There are organizations—healthcare ones among them—that are oriented towards insourcing functions, even when those functions lie outside of the organization’s core competency. There was a time (and still may be times) when full insourcing of the supply chain made sense: think Ford Motor Company in its early days. However, it is becoming more difficult to make a case for insourcing non–core functions, especially in healthcare, when better efficiency, more flexibility, higher profit margins and improved patient care can be achieved through strategic relationships.
That being said, you don’t want a strategic relationship with just anyone. Strategic relationships that align the capabilities and interests of two different entities can enable both organizations to deliver better service and better products. In today’s complex and dynamic healthcare marketplace, agility, efficiency and quality are the new drivers of success, and leveraging strategic relationships can turbo-charge performance.