Topic: They started with kitchen cabinets and now you can see a whole house design so clear you’d think you were looking at a photo! 2020 Spaces can now help you give vision to your clients and close the deal.
Guest: Vanessa DeKoekkoek – Global Training Manager at 2020
3 Points for Success – Vanessa DeKoekkoek:
- Invest in yourself. Whether that’s education, tools, things that really can help you stand apart in your business
- Be open minded. It can be really challenging to be open minded in this business because it’s very easy to get some success and to then continue to do what you’ve been doing. But with technology things keep changing so quickly to stay on top of things. Try to just be as open minded as you can to adapt some new technologies or keep up with these new trends in the industry because it’s just going so quickly.
- Stand out within your business. You really want to differentiate yourself and find your niche. So we really want to help you create that identity. It may not be you know with one tool it’s just reminding yourself you’ve got to really look at your competition and your area to stand out.
James [00:00:00] So good to have you with us for this. Another episode of CareyBrosPros. Hi I’m James.
Morris [00:00:06] And I’m Morris. As professionals we know that kitchen and bath design is certainly one aspect of the sales and construction process that’s crucial to a profitable outcome.
James [00:00:16] Isn’t that – that’s an understatement.
Morris [00:00:18] Yes it is. We’re always looking for valuable information to share with our pro listeners. On this edition of CareyBrosPros we’re gonna learn how kitchen space planning and designing with a good CAD software can create designs and renderings that will impress your clients and turn them into buyers. Yes sir.
James [00:00:37] I like that.
Morris [00:00:38] Yes sir.
James [00:00:39] I like that.
Morris [00:00:39] Yes sir.
James [00:00:40] So if you know that excellent vision is 2020 well you’re in luck because our guest is Vanessa DeKoekkoek and she is global training manager at 2020. The makers of design software. Vanessa welcome to CareyBrosPros.
Vanessa [00:00:59] Thank you. We’re so excited to be here today.
Morris [00:01:02] You know Vanessa many of our listeners are not really up to date or aware of 2020.
James [00:01:08] Well where have they been.
Morris [00:01:10] You know it’s just one year there’s still a lot but I have to tell you the competition you know why.
James [00:01:14] You know I you know design software is very prevalent these days as you know more prevalent than ever.
Morris [00:01:21] Well you know 2020 is a global software.
James [00:01:23] And I said to Vanessa before she came on to the podcast I said I think I bumped into your product about 40 years ago.
Morris [00:01:32] Yeah yeah.
James [00:01:33] She said that would be just about right. All right. When it was a challenge.
Morris [00:01:36] Yeah yeah yeah I remember using the program initially and we needed something a little broader at the time.
James [00:01:45] Because we were a modeller and.
Morris [00:01:46] Because we needed young customer management and contracts and a lot of other things. But you know tell us about 2020 Vanessa and what it’s doing today.
Vanessa [00:01:57] Yeah so absolutely. You know as you said 2020 is a global company. As a whole, We are an end and software solution for designers manufacturers and retailers. However if we really focus on kitchen and bath design which is really our biggest market. Many people may have heard of 2020 or 2020 design and that’s our kitchen and bath design tool. That’s the one area that most people are aware of right. Actually we’re right a lot of different areas too.
James [00:02:31] Right, right. I’m familiar and I’m going to learn something just as our our pro audience is going to learn something. But I’m most familiar with 2020 as a kitchen and bath cabinet design software.
Morris [00:02:46] Yeah me too me too.
James [00:02:49] Cabinet design. I’m not talking about any other aspect of kitchen or bath design specifically cabinet design.
Morris [00:02:57] Does 2020 do more than cabinet design because I believe that’s where 2020 started originally isn’t it.
Vanessa [00:03:04] Exactly. So cabinet design and working with Cabinet manufacturers is a big part of our business. But we also work with plumbing manufacturers lighting manufacturers all of the industries that you know work alongside cabinetry to fill up that entire space. If you really want to look at everything we even work with office furniture manufacturers and beyond to right now in 2020 design we have over four hundred catalogues which means as a designer it’s actually quite a challenge sometimes to understand and know all the different things that are available. Some of the products that you might sell but to have everything at your fingertips essentially an electronic version of the catalogue of that product. We try to make that really easy for them to design and space plan lists.
