The Customer Is Always...A Partner

Formed out of Universal Media Connections, a systems integration company founded in 2001, Boise, ID-based Nimbus360's mission is simple: to provide AV and security systems to what its creators originally viewed as a "frustrated market."
Founded by partners Bernie Kattner, Gene Karren and Robert Neeley, the company began modestly in Kattner's garage, targeting its efforts at the commercial systems integration market. The goal? To offer outstanding customer service, something the three professionals believed was lacking in their marketplace. "We saw a definite need for quality, customer-oriented service," Kattner, who holds the title of company president, explained. As such, solid customer service during the course of a project, as well as attentive customer follow-up, was integral to the organization's overall vision. "We wanted to be a company that was a partner with the customer, rather than a supplier."
Today, Nimbus360 employs 30 staff members-specialized in everything from phone systems, to design, security, IT, networking, programming, electricity and beyond-working between the organization's headquarters and the company's location in Sun Valley. This latter office services the company's newly developed residential arm, which was incorporated into the firm last summer, with the purchase of Electronic Home Systems. In the commercial realm, Nimbus360 services clients across the board, from educational facilities, to corporations, retailers and houses of worship.
Thanks to the frenetic pace of technological development, Kattner confessed that getting the right equipment at the right time can sometimes pose a challenge. "We notice that there is a big slowdown in the LCD market in getting equipment in on time," he said. "For example, when we order LCDs, they will have them in stock, but when the time comes around to install the system six or seven months later, the model has changed, the size has changed, the specifications have changed. We notice a big problem with LCDs lately, and that has been a challenge for us."
According to Kattner, Nimbus360 is active in reaching architects and engineers in an effort to keep them abreast of the latest technology, and how it can be incorporated into their designs. "We spend a lot of time with architects and engineers on a one-to-one basis," he explained. "We also host training classes for architects and engineers; on a 6-month basis we have training courses for the architects and engineers. We also provide a resource binder that includes product and component information. We try to stay very close to the architects and engineers; we let them know that they can call us and talk to us any time."
In an effort to practice what the company preaches-quality customer service-Nimbus360 strives to be the sole point of contact for the client, even if that requires the subcontracting of work that generally doesn't fall under the systems integration umbrella. "Our company is built as a one-stop shop." Kattner noted. "You don't have to go out and hire the security company, or IT people, or phone systems companies; you can just hire us. For example, we did a job out at a government facility, and they hired us to do everything. That included digging up the cement work, digging up the stage and the floor, and laying in conduit. We also did the electrical; we have journeymen electricians on staff. We supply the whole package. If the customer needs something, they don't have to figure out who is going to do what. We can handle it for them."

Carolyn Heinze has covered everything from AV/IT and business to cowboys and cowgirls ... and the horses they love. She was the Paris contributing editor for the pan-European site Running in Heels, providing news and views on fashion, culture, and the arts for her column, “France in Your Pants.” She has also contributed critiques of foreign cinema and French politics for the politico-literary site, The New Vulgate.