David's Blog 3-5It doesn’t look like the urge to merge in the Human Capital Technology space will subside anytime soon. We saw Kenexa officially become an IBM company to start off the year in HCM Tech M&A with a bang. Well, the hits keep on coming, with some deals giving us déjà vu, and others taking a completely different course altogether.

Similar to the IBM/Kenexa deal, now we have Certpoint Systems being acquired by Infor. Like IBM, Infor offers a series of enterprise applications and services, but until now was lacking a concrete learning solution. And just like what IBM saw in Kenexa, Infor saw in Certpoint. It reminds me of the heyday of Seattle grunge music, when every major record label was scouring the Northwest, looking for the next Nirvana. Every label had to have a Seattle band then, and now apparently every big Enterprise Resource Management player has to have a learning solution.

Now, for a different, more interesting acquisition, we have NetDimensions acquiring eHealthcareIT to create a new business unit called NetDimensions HealthCare. Rather than a technology or customer buy, this acquisition signals a strategic move into a specific industry vertical – something we haven’t seen much of. NetDimensions has long touted its strength in compliance, especially in the Health and Life Sciences industries, and the timing of this acquisition is no coincidence.

With healthcare in the U.S. undergoing sweeping changes, compliance is set to become the critical issue in the industry. Rather than position itself as a company that can provide compliance training services to any industry including healthcare, NetDimensions now has an entire business dedicated to healthcare compliance.

Don’t be surprised if you start to hear more noise in from other vendors in other industry verticals in the near future.

David Wentworth

David Wentworth has been a senior research analyst in the human capital field since 2005 and joined the Brandon Hall Group in 2013. He has authored reports and articles on various human capital subjects with an emphasis on workforce technology. He has contributed to several reports published by ASTD, including authoring Mobile Learning: Learning in the Palm of Your Hand, The Rise of Social Media: Enhancing Collaboration and Productivity Across Generations, and Instructional Systems Design Today and in the Future. His work has also appeared in Compensation & Benefits Review and T+D Magazine.