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Service That Makes a Difference for the County College of Morris Bookstore

Posted by Liz Schulte on 12/21/20 6:30 AM
Topics: college store growth opportunity, campus retail solutions, college bookstore industry trends

County College of Morris (CCM) Bookstore became an MBS Premier Partner because of the benefits and the level of service provided by MBS. Additional MBS support, access to the MBS Rental Management Tool and getting more books, all make it easier for the CCM Bookstore to do business in today’s collegiate retail industry.

Service That Makes a Difference for the County College of Morris“The partnership makes the ordering process easier. It makes rental processing easier. It makes everything easier,” Jeff Lubnow, Director of Auxiliary Enterprises, County College of Morris Bookstore said. “Primarily, we became an MBS Premier Partner because of the service. I’ve been in the store for nine years and we have consistently gotten calls, both in-person and over the phone or email, from MBS. You can definitely see the MBS reps in the store. They call and they follow up. That’s important. Now, it’s the quantity of books, too, but it started as the service.”

As an MBS Premier Partner, the store has access to exclusive benefits and additional support that helps streamline processes and accomplish more.

“Service is clear and far the most important aspect for us. We might be able to find books elsewhere, if we were willing to put in the work, but MBS makes it all easier for us. The quality of service has been at every level, not just with our rep. Whether it is the home office people or the software team. We don’t currently have the MBS POS, but the sales reps are available and knowledgeable when we have questions. The door is always open and I like that. So, it has really been up and down the entire ladder. Every layer of support that we have come across has been very strong,” Lubnow said. “We are sort of on our own little island in New Jersey because there are so few independent stores left here. We get a ton of our news and information from our rep and the MBS Foreword Online emails. They keep us connected with other independent stores. It’s that commitment to service that is irreplaceable.”

Another aspect that has helped the CCM Bookstore tremendously is the MBS Rental Program.

“The rental program and rental re-quotes have been a lifesaver. Rentals are our lifeblood. This piece is both a value piece and a service piece for us. MBS does a great job following up and offering us higher quotes when they can at the end of the term,” Lubnow said. “Our MBS representative, Paul, helped us get access to the application used by MBS Premier Partners for rental processing [Rental Management Tool]. We were able to cut hours and hours off of the time it takes for rentals and save all of the $4,500 a year that we were paying for the previous system we used to scan our rentals.”

Ultimately, it is the complete all-around service that CCM Bookstore has gotten through its Premier Partnership that makes such a daily difference in the store. The store now has more resources and access to the low-cost course materials it needs to meet the demands of today’s market.

“Another big benefit is the access to TMS Support. Melissa helps us with ordering, bidding and that type of stuff. They’ve helped us track down more books in general and get better discounts. Instead of standard base discounts, we are able to get those bins up early and MBS can spend more time chasing those cheaper books for us. We don’t have to worry about resubmitting bins or anything like that. Our TMS rep helps us get all of that set up,” Lubnow said. “We went from shopping six to seven wholesalers to using MBS for pretty much everything. We have gotten such a decent fulfillment rate from MBS that we don’t have to struggle as much to get the books we need. Once our MBS bin has had time to fill up, then we check the other wholesalers to see if they can fill in a couple of the gaps that are left. But otherwise, we almost exclusively shop from MBS now.

“The buyback support is also enormous for us, too. It hasn’t had as much impact in the last nine months, but up until then we did our daily buybacks and our opening and closing with MBS. Right now, we are set up so we can at least have a presence online, which we wouldn’t have had without them. So that’s another huge benefit.”

When asked why others should consider becoming an MBS Premier Partner, Lubnow once again spoke to the service his store has received.

“If they want to get a lot of low-cost books, then that’s the place to go. We have had an easier relationship with MBS than with any of the other wholesalers. That’s why we moved in the direction of the partnership,” Lubnow said. “New Jersey has some rather Byzantine laws for contracts, but MBS was patient with us the whole time and helped us get it all ironed out. We are happy and pleased with the partnership and look forward to continuing it.”

 

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