New IDC Health Insights Report Evaluates Largest IT Consulting and System Integrators to U.S. Healthcare Payer Market

  New IDC Health Insights Report Evaluates Largest IT Consulting and System
  Integrators to U.S. Healthcare Payer Market

 Effects of reform and technology innovation threaten to disrupt the delicate
                    balance between payers and consultants

Business Wire

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. -- May 06, 2013

IDC Health Insights announced a new report, Vendor Assessment: U.S. Healthcare
Payers' Guide to IT Consultants and Systems Integrators, (Doc #HI240501) to
assess the largest IT consulting and systems integration (SI) services vendors
to the U.S. healthcare payer market. Payers can use this assessment to build a
short list of candidates quickly, with more thoughtful consideration of the
future of technology and the market dynamics of coopetition between payers and
consultants. Consultants can use the report to refine the ways they compete
for new projects and engage with payer challenges. The IT consultants
specifically evaluated in this report include: Accenture (AC), Cognizant,
Computer Sciences Corp. (CSC), Dell, Deloitte, HCL Technologies (HCL),
Hewlett-Packard (HP), International Business Machines (IBM), Infosys Public
Services (Infosys), Optum, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), and Wipro.

Key findings include:

  *Reform is the primary driver for evolution of consulting capabilities in
    2012 and 2013, perhaps overshadowing the development of consulting
    capabilities that will be necessary to meet the challenges of technology
    innovation in the coming years.
  *At the same time that reform and technology innovation are making payers
    and consultants more interdependent, these trends are ushering in a new
    era of coopetition between the largest innovative payers and their
    consulting firms.
  *The interrelated effects of reform and technology innovation threaten to
    disrupt the delicate balance between payers and consultants and require
    both parties to make careful calculations about how they bid for new work
    and engage with each other tactically and strategically.

"The pressure of meeting near-term reform objectives may be overshadowing
longer-term payer/consultant relationship dynamics," said Sven Lohse, research
manager, IDC Health Insights. "Demand and supply of consulting capabilities
need to evolve to meet the future challenges of technology innovation and the
evolving dynamics of coopetition."

Findings in this research are based on analysis of payer organization survey
data and briefings from the largest IT consulting and systems integration
practices in the U.S. payer market, as well as interviews of customer
references. According to results, payers are seeking support from IT
consultants and systems integrators in grappling with the many initiatives
that are being generated by the need to reduce healthcare costs and, more
directly, by legislative reform. This has led to increased IT spending by
payers. Only one of the large payer firms (membership >1 million) surveyed
expects to decrease spending for IT services in 2013. Among those large payers
with growing IT services spending, reform is largely driving increases in IT
services spend.

The payer IT consulting market is currently experiencing two contradictory
trends. On the one hand, payers and their IT consultants are becoming more
interdependent. On the other hand, the largest payers are developing
capabilities that will enable them to compete with IT consultants. IDC Health
Insights asserts that both payers and consultants in this industry vertical
will be very sensitive about balancing these trends within their
relationships. In the near to medium term, competitive bidding will remain an
important component of this balancing act even for consultants that have
experienced enduring relationships with their clients.

This report is the first in a series that will appear on a quarterly basis
throughout calendar year 2013. Related reports will cover the following
healthcare sub-segments: provider, health information exchange organizations,
and alternative payment organizations (frequently accountable care
organizations). This report has a companion piece called Best Practices:
Making IT Consulting Relationships Work for Payers in the Era of Reform, (Doc
#HI240417) that provides best practices aimed at helping healthcare payers
realize more value from their relationships with IT consultants and systems
integrators. For more information on these reports, IDC Health Insights will
host a complimentary one-hour Web conference featuring Sven Lohse and Janice
Young, "U.S. Healthcare Payer IT Consulting Market in the Era of Reform," on
May 28th, 2013 at 1:00 p.m., U.S. Eastern time.

For additional information about this study or to arrange a one-on-one
briefing with Sven Lohse, please contact Sarah Murray at 781-378-2674 or Reports are available to qualified members of
the media. For information on purchasing reports, contact;
reporters should email

About IDC Health Insights

IDC Health Insights assists health businesses and IT leaders, as well as the
suppliers who serve them, in making more effective technology decisions by
providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting
services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry experience, our
global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing
the payer, provider and life sciences industries. International Data
Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence,
advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a
subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology, media, research, and events
company. For more information, please visit, email, or call 508-935-4445. Visit the IDC Health Insights Community


Meg Sullivan, 508-935-4237
Senior Marketing Specialist
Attune Communications
Sarah Murray, 781-378-2674
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