Sunday Oct 25, 2015

Oracle Applications Cloud Release 10 UX highlights: Enhancing your cloud through extensibility

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

We want you to be able to run your business your way, including making your Oracle Applications Cloud look like your business. Changing the user experience to reflect your business needs is easier than ever with Oracle’s modern cloud extensibility tools. These tools are tools designed with simplicity and ease of use in mind.

Our goal is to increase your users’ participation through a familiar and relevant experience, deliver tailored productivity to your employees, and extend the value of your cloud. We’ve covered how the extensibility features have evolved, from Release 7 to Release 8 to Release 9, and we’ll show you below how these imperatives translate to the extensibility features of the Oracle Applications Cloud Release 10.

The key takeaways in Release 10 Cloud User Experience Extensibility:
  • Even more visual design options, in a friendly UI
  • Even more options for organizing the UI
  • A seamless way to add what is unique for your business or industry with our user interface developer toolkit and Page Integration

Appearance: See the difference

Visual design is an integral part of the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience, so we’ve paid particular attention to it in Release 10. Now it’s even easier to configure your cloud visual design to match your branding and identity for a consistent user experience.

Customers now have more options for matching your business’s color scheme and logo in Appearance.

Administrators have more flexibility to define the logo, the background, and the color scheme according to your branding using either files or URLs. There are 6 different homepage icon styles delivered out-of-the-box. There are 8 different themes, or color and style combinations, delivered out-of-the-box. But we know that sometimes that is not enough; you can make an almost infinite number of changes to tailor the visual style for your users. You can even modify button colors and add corner rounding.

You’ll recognize flat dark, flat light, matte, rich, and shiny icon styles from previous releases, but the dot style is new.

Oracle has also enhanced general usability and provided some updated visuals in Release 10, such as icon style. The icon styles are the same, but they have received a different visual treatment.  Can’t decide? Save all your themes for later use. You can now exactly match your organization’s color palette to enforce consistency across applications because modifying the logo or color schemes applies the changes everywhere.

Streamline your layout in Structure

Structure helps you configure the layout of the user experience for consistency with your business requirements. You have the ability to drill down into landing pages and make edits to the pages, hide or unhide applications to streamline user roles, reorder applications, create new page entries or categories, and set system options.

Admins have the power to create and edit landing pages, hide, expose, or re-sequence items, and move them to other categories to streamline user roles for convenience.

Protecting Your Cloud

All of these features would be useless without the protection of sandboxes. We’ve made it easier not only to configure the applications but also to make and test changes before pushing them live. The administrator must deploy a sandbox session to make any changes. The new sandbox header appears on every UI where configuration changes are being applied, so those changes are metadata-store-enabled (MDS-enabled) and upgrade- and patch-proof.

What’s unique to your business, industry:  Designing your own user interface

We know there are pieces of functionality you want that are custom to your business and industry. You also want them to look and feel like the rest of your cloud. Page Integration lets administrators add a new page containing an iframe. This allows external applications to be integrated seamlessly into the Oracle Applications Cloud, creating a consistent user experience. Administrators can conveniently manage all new pages from a single location.

Bridging the gap between the Oracle Applications Cloud and a third-party application couldn’t be easier with Page Integration, which seamlessly loops in external applications.

You have so many new options for icons in Release 10. An administrator can easily select one that feels intuitive and best fits your needs from the included icon library to ensure a consistent user experience.

This is an example of editing a landing page icon for your integrated application.

Partners can seamlessly integrate their PaaS-deployed applications that emulate the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience through Page Integration. You can select from the Oracle Marketplace or design your own. The Oracle cloud user experience strategy has included a toolkit for just this need since release 8, and now it’s being updated for Release 10. Sketch the user interface in an hour using our tools, get the buy-off you need, then use the pre-packaged tools to build it and deploy it. 

Improve support with Record Issue

This is an example of navigation to Troubleshooting: Record Issue in the Oracle Applications Cloud, which can help you keep records of problems relayed by your help desk.

Improve your support ticket accuracy, help shorten issue time, and reduce support costs with a feature called Record Issue. Organizations working with Oracle Support or managing their internal help desks can use Record Issue to help reproduce and document any errors or performance issues.

Administrators can collect page diagnostics and performance statistics from the Oracle Applications Cloud, and recordings can be configured to focus on selected modules with various levels of detail.

Pulling it all together

Of course, you could use the Oracle Applications Cloud right out of the box. But we know customers must continually find ways to differentiate themselves, internally and externally. In Release 10, we’re offering you tools in Appearance, Structure, and Page Integration to grow a familiar user experience organically, to keep the focus on what makes you unique, and to safeguard the value of your cloud. Since it’s so easy for you and powerful for your employees, the latest features make extensibility a must for meeting your business needs with the Oracle Applications Cloud.

Find out more

Friday Oct 16, 2015

OpenWorld 2015 Breaking News: Catch Your PaaS4SaaS Train Here!

By Misha Vaughan, Oracle Applications User Experience


How do you close the gap between what your customers want from the Oracle Applications Cloud and what Oracle Partners need to make that happen? Talk to our partner experts, who used the Oracle user experience (UX) strategy of enabling Platform-as-a-Service for Software-as-a-Service (PaaS4SaaS) to deliver easy-to-implement solutions.

Connect with a hand-picked selection of partner experts who have each had specialized training in user experience, the Applications Cloud, Oracle Application Development Framework, and Oracle PaaS.  They each have an awesome PaaS4SaaS story to share at Oracle OpenWorld 2015 in San Francisco. They will be at the Oracle Applications User Experience Cloud Exchange, an open house demo and networking event, on Monday, Oct. 26, from 1-7pm.  

