Four Ways VARs Can Specialize in the Healthcare Vertical Market

The healthcare press continues to buzz about HIMSS11—the recent Healthcare I

March 16, 2011

3 Min Read
Four Ways VARs Can Specialize in the Healthcare Vertical Market

By Michael Houghton 2

health care technology

The healthcare press continues to buzz about HIMSS11—the recent Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society conference. Organizers say it was a record-breaker, with more than 31,000 making their way to the Orlando, Fla., convention facility and 1,042 exhibitors showing their stuff. The HIMSS event has always been a big deal for the IT industry, but this year’s conference drove home two key learnings for me: the expanding opportunities in the healthcare vertical for solution providers and the need for specialization to ensure success.

At this year’s conference, the keynote speakers did a great job of highlighting the major initiatives being explored or implemented in healthcare today. Many of these initiatives align directly with the health care objectives of our major technology suppliers. As a solutions distributor and an honored exhibitor at HIMSS11, we couldn’t help but get excited at that kind of synergy.

Getting Started

According to Jim Bindon, director of our healthcare solutions practice (Avnet HealthPath), solution providers interested in growth should keep these key topics presented at HIMSS11 top of mind:

  1. Meaningful Use

  2. Electronic Health Records

  3. Health Information Exchange

  4. Connected and Collaborative Care

While the healthcare vertical has the potential of big profits, it comes with an equally steep learning curve. Solution providers must first possess a thorough understanding of the entire healthcare ecosystem. Many of the solution providers selling into healthcare today would also add that government mandates and recent healthcare reform efforts can make the healthcare vertical even more challenging. To be successful, partners must differentiate themselves as trusted advisors and industry specialists who understand these unique issues and provide the solutions today’s hospitals need to remain competitive, efficient and compliant.

Avnet has exhibited at several previous HIMSS conferences, often with our value-added resellers who have made substantial investments in healthcare and Avnet’s SolutionsPath methodology. At this year’s event, it was exciting to listen to our resellers as they conversed with healthcare professionals in a meaningful way about topics like health information exchange and electronic medical records, as well as IT-related challenges they’ve experience in their own healthcare organization. The ability to understand and relate to specific industry and organizational concerns is the key to entry and long-term success in the healthcare vertical. It was very apparent to me that the reseller partners who joined us in our exhibition space this year had taken full advantage of the industry training and enablement that Jim and the HealthPath team offers.


To learn more about healthcare, check out the HIMSS website. If you’re a solution provider considering the healthcare vertical in your growth plans, Avnet Technology Solutions offers a step-by-step roadmap to success in healthcare.

Michael Houghton is VP of vertical market solutions for Avnet Technology Solutions, Americas. Monthly guest blogs such as this one are part of The VAR Guy’s annual sponsorship. Read all of Houghton’s guest blogs here.

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