James [00:03:55] OK so Vanessa I’m going to ask it in my own words because I’m going to guess that some of the pros listening want an answer to this question. We’re design build remodeling contractors and so we do kitchens and we do baths we do whole house remodeling. Sometimes that involves the exterior room additions and that sort of thing. Does 2020 have a solution for our business that can do all of that?
Vanessa [00:04:22] You know what’s interesting is I’m going to answer this two different ways. I’m going to say yes and no.
James [00:04:26] OK that’s fair.
Vanessa [00:04:28] Some people will look at this and as part of their business they may decide to look at 2020 is like an add on. So you might be using a CAD software that could do that entire home design exterior like you said we’re 2020 design complements that space by really letting you step into very complex spaces like a kitchen or maybe a closet or a bathroom where there’s a lot of pieces to make sure that we order and we order it correctly.
Vanessa [00:04:59] So we don’t make any mistakes. And the cool thing about it is when you’ve got the catalog that’s built into the software it’s essentially a click of the button not only to show beautiful 3D renderings to the consumer but also to make sure that I can produce an order with a click of a button. Because I want to make sure that I get everything to the right manufacture perfectly.
James [00:05:22] Well truly that really was my understanding because I’m going to call it a global design software that will do you know foundation and floor framing and wall framing and roof framing and all of that. But then when you really want to drill down into the specifics I mean 2020 can really tell a story not only builder to subcontractor or manufacturer and often the cabinet manufacturer uses 2020 anyway but it’s great for painting a picture to the homeowner. And I’m going to tell you the devil is in the detail because we recently had an issue with the design of a particular cabinet detail and it wasn’t particularly clearer with a one software but a product like yours 2020 really can drill down and get specific about what this cabinet is going to look like.
Morris [00:06:23] You guys have a back end to your software that runs the machines that optimize and cut the cabinet parts don’t you?
[00:06:31] Exactly. Exactly. So you ask them that manufacturer’s perspective. You know they work with us so that way they can make sure they’re making the most of their product and building everything out. And imagine that manufacturer is building their catalog at that moment. So they’re building their catalog they’re factoring how much they need to actually produce everything in their factory but then that catalog is also used in the professional design tool. So it’s manufacturers investing once and getting that information to everybody. That’s the magic behind it.
James [00:07:05] Now a moment ago you mentioned that 2020 has the largest selection of content catalogs cabinet tree plumbing fixtures lighting et cetera. Can you be a little more specific and how that would be of benefit to designers and architect design/build contractors.
Vanessa [00:07:25] Absolutely. So before I started working at 2020, I was a kitchen designer and in a lot of kitchen design shops or dealers or even large retailers many of them approached the business and offer a variety right. They want to be able to offer their contractors a great line. They want to offer maybe a higher end line. They might look at it like a good better best scenario. So if I’m going to be specifying product as detailed as cabinetry I want to make sure that I can have access to a catalog not just one catalog but multiple catalogs. So that way I can get that good better best quotes or rendering in the same way.
James [00:08:08] Oh really! Makes perfect sense. People expect you know these reality TV shows and on HDTV and all of that. They’re a double edged sword. They create terrific demand for folks like us in the home improvement business but they sabotage us to the extent that they establish unrealistic expectations on the part of the buyer with regard to price and the amount of time that it takes. Now the reason I mentioned this is because they do a great job of painting a after picture with virtual reality and all of that. So my point is this that you bring in plumbing fixtures you bring in lighting and you bring in the components the furnishings and that sort of thing that really helps communicate the full picture to the buyer so that they know that they’re getting something that will really meet their expectations.
Vanessa [00:09:09] So true and you totally took the word out of my mouth expectations. That’s a lot of what when we’re teaching people how to use 2020 design to really leverage the tool in helping them communicate their idea because naturally most designers are quite visual. However the majority of people maybe aren’t as visual and don’t know how to read a floor plan or imagine what I’m dreaming up as I’m moving my hands around making them an idea.