You’ll find our partner experts at the Cloud Exchange at the following times:

  • 1 p.m.: Sona Manzo, Vice President, US Oracle Solutions, Hitachi Consulting
  • 2 p.m.: Basheer Khan, Principal, Knex Technology
  • 3 p.m.: Debra Lilley, Vice President, Cloud Solutions, Certus Solutions
  • 5 p.m.: Lonneke Dikmans, Managing Partner, and Luc Bors, Managing Partner & CTO, eProseed
  • 6 p.m.: Sten Vesterli, Senior Principal Consultant, Scott/Tiger
If you haven't registered, here's the link.  A non-disclosure agreement is required to attend, but we can help you with that.

See you at Oracle OpenWorld 2015!

Wednesday Oct 07, 2015

Walking the Talk: OAUX takes on the Internet of Things

By Sarah Smart, Applications User Experience

The concept of the Internet of Things (IoT) might seem like an open-and-shut application. IoT is all about the services: transforming data from disparate devices into valued insights and actions. The recent task at the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) IoT Design Jam was to get over that gut reaction to simply throw a chip into everything and come up with some enterprise apps use cases for the Oracle Applications Cloud.

Laurie Pattison, Senior Director, User Experience, and her team put the design jam together at Oracle headquarters. Her challenge to the OAUX team? To develop an IoT pitch, value proposition, and wireframes demonstrating the usefulness of sensors connected to the Internet and showcasing an enterprise apps use case. “I found the experience invaluable to learn what people’s perspectives are on IoT,” Pattison said, “and for getting IoT into the DNA of people.”

The OAUX team gets warmed up for the day.
Photo by @lsptahoe

“IoT is an area of strategic investment for Oracle,” said Misha Vaughan (@mishavaughan), Senior Director, OAUX Communications & Outreach. “They've announced an IoT cloud service (just for storing IoT data for now). It's time for us to start talking to customers and partners about it. So we needed to start getting up to speed on what [IoT] means for enterprise users.”

Pattison works with Yen Chan and Kathy Miedema of the OAUX team to refine their use cases.
Photo by @mishavaughan

Participants in the design jam first received an overview of IoT so that all teams were starting on the same page. “The only way [to internalize IoT] is to spend some time with it and come up with a solution that works for you,” Pattison said. “People get the cloud story. Less obvious is what IoT can bring to the table.”
Teams then took most of the day to develop and refine their pitches using Raspberry Pis as the sensors. Finally, they pitched their ideas, and a panel consisting of the AppsLab’s Tony Orciuoli, Vaughan, OAUX GVP Jeremy Ashley, and Pattison voted for the winning use case, which happened to be Sarahi Mireles and Andrew Gilmour’s supply chain solution.

The design jam winners pose with the judges and their new swag.

Oracle has made enormous investments in enterprise user experience and IoT devices, both in their infancy, and the intersection of the two could enable enterprises faster and with lower risk, Oracle’s key value proposition. Since the devices are capable of providing so much data, the smart IoT pitch will drown out the noise and make that data meaningful to an enterprise user. For example, more specific data about workflow generated by motion detectors could help improve business process applications and perhaps hone HR policies.

“Everyone on a team needs to understand IoT because they are still responsible for different parts of the IoT approach,” Pattison said, but it was especially useful for the OAUX team “because they are going to be on the front line of partner, customer, and sales interactions in FY16,” Vaughan said. “Internet of Things is definitely on the menu of emerging technologies we will be talking about in this next year, and I wanted my team to be up to speed on the concepts, issues, and how to help relate it to nontechnical audiences.”

Learn More
If you’re wondering what’s happening Oracle’s IoT front, check out these other links to recent IoT events and posts:

Wednesday Sep 23, 2015

See the future of the Oracle Applications User Experience at our demo station at OOW 2015

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

Danlu Fu and Ivy Leung, Oracle Applications User Experience team

If our daylong sessions still don't entice you (let's face it: we know you're busy), stop by our demo station to get a taste of the future of what your employees will touch, see, and hear in their Oracle Applications Cloud UX. Simplicity, mobility, and extensibility -- the three focus areas Oracle has identified for the future of the Oracle Applications Cloud UX -- are informing us as we watch the work world changing. Along with our customers, our team is doing heavy research and development on what this transformation means -- and what to do about it. If you need a lightweight user interface to complete important tasks efficiently and manipulate data elegantly through gestures on a tablet, come and see us at the OAUX demo station.

Want to go?
Where:  Moscone West Exhibition Hall — Oracle Demo Grounds
When:  Open during hall hours of operation

Who: HCM, ERP, and CX professionals

Tuesday Sep 15, 2015

Celebrating 5 years in Oracle's Mexico Development Center

By Sarahi Mireles, Oracle Applications User Experience

As you may know, Oracle has a couple Development Centers around the globe, and one of them is in Guadalajara, México. The Oracle Mexico Development Center, aka Oracle MDC (where I work), was 5 years old on Aug. 18, and the celebration was just as tech-y and fun as it can be for a development center.

Oracle staff hang out at the event before lunch.

Staff from the 9th floor of Oracle MDC have fun and celebrate 5 years of Oracle in Mexico (hurray!)

The celebration was split in two events, an open event called "Plug in" and a private event (just Oracle staff). Topics were related to what we love: Database, Cloud and, of course, User Experience. Some of the guest speakers were Hector García, who was chairman of the Computer Science Department at Stanford University; Javier Cordero, Managing Director of Oracle México; Jeremy Ashley, Group Vice President, Applications User Experience, and Erik Peterson, General Manager of Oracle MDC.

Hector García Molina starts with his talk, "Thoughts on the Future Recommendation Systems," with students and Oracle staff.

Andrew Mendelsohn, Executive Vice President, Database Server Technologies, gives a talk at the event.

Cheers at the conference. It was a really fun event. Geeks knows how to have fun!

Late in the afternoon, the real celebration started! We got to celebrate with all of our friends, colleagues, mates and the whole staff of Oracle MDC, and we all got to be in the anniversary picture of this awesome team, team Oracle!

