In the business world, customization is key to success both inside the company and when dealing with clients. Traditionally, this customization has come from VARs who have customized and integrated various vendor products to address a specific market segment.
The Rising Trend of SaaS and Cloud Computing
In order to reach deeper into their specific markets, businesses have historically encouraged VARs to convert generic products and services into industry-specific solutions. With the rising trend of cloud computing and SaaS, many in the industry thought that VARs and other intermediate software channel partners, including the traditional IT department, would no longer be needed.
Evolution of Customization and Integration
However, just as businesses are evolving, the new generation of VARs are also capitalizing on the latest technology. While many thought that anyone within a business would be able to customize SaaS and cloud software to their industry without outside help, the truth is that SaaS still requires specific skills in integration and customization. VARs have recognized this and created more targeted solutions to meet specific business needs, such as catering otherwise generic Internet of Things (IoT) solutions to particular markets.
SaaS and the Cloud
One of the biggest benefits to cloud solutions and SaaS is that the information, service, or product doesn’t necessarily have to be on the premises in order to work for a business. This makes solutions easier to deploy, but VARs with customization/integration knowledge and skills are still necessary to meet unique and specific requirements.
In order to capitalize on this need, the new generation of VARs are combining different SaaS and cloud software to create a targeted business solution. Hybrid software can meet specific industry requirements and, in turn, allow a business to meet the needs of its clients faster and more accurately.
Targeting Specific Industries
There are a number of emerging products and applications on the market that are targeted toward specific industries. One example is the healthcare industry, which can suffer from a lack of information getting to the right people. Medical records that are already stored electronically benefit from applications that share them across cloud-based collaboration and storage.
With the proper authorizations, medical records can be accessed by all providers involved in a patient’s care. The Google Glass application “drchrono” is a good example. It allows storage of video, photos, and notes, which can be accessed by other medical providers as well as the patient.
The utilities, transportation, and logistics industries could also see a boom in IoT VARs using cloud-based storage. In utilities, remote management systems and monitoring can create new information services as well as save money without sacrificing quality. For transportation and logistics, IoT VARs can be used to target connected vehicles and help increase driver safety and knowledge.
It’s likely that there will be a number of new startupstargeting IoT platforms, like Google Glass, in the near future. As technology evolves, so do the devices used to connect to the Internet, opening up a market for enterprising VARs who can help create and customize software.
In order to succeed in IoT, VARs will need to target vertical markets in which they have good business relationships. They will also need to possess expertise in their given industry. By offering a combination of specialized skills in integration, analysis of data, and original software, VARs will be able to fill gaps in a specific industry’s processes. This customization will, in turn, enable a business to fulfill its own and client needs quickly and efficiently, while also keeping standards of quality high.