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    Wegmans, Publix Make BusinessWeek's List of 'Customer Service Champs'

    NEW YORK -- Rochester, N.Y.-based Wegmans Food Markets, and Publix Super Markets in Lakeland, Fla. got props "Customer Service Champs" from BusinessWeek magazine here, in a ranking of companies based on their service levels that appears in the magazine's March 5 issue, on newsstands today.

    NEW YORK -- Rochester, N.Y.-based Wegmans Food Markets, and Publix Super Markets in Lakeland, Fla. got props "Customer Service Champs" from BusinessWeek magazine here, in a ranking of companies based on their service levels that appears in the magazine's March 5 issue, on newsstands today.

    The inaugural "Customer Service Champs" list ranks the best providers of customer service and reveals the techniques, strategies, and tools those companies use, includes two grocery retailers. Wegmans came in at No. 5, and Publix ranked nineteenth in the list of 25 businesses.

    The top three spots went to USAA Insurance, Four Seasons Hotels, and Cadillac, while

    "For these companies, great customer service is much more than just a job for the front lines or the call centers," BusinessWeek said in a statement. "It takes coordination from the top, bringing together people, management, technology, and processes to put customers' needs first. Technology is leveling the barriers between alpha companies and also-rans, making great customer service one of the few ways companies can distinguish themselves."

    The publication drew up a list based largely on brands in J.D. Power & Associates' database. Additionally, 3,000 readers were surveyed, generating a pool of names most associated with treating customers well. BusinessWeek then asked J.D. Power, a sister division of the McGraw-Hill Cos., to survey customers about the brands that were named by readers but not already in its database.

    JetBlue originally ranked fourth on the list, as the customer surveys were performed early last year. Following that company's extremely public recent travails, however, BusinessWeek opted to drop the airline from the current ranking.

    Other retailers that made the list are Nordstrom, at No. 4; Starbucks, at No. 10; and Cabela's, at No. 15.

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