I was fortunate enough to be invited to the Oracle Benelux Users Group Conference - OBUG Connect 2013 - in Antwerp this week.
The keynote session by Chris Leone covered the strategy Oracle had for its applications. Chris described how customers wanted roadmaps for the next 3, 5 or 7 years because software is such a big investment. To put some context on that, Oracle spends $4.5B on R&D and has over 29,000 people engaged in development activities. (Note to Cyprus give Oracle a call).
There is clearly a big move towards investment in the cloud. Oracle's strategy is to give customers a choice with all their applications continuing to be supported under the Applications Unlimited banner (AU).
Fusion Apps is continuing its organic growth. Oracle announced they now have 400+ customers with around 100 already live and most of those using SaaS.
Oracle recommended the upgrade - optimise - extend approach. Get the latest releases to achieve a lower TCO, optimise using Fusion Middleware (FMW) or engineered systems during updates,and extend the footprint with a co-existence strategy. (More on co-existence in a minute).
A few statistics thrown at us included:
65% of companies want to collaborate via social media
90% want to have apps on mobile
56% of executives believe the cloud will make organizations more competitive
Now Taleo is in the Oracle fold, consider just how much data has passed through Taleo systems in the last 10 years? This application data can be mined to produce big data analyses etc.
Beacuse my interest in in Fusion HCM, I was particularly interested to attend a session by Chris Coolen of OC-C with Gerald Stam from their customer the City of Rotterdam. Rotterdam has c. 13000 employees and is undergoing a period of rapid change. They decided to adopt Fusion Talent Management in co-existence with their EBS HR system. The motives? It is a rapidly changing organization, it needs to find the right leaders and it needs to have a transparent process. Hence - Fusion Talent Management!
Rotterdam chose to deploy in the cloud. Why? Time to implement was significantly reduced when compared to an on-premises implementation; they were able to immediately leverage the Fusion Middleware components of the system; scalability through the subscription model; and last but by no means least - mobile technology was a big factor.
This was an example of how you can deploy rapidly. The project plan was weeks 1-3 plan and design, weeks 3-8 configuration, weeks 9-10 validation and week 11 go-live.
Some of the lessons learned are useful for the rest of us. They found the documentation lagged the releases of Fusion by some way - I can testify to that! The HR2HR process was found to be remarkably easy with mapping completed in 1 day! The main problems were found in connectivity around the co-existing systems.
Whilst the software did pretty much what it said on the box, there was still a need to make sure all the other aspects of a project were managed well -like preparing the organization for change, communication and change management.
Lots to learn here, but well done OC-C and Rotterdam.