Members of different teams (UX, UAE) hang out at the celebration.

This year, we all received this fun, handmade airplane as a gift to remember the 5th anniversary of Oracle MDC.

All of the crew of Oracle MDC pose in the annual photo taken at the event. 

If you want to know more about life at Oracle MDC, check our Facebook page! And if you're a student, don't miss our post about student visits on the Usable Apps blog.

Monday Sep 14, 2015

If you build it, they will come: Applications Cloud UX Tools sessions at OOW 2015

by Misha Vaughan, Applications User Experience

Greg Nerpouni
Greg Nerpouni, Senior Manager, Cloud UX Extensibility, showing off the latest capabilities of the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience

If you are an IT manager or business systems analyst trying to get a view into how the IT skill set is evolving, you will want to check out these sessions.

Greg Nerpouni, the shepherd of our Cloud UX Extensibility strategy and roadmap, and Tim Dubois -- standing in for our own Ultan O’Broin (@usableapps), who has spearheaded our PaaS4SaaS UX rapid development kit - will be sharing the road ahead.

By attending the sessions below, attendees will understand that admin personalization of the Oracle Sales Cloud, Oracle Service Cloud, and HCM Cloud user experiences include a range of tools. The spectrum runs from a simplified approach for rebranding the applications to match your company's culture and image and page-level admin personalization and extension to building your own simplified Cloud application in a platform as a service and integrating it with your Cloud application with PaaS4SaaS.

We will also be offering a preview of the soon-to-be released Release 10 Rapid Development Kit that @Ultan and @LancyS have been hard at work on.  There are some outstanding upgrades coming along with a surprise OAUX Advocate who has been helping to vet our partner enablement training material. You can expect to hear about an updated design patterns ebook, updated and easier to use wireframing tools, and a rockin' new code kit.

Tailoring Your User Experience in Oracle Sales Cloud and Oracle Service Cloud

Greg Nerpouni, Senior Manager, Applications User Experience, Oracle
Tim Dubois, Senior Director, User Experience Product and Program Management, Oracle
Session ID: CON9132
Date: Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015
2:30 - 3:15 p.m.
Moscone West—2000

Tailoring Your User Experience in the Oracle HCM Cloud 

Greg Nerpouni and Tim Dubois 

Session ID: CON8011
Date: Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015
3 - 3:45 p.m.
Palace—Gold Ballroom

Want the latest info?
Check the OAUX Events page for any last-minute changes and the full list of what you can see and do to soak up every bit of that Cloud UX goodness at OOW 2015.

Saturday Sep 05, 2015

Building your agenda for OOW? Find your Applications Cloud UX strategy sessions here

By Misha Vaughan, Applications User Experience

Photo by Rob Hernandez

If you are making plans to visit Oracle OpenWorld 2015 this year, make sure you block out some time to drop into the Applications Cloud product family user experience strategy sessions. Whether you work with HCM Cloud, CX Cloud, or ERP Cloud, in a quick hit, you’ll have the big-picture vision of where the design is headed.

You’ll learn how the themes of simplicity and mobility guide the roadmap for the Oracle user experience. Since this is the UX team, you will, of course, see demos of the next generation of user experiences.  Discover how the unified user experience moves consistently across devices to address the needs of the changing workforce, making the learning curve disappear while boosting participation and productivity for all users. These sessions will also show you the future of user experiences we consider most relevant to each product family. Take your chance to glimpse the future, and walk away inspired by the Oracle Applications Cloud.

Oracle Applications Cloud User Experiences: Trends and Strategy for FY2016
Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley), Group Vice President, Cloud Applications User Experience (UX), Oracle

Jake Kuramoto (@jkuramot), Senior Director, Emerging Technology

Jatin Thaker, Senior Director, Cloud Applications UX Development

Session ID: CON8419
Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2015
Time: 5:15 - 6 p.m.
Location: Moscone West—3002/3004

Oracle ERP Cloud User Experiences: Trends, Tailoring, and Strategy in FY2016

Jeremy Ashley, Oracle; 

Killian Evers (@keversca), Vice President, Applications User Experience for Sales and Service, Oracle; 

Aylin Uysal (@aylinuysal), Senior Director, Applications User Experience for HCM and ERP, Oracle

Session ID: CON9337
Date: Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015
12 - 12:45 p.m.
Moscone West—3005

Oracle Sales Cloud and Oracle Service Cloud User Experiences: Strategy for Mobility in FY2016
Jeremy Ashley, Killian Evers, and Jake Kuramoto, Oracle

Session: CON9219
Date: Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015
Time: 11 - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Moscone West—2016

Oracle HCM Cloud User Experiences: Trends and Strategy in FY2016
Presenters: Jeremy Ashley and Aylin Uysal
Session ID: CON8981
Date: Thursday, Oct. 29, 2015
Time: 2:30 - 3:15 p.m.
Location: Palace—Gold Ballroom

Want the latest info?
Check the OAUX Events page for any last-minute changes and the full list of what you can see and do to soak up every bit of that Cloud UX goodness at OOW 2015.

Saturday Aug 29, 2015

Emerging technologies and the 'Glance, Scan, Commit' design philosophy

By Jake Kuramoto (@jkuramot), Oracle Applications User Experience

Behind the Oracle user experience goals of designing for simplicity, mobility, and extensibility is a core design philosophy guiding the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team’s work in emerging technologies: “Glance, Scan, Commit.”

It nicely boils down a mountain of research and a design experience that shapes the concepts you can see from us.

The philosophy of “Glance, Scan, Commit” permeates all of our work in the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience, especially when investigating emerging technologies.

On your wrist

Some projects fit the “Glance, Scan, Commit” philosophy like a glove. The smaller screens of smartwatches like the Apple Watch and Android Wear watches require the distillation of content to fit.

Consumers demand glance and scan interactions on their wearable devices. The Oracle user experiences provide just the right amount of information on wearable devices and enable the ability to commit to more detail via the accompanying smartphone app.

