iDirect Government (iDirectGov) sales engineers fill a unique role within our team. Half customer liaison, half SATCOM enthusiasts, they work with our customers to see what they need the most and help our engineers develop products to fit that need.
We sat down with Senior Director of Sales Engineering Rolando “Roly” Rigual to get his take on sales engineering, how the magic happens and the most rewarding aspects of his job at iDirectGov.
What is your role at iDirect Government?
As the Senior Director of Sales Engineering, it is my job to manage the activities of the sales engineering (SE) staff and convey the value of iDirectGov products to our customers. In addition to the staff management and externally focused activities, I also participate in corporate strategy sessions and assist product management with research, development and the approval process for new products.
What does that entail?
Managing the activities of the SE group includes ensuring that the staff is adequately trained in our current technology and systems and ensuring the SE team activity priorities are aligned with our strategic goals. I also support high-level meetings in support of account activities which entails everything from supporting RFI/RFP responses, customer presentations, one-on-one meetings and trade shows.
What does your team do?
The SE teams’ primary function is to work closely with sales executives and channel development managers to identify opportunities for iDirectGov solutions.
In working with our account team to identify opportunities, it is our philosophy to act in a consultative role to customers and partners while providing them assistance in designing our iDirectGov satellite-based IP networks. We accomplish this by performing technical presentations to our customers and partners to educate them on our technology as well as assisting the government with testing and certification efforts (e.g., FIPS certification, ARSTRAT certification, etc.). Our close relationship with our customers means the SE team plays a major role in network planning, design and the development of solutions to support world-wide missions.
How does that benefit our customers?
The SE team is always willing to go above and beyond to overwhelm our customers with support. By providing our expertise, we enable our customers to use our solution in the most efficient way to support their missions. We consider ourselves to be partners with our customers, and their success is our success. Because of this attitude, we not only provide top class support to our customers, but we are also their advocates within our company and communicate their requirements and desires to our management team.
What do you like about your job?
I love the people here at iDirectGov. I enjoy coming to work each day and working with what I consider to be the best group of folks in the business. The culture here is fantastic. It is friendly, supportive, professional and caring. My 13 years here have flown by with laughter and a sense of purpose.
Also, every day brings something new – a new technology, a new proposal, new challenge – I am never bored.
Where were you before you came to iDirectGov?
Before coming to iDirect Government I was a Senior Sales Engineer for Nortel Networks on their Sprint account team.
How has that prepared you for your role here?
My time as a Senior Sales Engineer supporting a major telecommunication corporation taught me that attention to detail and listening to the customers’ needs are paramount. By being part of a large account team that supported one customer, I learned how important it is to establish and maintain a trusting relationship. Our goal is not simply to sell our customers equipment, but to be trusted consultants with our goals and objective aligned with theirs.
What’s one of your favorite products/solutions we’ve produced? Why?
I would say it’s a tie between the Tactical Hub and the 9050 OM.
The SE team was heavily involved in the design and development of the Tactical Hub. Being so close to a product’s design, development and introduction has been very rewarding.
In the case of the 9050 OM, I just think it is an elegant and high-quality design. I have been impressed by how rapidly our PLM and engineering team were able to take a new product from inception to existence and still be of the highest quality.
What do you hope to do in the future/how do you expect to grow with the company?
I hope to see iDirectGov continue to grow and expand, and I hope to grow with it. As we continue to expand our product and service offerings, I would like to see our sales engineering team grow and focus on more long-term and strategic projects in partnership with the government and our partners.