Morris [00:09:38] You know we’ve been showing layperson’s plans for decades and in the last few years. Well actually about 10 years we’ve been able to show models of bathrooms and that sort of thing. Now we’re able to show the whole house in 3-D a virtual house. With all of its components right down to the window and apron and drapes and you know a bowl of fruit on the counter and and complete furnishing and people are now getting it they’re now understanding what you’re trying to convey. You know we all thought jeez plans are easy to read. Everybody in the industry knows how to do it and come here. This is a plug. This is a switch. But they don’t remember. They don’t know what any two symbols are. They can’t visual only a very few people can visualize in 3D. Now that we have 3D the whole world is changing.
James [00:10:41] Well I think Vanessa that speaks to your point: expectations management and what that does for those of us who make our living improving homes is it gives us the tools that we need in order to more fully communicate what we intend to do to someone’s home so that changes can be made on paper for digitally these days before we tear something out or you know install something and the client says Well that really isn’t what I expected. You know.
Vanessa [00:11:14] Exactly. I mean and kind of look at it, too, another way. Have you heard a statistic. If I were to shoot at you hey an average consumer in today’s North American market how often do they actually either remodel their kitchen or build a new kitchen. You know it’s a quite a low number. Most of the things I’ve seen are recording like either once or twice in their entire life. All right you know we’re not talking about the DIYers and the flippers but just like the average consumer. So most of them although they have watched HDTV like you were just saying most of them have never gone through this. Yes they’re really relying on us as design professionals to guide them and hold their hand. But then being able to show them before they invest in that entire project showing them that space in a 360 or a panorama or some sort of virtual reality. I mean it just absolutely solidifies their design decision. Yeah. From the designers perspective too. I’ll be honest I’m a very visual person. But if I can see the design as well sometimes I’ll catch mistakes in my own layout because I can see it completely in 3-D.
James [00:12:27] I want to talk for a moment and thank you for coming clean for us. I want to talk for a moment about 3-D renderings and how those have evolved and how important they are. And also 360 panoramas. Tell us a little bit about those.
Vanessa [00:12:44] Oh my gosh. I mean it’s such a critical piece to today’s business one because of the expectation of the consumer. There are still some areas that I will go to they’re like No we don’t really do a whole lot in that region unless someone asked for it. However in a lot of regions it is critical to be part of the design package that’s presented to someone that kind of sets you apart. You know a lot of people are going to price shop and do all their research online and try to search for the best deal. But what if as a designer I could just blow someone away with that 360 panorama. Would you basically just means I can stand in that space and look at every single wall and actually understand it well before you know purchasing. But we’re seeing a lot of designers taking those 360s and using it as a presentation tool just to engage someone and gain their trust day one when they meet them so they don’t want to go shop somewhere else.
James [00:13:48] Yeah I have to tell you now what about the headset? Tell me about the headset.
Vanessa [00:13:53] The headset so there’s a lot of different versions of this but basically the idea of this is taking a small device usually like a phone you’re able to open up the visualization or the 360 view of your space on your phone and you can put your phone either in something you might hear the high end it’s going to be like an oculus headset. That’s something that like teenagers are using for gaming or you might go to you know some sort of crazy game place and they’ll put this big headset on your head it’s kind of a surreal experience. But then there’s also real simple versions too like a cardboard box or a small plastic box. That’s all it does is it lets you look at your phone in a stereoscopic view which is like two windows basically a window for each of your eyes and it kind of gives you that 3D feel.
James [00:14:44] Honest to God I don’t need any of that. I’m at your Web site right now and I’m looking at a panoramic view of the kitchen and this has got to be the most user friendly clearest. This looks like a photograph of a kitchen. Is this a photograph of a kitchen. Or is no. This is a design that did says Designed by David Fenton for 2020. This is not a photograph. This looks like a photograph.
Vanessa [00:15:12] Isn’t that amazing. When you look at those details it’s all manufacturers products. But it’s also likely that that designer went in and they picked their wall color from ABC manufacturer. Maybe Sherwin-Williams. they pick their flooring. They picked every single detail because so often that full package is what they’re able to sell their client so they want to be able to show that. And it just comes across so well.