On your ‘Things’

How else does the OAUX team apply the “Glance, Scan, Commit” design philosophy?

Let’s look at another example: The “Things” in the Internet of Things (IoT) represent a very broad category of Internet-connected devices, and generally speaking, consumers can’t rely on these things to have large screens, or even screens at all. This reduces the experience down to the lightest “glance” of proximity, and in some cases a sonic “glance.”

Sometimes we tap into the user’s context such as micro-location, provided by Bluetooth beacons or Near Field Communications (NFC) tags, to capture a small chunk of information. The “glance” here is the lightest touch of a beacon coming within range or a near field tag brushing up against a sensor.

In some cases, we use the philosophy to build sound “glances,” by capturing chunks of information that are then dictated by a personal assistant, like Amazon Echo. These are simple, small, discrete tasks powered by the human voice and Internet-connected devices.

For the eyes

We are also actively exploring and building visualizations to provide “glance” and “scan” experiences that allow users to consume report data quickly and easily, without poring over tables of information.

Video Storytelling, for example, permits complicated and detailed reports to be animated and delivered via audio and video. Think about the intricacies of a quarterly financial statement; video storytelling does the thinking for you by producing the information in very scannable, organized buckets of audio and video.

The “Glance, Scan, Commit” philosophy becomes even more important when building new experiences. As users are exposed to new experiences, data from the Oracle Applications Cloud provides a constant that helps them embrace these new technologies. Delivering the data in a particular way, using designs shaped by “Glance, Scan, Commit,” increases that consistency.

If the Oracle user experience can provide customers with the information they need to do work every day, in a meaningful way, then new technologies are tools to increase user participation, not barriers.

In the not-so-distant past, “walk up and use” was the bar for experiences, meaning that the interactions should be easy enough to support use without any prior knowledge or training. The user would simply walk up and use it.

The rise of smartphones, ubiquitous connectivity, and IoT -- and the emerging technology that enables their use -- make our new goal as close to simply “walk up” as possible. Workers can use the system without interacting with it directly, because context collected from phones, combined with smart things around them and enterprise data in the cloud, allow the environment to pass useful information to users without any interactions. This removes more barriers and also works to increase user participation. The more users are engaging with an enterprise system, the more data goes in – and the more value our customers can get out of their investment.

And that, in the end, is the overarching goal of the Oracle user experience.

See it for yourself

If you want to put hands-on what we do, we will be at Oracle OpenWorld participating in the OAUX Cloud Exchange.  Attendance requires a non-disclosure agreement, so please register early.

Thursday Aug 20, 2015

More Oracle UX fun planned for Oracle OpenWorld 2015

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

In case you missed it, the OAUX team has lined up a few events for attendees at Oracle OpenWorld 2015. But now we’ve got a few more in the works. Add them to your list now!

Tour the new Oracle Cloud User Experience Lab

Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley), OAUX Group Vice President and designer of the new Cloud User Experience Lab at HQ in Redwood City, Calif.

The OAUX team will be offering usability lab tours at our state-of-the-art Cloud User Experience Lab during Oracle OpenWorld 2015 on Thursday and Friday, Oct. 29-30, 2015. Here, Oracle customers and partners can get a preview of Oracle’s newest user experiences in Oracle HCM Cloud, Oracle Sales Cloud, and Oracle ERP Cloud. Plan to spend four hours (including free round-trip transportation from San Francisco) watching demonstrations of how we developed software based on the most exciting emerging technology.

Space is limited, so sign up in advance by sending an email to Alisa Hamai.

A customer feedback session on a mobile app takes place at the on-site lab.

Photo by Rob Hernandez

Visit the Onsite Product Usability Testing Lab @ OOW 2015

You won’t want to miss this. When you visit this lab Oct. 26-28, 2015, you can participate in a fun one-on-one usability feedback session or get involved in a great focus group. This is an exclusive opportunity for you to contribute to and influence application design and direction by offering feedback while test-driving Oracle’s next-generation applications. Your feedback can directly affect the existing and future usability of the Oracle Applications Cloud and help us continue to develop applications that are intuitive and easy to use. The OAUX team will only be onsite for three days during OpenWorld 2015, so reserve your spot now at this private event!

Monday Aug 17, 2015

Saying Farewell to a UX Icon: Oracle bids adieu to Dr. Joe Dumas

By Sarah Smart, Applications User Experience

We’re sorry to report the doctor is out. Dr. Joe Dumas, aka “Dr. Usability,” retired from his consulting role with Oracle recently to pursue other projects.

Above: Oracle honored Dr. Dumas’ contributions to usability at a retirement luncheon.
Photos by Rob Hernandez

As the “father of usability,” Dr. Dumas has worked with Lotus, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, and Digital. His several books seek to demystify user experience methods. His 1993 book, "A Practical Guide to Usability Testing," is considered the Bible of user experience, and he has also authored dozens of articles on usability. He is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Usability Studies, and in 2012 he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the User Experience Professionals Association. He continues to teach and consult, and user experience experts the world over continue to find inspiration in his work. At Oracle, Dr. Dumas conducted the company’s very first research on the partner ecosystem and enabling partners to build well-designed solutions. When Oracle moved into the cloud, he continued that research helping to refine, tailor, and deliver a successful program teaching partners how to design and build their own simplfied UIs for the Cloud. “In industry terms, we call this PaaS4SaaS -- or Platform-as-a-Service for Software-as-a-Service,” said Misha Vaughan, Senior Director, Oracle Applications User Experience.

