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Outstanding Black Box Customer Service Prevents Major Travel Disruption



It’s late on a Saturday night of a three-day holiday weekend. You are a tech support manager at one of the largest and busiest airports on the East Coast.

And your network crashes — not your website, but a mission-critical network at a bustling airport. You’ve got a vital application for passenger screening and security at a major airline terminal that isn’t operating. You need to solve the problem quickly!

While you are able to track down the cause of the trouble, you realize you need to order a number of mission-critical parts, and need them to be delivered promptly.

Who do you call?

For the IT manager at this busy airport, the answer was Black Box. He knew that someone would answer the call even at this late hour — our support line is staffed 24/7, every day.

On Saturday night, May 23, 2015, Dave Takach, technical support specialist at Black Box for 25 years, received the call. Dave talked through the technology requirements and prepared an order for a Modular Express Ethernet Switch, an 8-port fiber module, eight (8) fiber optic couplings, and eight (8) ST–SC Duplex Riser 1-meter cables.

Dave, in turn, called in Sherry McCarren, Sales Operations Manager with Black Box for 34 years. Understanding the urgency of the customer’s situation, Sherry and her husband Larry McCarren, Receiver Supervisor and a 33-year employee of Black Box, went to the warehouse, which was shut down for the long weekend. It was so dark at first, while they waited for the lights to come on, they used their cell phones as flashlights. They hand-picked the necessary parts, packed the order, and called an express shipping partner to get immediate pickup for early morning delivery.

Black_Box_Customer_ServiceSince it was so late on a Saturday night, the shipping company didn’t have any available flights to the destination airport on which to place the critical parts—so they drove the order over 400 miles after picking it up from Sherry’s house around 11 p.m. The parts arrived at the destination by 5:30 a.m. Sunday morning and the network was back up by 6 a.m., in time to avoid serious travel disruptions.

On the customer survey, the IT manager notes, “Service has been provided above any expectations. Great job! Our project management team is well aware of the high quality products Black Box provides.”

In recounting her adventures, Sherry says, “We made a lot of phone calls back and forth with the customer and the shipping company. Going into the warehouse at that time on a Saturday was a little stressful — it was dark, and it took a while for the lights to come on. We contacted security right away to let them know we were in the building so they wouldn’t mistake us for thieves!”Silver-Stevie-Award

At the same time, Sherry wouldn’t have done anything different. “We had a customer with a urgent need for a mission-critical application. Not answering the call was not an option.”

Black Box is proud to have dedicated employees like Dave, Sherry, and Larry. Their focus on efficiently solving customer problems is one of the reasons Sherry’s customer service team has won the coveted Stevie Award for Customer Service Department of the Year for 2014 (Silver Level) and 2013 (Bronze Level), and also won the 2013 People’s Choice Award for Outstanding Customer Service.


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