, but having to put in long hours on the Cheatham Annex NEX remodel.”
“Winning this award represents a tremendous achievement on the part of all of our store associates and managers as well as the base,” Robert J. Bianchi, Chief Executive Officer of NEXCOM added. “Monica and her team take to heart the mission of our command at NEXCOM … to provide quality goods and service at a savings and to support Navy Quality of Life programs. Quality customer service, and more importantly customer satisfaction, is what the Yorktown associates deliver every day.”
In 2013, the Yorktown NEX customer satisfaction index survey rose one point to 92 while the Associate Survey Index rose five points to 83 by offering outstanding services like staying open late for ship’s arrivals at WPNSTA Yorktown, making special trips to other area NEX stores to get merchandise for customers, and expanding barber shop services for the military personnel at the installation.
Additionally, Yorktown NEX supported the base with a Customer Appreciation Day and a special social event, recognizing the new Chief Petty Officer selectees. The Yorktown NEX is an integral part of the installation, participating in exercises like HURREX and Solid Curtain/Citadel Shield as well as supporting Fleet and Family Support Center initiatives.
“Even though this is a small exchange, it acts like a big exchange,” said Capt. Paul Haebler, Commanding Officer, WPNSTA Yorktown. “Monica and her team of associates make this exchange feel bigger than the footprint here at the installation. They go the extra mile for our Sailors and Marines. I am extremely proud to be a part of this.”
The Yorktown NEX has made vast improvements across the board to enhance the shopping experience for each customer, including expanding space for sports nutrition, tactical gear, sporting goods and hydration bottles.
In addition, due to increased demand and customer feedback, the Yorktown NEX added more greeting cards, Navy/Marine Pride merchandise, athletic apparel and uniform items to meet the needs of the Sailors, Marines and their dependents.
“I find myself extremely honored to be receiving such an important award, the Bingham Award,” said Monica Brown. “Though I must admit that, somewhere deep inside, it was one of my goals. I am very grateful for the recognition the Yorktown NEX management and employees are receiving for their hard work today.”
“I also promise that we will continue to get better and, hopefully, we won’t have to wait another 23 years for another Bingham Award,” she concluded.
By Mark Piggott, Public Affairs Officer, Naval Weapons Station Yorktown