Dr. Dumas joined Oracle’s team as a user interface consultant in 2000 after almost 20 years of user experience research and immediately made an impression on Jeremy Ashley, Group Vice President of the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team. “With usability, you don’t know if they’re going to be very serious or not,” he said, adding that he found Dr. Dumas to be dedicated, knowledgeable, and very funny and he heavily influenced his own management style. He educated (“never lectured,” Ashley stressed) and mentored key OAUX team members, who have succeeded within and outside of Oracle, including Vaughan. “My career has taken a very non-traditional path, but a path that has been very successful for Oracle,” she said. “Joe provided a sounding board for me each step along the way to make decisions that were innovative, where there was no roadmap, and where courage and creativity were required.”

Catherine Courage, Senior Vice President, Customer Experience at DocuSign, who met Dr. Dumas in the first year of her first job at Citrix, said, “My manager said, ‘I think Joe would be a great mentor.’ I thought, ‘Mentor? Why do I need a mentor?’ I quickly learned why.” Ashley said, “It wasn’t just the contribution of his deep knowledge; it was the approach and attitude he took to it as well.”

Misha Vaughan, Joe Dumas, Anna Wichansky, Jeremy Ashley
Above: Dr. Misha Vaughan, Dr. Dumas, Dr. Anna Wichansky and Group Vice President Ashley pose for a photo at the luncheon.

He also exerted a guiding hand on former Oracle usability engineer Mick McGee, now CEO of EchoUser. “I aggressively charged forward [in usability testing] and was taken to task a bit to explain what I was doing,” he said. “… Out of that I was asked to talk to Joe about what I was doing and how it could be more pragmatically applied. Joe is a bit of a rebel himself who was/is constantly thinking of new usability methods, so we very quickly got along very well.” The two were involved in what they called the “Underground Research Team.” McGee said, “We used our user experience toolkit to experiment on ourselves, researching how we could better do research and design. … We worked on lots of fun new research and design techniques that I still utilize to this day.”

Some of Dr. Dumas’ other projects involved interviewing developers to understand the user experience design pattern requirements (available through the Usable Apps website) and answering the question of whether a new user-interface design made its users more productive. His calming, level influence came second only to his methodical approach to research: Getting the most accurate results depended on advance planning and being as gentle as possible with the experiment to avoid exerting his own will on the tests and their outcomes. “The attitude and approach will always have an effect on the result,” Ashley said.

Ashley described an early incident with the good doctor as putting everything into perspective. “He said, ‘The current results are what they are. Just because people don’t agree now doesn’t mean the outlook is bleak … You don’t have to be so reactionary. You have time to understand what’s important and what to do about it. Calm down, and stick to actual facts.’” McGee echoed this admiration of Dr. Dumas’ character: “[He is] always easygoing, always able to quickly drive you toward the most important thoughts. … I remember lots of conversations where Joe would listen, then say, ‘Well,’ and away we’d go,” McGee said.

“Any project, initiative, or idea that I brought to him always starts with a long pause while he considers the problem in front of him,” Vaughan said. “Then comes the zinger, the question or comment that he then puts in front of you that forces you to reconsider your assumptions or approach and make it 100% better. That insight, that perspective, and that approach are what I try to model my own approach on.” But Dr. Dumas did a fair amount of receiving input as well. “You've never met a better listener,” Courage said. “He's patient, calm and asks questions to help you solve your own problems.”

Joe and Martie
Dr. Joe Dumas, with his longtime supporter, guidance counselor, problem-solver, and wife, Martie.

Dr. Dumas leaves lasting memories at Oracle of not just his work in the usability field but also his leadership and generous spirit. “He always had the attitude of a multiplier,” Ashley said. “The ‘Father of Usability’ may be a fun nickname, but there’s a whole lot of truth there,” McGee said. “But I think the bigger legacy of Joe is all the people he’s generously offered his time to throughout his career to make them better professionals and people. Every time I talk about Joe, I hear of someone else or some other time he helped someone in whatever they were doing or thinking about.” Courage said, “He has touched so many in our field directly or through his publications of editorial work. He is a pioneer in our field and certainly has earned the title ‘father of usability.’ ... He has helped shape, form and guide my career over the past decade and a half and I am forever grateful.”

Friday Aug 07, 2015

Get a look at the future Oracle cloud user experience at Oracle OpenWorld 2015

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

Are you all set for Oracle OpenWorld 2015? Even if you think you're already booked for the event, you'll want to squeeze in a chance to experience the future of the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) -- and maybe even make a few UX buddies along the way -- with these sessions, demos, and speakers. We loved OOW 2014, and couldn't wait to get ready for this year.

Lucas Jellema, AMIS & Oracle ACE Director (left), Anthony Lai, Oracle (center), Jake Kuramoto, Oracle (right) at OOW 2015 during our strategy day
Photos by Rob Hernandez

Save the Date: Oracle Applications Cloud User Experience Strategy & Roadmap Day
The OAUX team is hosting a one-day interactive seminar ahead of Oracle OpenWorld 2015 to get select partners and customers ready for the main event. This session will focus on Oracle’s forward-looking investment in the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience. 

You'll get the opportunity to share feedback about the Oracle Applications Cloud UX in the real world. How is our vision lining up with what needs to happen in your market?

Speaking of our vision, we’ll start the session with the big-picture perspective on trends and emerging technologies we are watching and describe their anticipated effect on your end-user experiences. Attendees will take a deeper dive into specific focus areas of the Oracle Applications Cloud and learn about our impending investments in the user experience including HCM Cloud, CX Cloud, and ERP Cloud. 

The team will also share with you the plans for Cloud user experience tools, including extensibility and user experience in the Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS4SaaS) world (get the latest here). We'll close out the day with a "this-town-ain't-big-enough" event that was extremely popular last year: the ACE Director Speaker Showdown. 

