D3M recently had the pleasure of talking with Thomas Brammann the owner of Reliable Communications, an Icom two-way radio dealer in Davenport, Iowa. Thomas explained how they currently use D3M within their day-to-day business activities and the benefits he’s seen from its implementation.
How long have you been working with two-way radios?
I've been working with radios for 42 years. I founded Reliable Communications as I was interested in CB and ham radio since I was 12 years old. I have always had a love for two-way radios.
Who does Reliable Communications do business with? What industries?
Reliable Communications is an Icom radio dealer. We primarily sell to schools, hospitals, factories and public safety, but offer our services to anyone that can use to two-way radios.
As the president of Reliable Communications, what do your daily activities entail? Who do you interact with on a daily basis?
Everything from accounting, to bench work, to sales, to customer service and everything in between. I help with pretty much everything that needs to happen here on a day-to-day basis. We have three employees, so on a daily basis, I interact with everyone from the sales team, to end users, to tech managers and more.
Where did you first hear about D3M? Are you using co-op dollars to pay for your subscription?
I first heard about D3M this March at the Icom dealer conference. I thought it looked interesting so I checked it out. This year I did not have enough co-op dollars available when I bought this year’s subscription so I purchased it myself. However, I am going to utilize co-op dollars for next year’s subscription.
Prior to D3M, what tools were you using to design and document two-way radio networks? How does D3M compare to other tools you’ve used in the past?
I used to use basic tools like Word, Excel and pen and paper, that's all I had. The presentations I can now create using D3M are completely professional. Once I began using D3M it was a night-and-day difference between what I was doing before.
What are some of the "pains" you have in your day to day activities – is D3M helping to solve them?
Presentation is everything when you present a proposal to a customer. With my past process, I was unable to find the associated graphics. It was quite time-consuming. I then had to take all the information and create a professional looking proposal. With D3M, I can easily create professional diagrams quickly and easily.
Did you find the tool intuitive to use?
There was a learning curve, as D3M is so robust and there's a lot to it. However, I found that to get full value out of it, you need to pretty much play around and experiment with it. The process of learning D3M wasn't difficult it just took some time to fully understand how to use. It was well worth the investment!
How did you find the 1-hour training webinar? Was everything covered that you needed? How can we better help you onboard to D3M?
During the training webinar, I found everything I needed was covered. I was able to ask any questions I had and they addressed all of them. They showed me what I needed to see and I thought it went really well. In the early stages when I was trying to get familiar with the tool I think an FAQ page and how-to videos would have been really helpful.
Editor’s Note: D3M is currently expanding our database of FAQ in our Help Center. When in the app, simply click on the main menu on the right side and visit the Help Center for how to videos and articles.
Has D3M helped you win any sales?
When I signed up for the 14-day trial it was right as I needed to do a large proposal, so I thought it would be a great test of D3M. I wanted the presentation to be professional and was able to do so using D3M. I thought it looked great when it was done and once there were changes to be made after the initial meeting it was easy to update, reprint and resubmit. It really worked out great. When presenting the proposal, I printed it to share with the client, as I had made a packet to hand out to each department head. After that, I only need to reprint the quote pages with the quantity changes I had made, which I found extremely easy to do. I found implementing the prices into the quote tool was extremely easy and I got it right away. I have yet to use the margins tool, but I believe it will be very valuable to me in the future.
Have there been any WOW moments, where you said... that's cool, I didn't know D3M could do that.
It actually happened at the Icom conference where I first saw D3M and what it could do. I was able to get a one-on-one demonstration with the D3M sales representative and that was the WOW moment for me. I thought I had to have it, as it would make a night-and-day difference with my presentations, making them more professional and improving the image of our company.
How often are you using D3M and does it save you time?
I use D3M every day and it absolutely saves me time. It saves me the most time during the creation of the system configuration graphics. Just drag and drop, connect the dots and you're done.
Who do you share your documents with today?
I'm currently the only user, however I do print out the documents to share with my team. I also plan on using D3M as a support tool after sales are completed.
What do you think the most significant benefit of using D3M is?
The most significant benefit I have seen from using D3M is providing a professional looking quotation. I have been looking for years for an application like it and have bought different presentation and quotation software, however, they were nowhere near as robust as D3M and never came out looking as professional. I am glad I discovered D3M.
Have you found anything frustrating about D3M?
Not at all. I find the help button in the right-hand corner of the screen a great asset. I just click on it and within minutes I get an answer to any questions I may have.
Do you have comments, suggestions or additional features that would help us improve D3M? Can you think of any additional features that would take D3M to the next level?
At this point in time, I don't think there is anything I would add. I think it is comprehensive and has everything I need.
If you were to review D3M what score would you give it out of 10?
Would you recommend D3M to a friend in the industry?
Please finish this sentence in 25 words or less… “D3M has been beneficial to Reliable Communications because…”
...it helps me to present an absolutely killer proposal to the customer.