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What Partners Need to Know Before Selling into the Healthcare Sector

This post is part of a new series featuring Brian Higgins, Principal Healthcare Consultant at Comstor US. Comstor is a recognized global leader in Cisco product distribution and an established provider of networking and advanced technology solutions. Brian is a sales and business development executive with 35 years of experience in the global healthcare information technologies industry. He has a proven and successful track record of establishing and executing go-to-market strategies for both start-ups and well-established companies in the healthcare space. He is also a trusted sales and business development advisor to information and medical technology companies selling into all segments of the healthcare industry.

I recently hosted a webinar on the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) for a community of technology resellers.

HIPPA and HITECH are the US version of “privacy and security” laws that are getting so much attention in our industry. I thought I had a reasonably good grasp on the subject, but my intuition was that the subject was complex enough to warrant an expert. We brought in a nationally recognized expert by name of Bob Chaput, Founder and CEO of Clearwater Compliance LLC, and (luckily for me) he did an outstanding job of explaining a very complicated set of rules and regulations in a simple and easy to understand way. 

While it was interesting to learn more about specifically who is covered by these laws and what their specific obligations are, the more enlightening discussion related to how far behind most industry stakeholders are in their compliance and the resulting economic ramifications.

For those of us in the channel that recognize the enormous opportunity of delivering technology to the healthcare sector, this is an important subject about which to have a first level of understanding. It not only gives us the credibility that our healthcare end users are looking for in a vendor, it also represents an opportunity to deliver valuable advice and services.  Finally, it’s a law that we might fall under if we are in the business of maintaining healthcare communications or information technology (HCIT) platforms, or delivering cloud services.

Similar privacy and security laws exist around the world, requiring partners to play close attention to what is occurring in their regions relative to this topic. Read More »

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Indiana’s Largest K-12 Education Institution Adopts Virtualization to Get Kids’ Attention

Have you visited your local high school or middle school lately? If so, it wouldn’t surprise you to know that students spend considerable time focusing on recreational media unrelated to their coursework. Everything from Facebook and Pandora to Netflix and Twitter.

This presents a particular challenge for teachers who must compete for students’ dwindling attention. However, there is an answer. Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS), for example, adopted virtualization as their gateway for delivering quality education.

This means it doesn’t matter where kids are located, what their educational needs are, or even what device they use to access technology. It also means that IPS, the state of Indiana’s largest K-12 education institution, is meeting kids where they “live.”

To enable this anywhere, anytime approach, IPS turned to several Cisco partners, including Cisco Premier Partner Bell Techlogix, Cisco Gold Partner MCPc, and Cisco Gold Partner and Master Unified Communications Specialized Partner Netech. They also worked directly with Cisco to help build their network of the future.  Read More »

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Get Your Partner ‘Perks’: Log in to Cisco.com

Remember the ad slogan, “Membership has its Privileges”? The same rings true for Cisco partners.  When you log in to Cisco.com, you’ll find content specifically created to help you learn, sell, and promote your brand as a Cisco partner.

When you log in, you’ll see we enhanced Partner Central (which contains information on certifications, specializations, offers, incentives, and more) and have also greatly expanded partner content throughout the Architecture and Product areas of the site.

When you see, for example, the “For Partners” tab at the top of a page, or “Partner Resources” along the left side of a page, click and log in to access partner content for a specific area, product, or service—including sales guides, marketing and demand generation campaigns, and competitive information.

We also offer an additional experience when you visit the “Support” and “How to Buy” sections of the site (you must be logged in as a partner for access). There you’ll find valuable links to partner-only tools and content—including content that is specific to you as an individual, if you have taken advantage of the MyCisco Workspace.

This video gives you a brief tour of Cisco.com and what’s available to you when you’re logged in as a partner.

Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind when you visit Cisco.com:  Read More »

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Child Makes ‘Networking History’ (Translation: We’re Acquiring Meraki)

Did you hear the one about the pre-teen who installed a switch and some wireless devices in under ten minutes? And did I mention he is a regular kid? Okay, maybe an online gamer, but definitely not a member of his school’s computer club.

Maybe I made that up. But then again … I am talking about the power of Meraki. This cloud networking leader is all about making it simple to manage wireless, switching, and security solutions from the cloud. And, in case you missed it, Cisco announced its intent to acquire them for $1.2 billion on November 19.

For our partners—and our customers—this is good news. Read More »

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The Next Evolution of Cisco’s Cloud Partner Strategy: Cloud and Managed Services Program

As the trend for delivering technology as a service continues, now more than ever, partners must evolve their business to support the demand for new consumption models such as cloud and managed services.  In order to support our partner’s evolution, Cisco continues to evolve our Channel Partner Program to help partners profitably monetize the cloud and managed services opportunity.

In September, we announced an evolution of the Cloud Partner strategy to bring data center infrastructure and cloud into the mainstream of our partner program with the introduction of the Cisco Master Cloud Builder Specialization.

Today we are pleased to announce the next phase of our Cloud Partner strategy. Read More »

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