Want to go?
When: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015
Where: Oracle Conference Center, Room 202, 350 Oracle Pkwy, Redwood City, CA 94065

Who:  Applications Cloud partners and customers (especially HCM, CX, or ERP Cloud), Oracle ACE Directors, and Oracle-internal Cloud thought leaders in product development, sales, or Worldwide Alliances and Channels

Register Now!
To get on our waitlist.
Active confidential disclosure agreement required.

chloe and mindi
Chloe Arnold and Mindi Cummins, Oracle, during OOW 2014 at the OAUX Cloud Exchange

Save the Date: Oracle Applications User Experience Cloud Exchange
Speakers and discussions are all well and good, but what is the future of the Oracle Applications UX really like? The OAUX team is providing a daylong, demo-intensive networking event at Oracle OpenWorld 2015 to show you what the results of Oracle's UX strategy will look like.

User experience is a key differentiator for the Oracle Applications Cloud, and Oracle is investing heavily in its future. Come see what our recently released and near-release user experiences look like, and check out our research and development user experience concepts, then let us know what you think.

These experience experiments for the modern user will delve even deeper into the OAUX team’s guiding principles of simplicity, mobility, and extensibility and come from many different product areas. This is cutting-edge stuff, folks. And, since we know you're worn out from these long, interactive days, this event will also feature refreshments.

Want to go?
When: Monday, October 26, 2015
Where: InterContinental Hotel, San Francisco
Who: Oracle Applications Cloud Partners, Customers, Oracle ACEs and ACE Directors, Analysts, Oracle-internal Cloud thought leaders in product development, sales, or Worldwide Alliances and Channels

Register Now!
To get on our waitlist.
Active confidential disclosure agreement required.

Monday Jun 22, 2015

Consistency? Check. Context? Check. More convenience, better participation in the mobile user experience? Oh, yes!

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

Editor’s note: This is the third in a three-part series on the current strategy behind the Oracle user experience and the ideas that drive that strategy forward. 

In the first part of this series, we talked about transitioning  our three-part Oracle Applications Cloud story -- Simplicity, Mobility, Extensibility -- to an increasingly mobile enterprise. In the second part, we discussed how innovation  drives the evolution of our user experience design philosophy, “Glance, Scan, Commit.” But now we want to dig into specifics and tell you how Oracle’s research and development team is designing a mobile user experience that you won’t want to miss.

First, realize that the platform is no longer the operating system, nor is it a single device, said Jeremy Ashley, Group Vice President for the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team. Think of the cloud as the platform instead. It doesn’t matter what device you use, only that you get the right information at the right time. Oracle is designing a user experience that is consistent across devices and built with a single code line. This helps us to achieve what Ashley calls “session portability,” in which a user who is migrating to various devices throughout the day still sees a consistent user experience that delivers the data he needs on command. 

If you consider what an enterprise application is, you see that it’s basically forms and reports, Ashley said. You put data in a form in the database, and you pull data out of the database in a report. 

Contextual information helps shape the user experience by automatically filling in as much of that input as possible so that you don’t have to. Ashley said how well we do the context analysis determines what the user gets out it. If you have lunch with someone and want to file an expense report for it, you input that person’s name and the cost of the lunch. The context engine can pull from your calendar, your contact list, and more to fill out the form for you so that when you come back to finish the job later, the form may already have the date, location, name (if meeting often), company (if this is a top lead), and the amount. 

The context engine understands important relationships around the person and can fill in as much as possible, Ashley said, saving you time and increasing convenience.

Convenience and Participation
With any device, going forward, there is no killer app itself, Ashley said. There will, however, be a killer feature: convenience. How much effort does a user need to expend to participate in something? How many steps are required? “What we want to do in any task is continually reduce effort,” Ashley said. 

“Convenience is the ability to capture information and keep on moving; it’s all about keeping the person moving,” Ashley said. Consistency decreases the learning curve and enables you to be productive more quickly. Contextual information fills in as much of the input as possible, taking some of the busy work out. 

“Increased convenience decreases the barrier that the user has in their useful and effective participation in the system,” Ashley said. And increasing participation in the application so that our customers are getting the most out of their investment is always the goal behind the Oracle use experience. Participation can’t be assumed; the OAUX team has to work for it, and we know it.

Visualizations, Micro-Transactions, and More on the Horizon
Visualizations are one way Oracle Cloud Applications can increase participation by maximizing convenience. The standard enterprise application takes the user to a very limited level of BI data: It shows the information (for example, a decline in sales), and it might provide an infographic, which could offer a bit of the reasons behind such a decline. 

Oracle President Thomas Kurian, left, unveils forecast shaper, a visualization shown inside Oracle Sales Cloud, at Oracle OpenWorld 2014.

A visualization should be easy to use. These visitors at the Oracle usability labs instinctively know how to use forecast shaper.

The forecast shaper, above, shows not only the information and the reasons behind it but also specific steps the user can take to influence this data in the future. The design is so intuitive that even a child knows how to use it – hesitation about participating in the app isn’t even part of the equation.

The OAUX team has also designed several tasks based around micro-transactions, which are the first step we design in the “Glance, Scan, Commit” philosophy. For example, suppose someone is going to his job at Best Buy. A message pops up on his smartphone or smartwatch to ask if he is starting a 9 a.m. shift, and he can press a button to say yes. Now he’s clocked in. That very specific and limited action is complete, with only minimal effort on his part. 

With new technology, such as smartwatches and devices that enable the Internet of Things (IoT), sheer convenience makes participation more likely, so naturally, it’s part of our research and development. Seamlessly moving across devices, pulling in important contextual information, and increasing both the convenience and the participation of our users is Oracle’s charter for the Applications Cloud user experience. 

Check in with us during Oracle OpenWorld in October 2015 to see our latest demos using new technology. 

To Learn More Now

Tuesday Jun 16, 2015

Big-picture innovation on the path to a better user experience

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

Editor’s note: This is the second in a three-part series on the current strategy behind the Oracle user experience and the ideas that drive that strategy forward. Find the first post here.

You’ve seen how Oracle has deepened simplicity in the Oracle Applications Cloud with the simplified UI across Releases 7, 8, and 9, and you’ve heard us talk on this blog about the “Glance, Scan, Commit” design philosophy that guides the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team. 