James [00:15:36] I just love I love where technology is taking us in our business scales or our listeners do as well. OK. All right we could talk for hours and hours and hours and we know that you folks are actively involved with associations like the National Association of the Remodeling Industry and the National kitchen and bath association and we’re going to guess because you’re the global training manager at 2020 that you you know interface with the users and you train them how to use your product. Yes?
Vanessa [00:16:06] Yes. Yes. So honestly I have the best job in the world because I get to work with associations like that because those are the people that you know like they’re choosing to go above and beyond their 9 to 5 job. Well not that everybody has a 9 to 5 job but that they can go and learn more and that continuous learning through groups like that. So we go out all the time to teach continuing education. The really fun part is we often are talking about more than just 2020 design but all the other technology that complements shelling and designing what 2020 design. Super fun.
Morris [00:16:41] I love it.
James [00:16:41] Honestly Morris.
Morris [00:16:42] What?
James [00:16:42] I haven’t seen anything like this. Yeah I haven’t seen. I mean this. I just went to their Web site.
Morris [00:16:49] I think you’re going to pay 10000 thousand dollars for that program if you want that 10000 dollars to begin.
Vanessa [00:16:55] Is that right Vanessa.
Vanessa [00:16:57] Well maybe if you consider you know the first 15 years or so. Noo it’s great. We actually just changed to a subscription model which makes it really easy to invest right away. We have a couple different levels depending on what is required in the day to day job. But you’re looking around fifteen hundred dollars for that first year subscription.
James [00:17:17] Yeah. But for you know for someone that makes their living doing this. Oh yeah. You can amortize that over a couple or three jobs.
Vanessa [00:17:24] Absolutely. I mean it’s just a critical piece.
James [00:17:28] Kind of jobs you sell those big big jobs.
Morris [00:17:32] Vanessa here on CareyBrosPros we like to ask our guests to share three points for success with our pro listeners. Can you share yours?
Vanessa [00:17:41] Oh my gosh yes. This is the best question. I would say one of the biggest things that we’re always recommending because we can really amplify people and their business by using a tool that’s so advanced like 2020 is invest in yourself. You know just invest in whether that’s education tools things that really can help you stand apart in your business. It can be really challenging to be open minded in this business because it’s very easy to get some success and to then continue to do what you’ve been doing. But with technology things keep changing so quickly to stay on top of things. Try to just be as open minded as you can to adapt some new technologies or keep up with these new trends in the industry because it’s just going so quickly.
Morris [00:18:29] And we’ve been using a computer based program for 25 years and we were sitting in a share screen today with a lady in Canada of all things and she is talking about converting us and our program to a Web based device that works with all platforms Windows Apple IOS everything. And you know the data goes into the cloud and you can you know take it to your desktop wherever you want to take it. And it’s so different than what we’ve been doing for literally decades.
Morris [00:19:14] So I agree with you to be a techie!
Vanessa [00:19:18] [laughs] And but don’t be like nervous that it’s like you know there’s a thousand different things out there. I love to help people find maybe that one gap in their business that one area that they either don’t feel super confident in or that area that you know your competition is kicking your butt in that area is where we need to find the techie tool to help amplify your business. It’s actually really easy.
Morris [00:19:42] Got it. Number two?
Vanessa [00:19:43] Number one was invest. Number two is be open minded. So I’m already down to number three is going to kind of echo that exact quote I was just saying about competition and and really standing out you know within our businesses today. You talked to some. Business owners that are small businesses have gone out on their own and maybe worked for a larger company in the past. But how do they make themselves different in whatever size they are. In a lot of times technology of course can help us stand out. But regardless you really want to differentiate yourself and kind of find your niche. So we really want to help you create that identity. It may not be you know with one tool it’s just reminding yourself you’ve got to really look at your competition and your area to stand out.
Morris [00:20:29] I love it.
James [00:20:30] Nothing wrong with standing out in a positive way that is. Wonderful. Our thanks to Vanessa DeKoekkoek. She is the global training manager at 2020. And you may learn more about their company and their offerings by visiting them online at 20 20spaces.com or check them out on social media @2020spaces.
Morris [00:20:57] And remember you’ll find our guests information as well as additional podcasts videos and articles on our Web site at CareyBrosPros.com.