Considering that it’s Health Month on MPN, why not take this opportunity to both reflect on your personal health, and assess the health of your business? For me, Bikram Yoga is how I personally stay healthy and centered. On the business side, I am new to the health team, having spent 17 years at Microsoft, most recently leading our Reseller business. I have to admit, my first 90 days in the new role have been a bit overwhelming. Connecting deep partner experience to what is happening in the health industry is an exciting challenge. Why?
Health Industry Offers Tremendous Growth Opportunities
1. Health is truly a massive opportunity, as I outlined in my first blog from HIMSS last February. Advances in science and technology, as well as regulatory changes, make this an industry where market leadership is also in flux. Many of the segments appear to be 5-10 years behind other industries. The cloud is changing everything, and some of you will use this to leapfrog the established industry leaders. What I didn’t know before joining the team was that Microsoft actively engages with government policy makers and international agencies to support technology advances in health, especially around the cloud. For more information, check out www.microsoft.eu/health.
2. We don’t have enough partners focused on health to meet customers’ needs, both from an industry perspective (if we did, health wouldn’t be as far behind) and from a Microsoft perspective (we need to expand our partner ecosystem by 20%+ in the coming years).
3. Health is “cliquey”, probably due to the deep expertise required to serve patients, the regulations around health information, etc. Thus, the “last mile” of health industry-specific expertise really matters. We need to help you build this–either internally or through complementary partnerships. Engaging on this site will help you build out your network, and I will highlight partnerships to consider in my upcoming posts and tweets.
4. More of you have health practices and offerings than I expected. Take, for example, Kim Walker of Franklin Computer Services Group. I know Kim as a Small Business Specialist and leading Cloud Partner. I did not know her firm has a thriving practice for dentists, and that she is helping them move to the cloud. Danny Burlage, CTO and Founder of Wortell, our Cloud Partner of the Year 2010, has a third of his business in health. Watch the video to see how he got started, and to hear some advice for those of you interested in exploring health.
If you think expanding into health is the right prescription for growing your business, I encourage you to engage in our April Health Month. Share your ideas, follow my tweets, and also follow my colleague, Dr. Bill Crounse’s, very popular HealthBlog on MSDN.