You also may have heard us talk about developing this persistent user experience across all devices, setting the theme of mobility alongside the theme of simplicity. We’ve seen success with these approaches, and user experience is now widely recognized as a differentiator for Oracle. But these themes are only one part of the story. 

What inspires us? How do we move the evolution of the Oracle user experience along? We get there through innovation and the study of emerging technology.

Our studies recently have focused on wearables, and developing ways they can evolve the Oracle user experience. 

What is innovation?
In its purest form, innovation is to make something better than it was before, said OAUX Group Vice President Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley). He calls innovation a process of constant refinement, not a single killer idea from one visionary. Finding a better way to do something takes time and effort, he adds: “It takes work -- observation, understanding, the ability to see what is important about something. The simplified approach is how we attack that.” 

The OAUX team approaches innovation from two sources, Ashley said: 
  • new technology or materials that we can use to see opportunities for enterprise potential
  • research to identify a pattern or trend that gives us insight
UX designers on the team then leverage the information from these sources to build something interesting and useful for the enterprise world.

It’s just as important to understand when you don’t need innovation, Ashley said. The pencil, for example, would be hard to improve. It’s tried and true and has been around for 500 years (even the mechanical version has existed for almost 200). 

But what about the purpose of the pencil -- namely, to capture information? Ashley points out that the biggest competition for the user experience of enterprise applications is the pencil and the notebook. The latest designs of the simplified UI in Release 9 aim to replace the pencil and the notebook. If the designs show good innovation, capturing the right information will be easier, more elegant, maybe even more beautiful and more enjoyable to use.

An example of innovation
People have long used clocks to tell time. The Swiss, seeing a need for innovation to make the clock portable and accessible, created the pocket watch in the 16th century. But even the pocket watch was not up to the task in World War I, the first mechanized war where large-scale coordination of human forces was necessary. As time became less flexible and soldiers did not have the luxury of being able to fish a pocket watch out of a jacket, the wristwatch was born.

Jeremy Ashley demonstrates “the real estate of the wrist.”

Today, we have even more options for making good use of “the real estate of the wrist,” as Ashley calls it. The smartwatch, for example, helps us get what’s relevant directly and conveniently. Innovation has taken us from one level (the need to know the time) to another (the ability to wear the time on our wrists). Innovation has brought the visualization of the time and the ability to know it more quickly and conveniently.

How Oracle innovates

Innovation plays an important role on the OAUX team. We have to understand our changing environment to know how to adapt, and we put a lot of passion into understanding what is right, Ashley said. “Just because we can do something, doesn’t mean we should.” We need to ask ourselves, is this applicable, and does it make sense?

Oracle dedicates a team to researching emerging technologies. This is how we can accelerate our rate of innovation in the Oracle user experience and drive forward the evolution of the Oracle Applications Cloud.

One example of research for the OAUX team encompasses beacons and the Internet of Things (IoT). Beacons capture information more easily than a pencil and notebook. They fill in forms for you -- no need to go in and do it yourself. We research IoT similarly to find ways to get beacons to talk about themselves and interact with each other. 

From Google beacons to Raspberry Pis, we've already evolved from a user experience of “walk up and use.” Now, the experience should only require walking up, Ashley said. The OAUX team is looking for -- and designing -- that walk-up interface in researching and developing other emerging technologies that could help drive the next generation of the Oracle user experience.

The goal of our research is not just being able to get notifications from an app designed for the mobile user on a wearable device. Oracle is pursuing an all-encompassing approach of increasing participation. We want our applications to be so intuitive and easy to use that you don’t even notice the system behind your system. 

From a notification in the “Glance” phase to a series of translators (Apple Watch, Android phone, etc.), which filter to your device and offer a way to scan your work, all of Oracle’s user experience projects are based on innovation and understanding what is important about something and how it can help improve your efficiency and ability to get your work done. 

To Learn More

Saturday Jun 06, 2015

Going Beyond the Notification: Transitioning With the Evolving Enterprise

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

Editor’s note: This is the first in a three-part series on the current strategy behind the Oracle user experience and the ideas that drive that strategy forward.

You may have read about the “Glance, Scan, Commit” design philosophy that informs innovation in the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team’s research. This is part of our Oracle Applications Cloud story on simplicity, mobility, and extensibility.

You might be wondering: When does this innovation trickle down to my company’s Oracle applications system and affect me? And how much is that going to cost?

Put aside your pessimism. The answer is: faster than you think. Here’s why.  

The Transition
The whole enterprise industry has been undergoing major transitions, according to Group Vice President Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley), leader of the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team. The workforce is changing; no longer confined to certain generations and geographical locations, a team of employees can span many age groups, and each member can work from anywhere in the world.

Group Vice President Jeremy Ashley

It’s also becoming more mobile, meaning one employee in an office in New York can work seamlessly with another on a mobile phone inside a taxi in Abu Dhabi.

As Oracle’s customers go through these transitions, so do we. Oracle is taking the time and making the investment to understand the needs this transition brings, Ashley said. But we know our customers already have made a huge investment in Oracle Applications, so even in the midst of transitioning, we are building our platform based on 100 percent Oracle technology. What’s new is the way that we are designing the user experience.

The themes of simplicity and mobility are guiding us as we continue to develop a simplified UI and explore emerging technology for ways to improve the Oracle user experience. We want to reach beyond the standard notification and visualization while maintaining the technology with which our customers are already familiar.

That means that the investment you already made is still solid. And the integration problems you might be expecting if you want to tap into our simplified user experience – well, it’s far less complicated than you might think.

Our Inspiration
We know that we need to anticipate what’s coming so that we can respond appropriately, Ashley said. We want to take advantage of emerging technology and trends and develop a strategic approach to the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience that helps users increase their productivity and makes participation in using the system a no-brainer.  

To figure out how to anticipate the needs of our users, Oracle invests in its own research on industry, innovators, and media. The OAUX team looks at where companies are spending their money and time, where people are putting in sweat equity to get things started, and the way the media is influencing how people perceive technology.

Here’s what we’ve learned in our research about current innovation trends:

Connectivity: We expect to be connected 99 percent of the time, and we expect our devices to work in any location.
Devices: We want to get work done regardless of the device we are using, and we need all of our devices to be convenient. The laptop is no longer the Swiss army knife it used to be, so we now use the device that best fits a particular task.
Interactions: We want to see what’s essential immediately and understand what we need to do about it now with small, quick, casual interactions.

Oracle’s approach
The future of enterprise applications revolves around Oracle’s simplified UI design philosophy of “Glance, Scan, Commit.” An application should allow the user to glance at something and make a decision about it, but then offer an array of active choices to the user (scan) without forcing her to commit to entering the larger system at that moment. This level is a happy medium of personalized detail and encompasses the 10% of tasks that 90% of users are doing 90% of the time.

The Oracle user experience strategy has been successful because of the focus on simplification. Because we’ve built everything on Oracle technology, users don’t have to start over in their investment with Oracle (learning new software, adapting to new patterns, etc.), and neither do we. As we continue to refine the user experience, always keeping in mind how best to use the Oracle database, middleware, and apps technology, we look at actual changes that organizations are making and rethink how Oracle products may be able to support those trends.

There are no integration and capability issues with this approach, Ashley said. With a new Oracle release, customers shouldn’t have to start over with a new learning process or investment.

The point is, transition doesn’t have to be painful.

We've covered simplicity in a big way in the Oracle user experience with our current releases, and we've been working on mobility in a big way, which you'll see with the coming ones.

In this rendering of infolets from Release 10, we show how a design that embraces simplicity also works for our design theme of mobility. Infolets work across devices.

Look for our next post soon on how we define innovation and what that means for the Oracle user experience.

To Learn More

Monday May 25, 2015

Laying out the Oracle Applications User Experience Strategy for Partners in Beijing

By Misha Vaughan, Oracle Applications User Experience

After our trip to Singapore, the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team completed a similar series of briefing and feedback events in Beijing in May.

We were joined by more than 90 attendees, including Applications Cloud partners from Greater China hosted by Peggy Zhu, and from Korea hosted by TK Hwang, along with the local Platform Solution Center team lead by Mike Su and a handful of top-notch Oracle Solution Consultants.

We kicked off the day with Bessie Yuan, General Manager HCM for Greater China, setting the context about Oracle’s position in the cloud business.  

We then shifted gears into a presentation by Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley), Group Vice President, Applications User Experience, on the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience strategy and roadmap.  To revisit the main talking points, check out the free Oracle Applications User Experience Trends and Strategy e-book.

Shy Meei Show, our host along with TK, led a lively question-and-answer session between our partners and Ashley. 

Q:  In China and Korea, Microsoft and Amazon are being very aggressive, doing very aggressive marketing, and we want to know how user experience is competitive. How will Oracle compete? 

JA: To compete on user experience, Oracle must work from the strength it has. They cannot do what Oracle does. Only Oracle can offer a combined stack. This powers the user experience. I mentioned context before. You cannot offer the customer this power without it.  Also, productivity benefits come with being one vendor.  

Q: What key messages on user experience can I take back to C-level executives?

JA: Simplicity. For some companies, design is seen as a luxury. When they tackle a new project with a new design, it often fails. These innovations often fail because they are too ambitious. Our approach is to simplify, because that is a way to be successful on an innovation project. 

Q: In Korea, we are still involved in a lot of on-premise implementations. Do you have a plan?

JA: If you look at the very latest versions of PeopleSoft and E-Business Suite, you will see the uptake of our simplified UI design patterns. However, the timing and release of user experience enhancements is up to the SVPs. 

Q: What ADF (Application Development Framework) version and Alta design patterns will be available?

JA: Alta is design at the component level – an input box, a table. They are the components we use to design and build our apps. Alta is the latest version of ADF.  ADF and Alta are the parts. The cloud user experience, and the simplified UI in particular, are the design approach you will see in our Cloud Apps. Release 10 is where you will start to see use of these components, using ADF

Q: How do you choose what we invest in, in new technology? 

JA: We are enduringly human and we go through particular work patterns. There is the bit we contribute intellectually to work. And there is work we do because of human behavior. For example, many people choose to do their most creative work in the morning. So the most effective technologies will be the ones that support human work patterns. That's what we look to. 

Attendees then explored Applications Cloud user experience demo stations, including:
  • HCM Cloud
  • Sales Cloud
  • Service Cloud
  • ERP Cloud
  • Cloud extensibility 
  • Platform-as-a-Service for SaaS (also known as PaaS4SaaS)
  • Emerging Technologies including wearables & visualizations
Greg Nerpouni (@gnerpouni), Senior Manager of Cloud UX Extensibility, said he was impressed with the sheer number and attentiveness of the attendees.  “The extensibility and PaaS4SaaS stations were mobbed by our Chinese and Korean partners, especially when they realized the combined power of our extensibility and PaaS4SaaS capabilities.  At the extensibility station, they saw tangible ways to increase end user participation and overall success of their cloud rollout for our mutual customers.  And at the PaaS4SaaS station, they saw immediate value in being able to leverage the UX rapid development kit to emulate Oracle’s user experience in their own PaaS implementations - and seamlessly integrate their PaaS applications into Oracle Cloud Applications.” 

Deep-dive sessions on the second day focused on Applications Cloud UX tools for implementation specialists, along with pre-sales messaging.  Led by Ultan O’Broin (@usableapps), Killian Evers, and Anthony Lai, the goal was to raise awareness with partners of how they needed to begin developing in-house skills around: 

O’Broin said partners engaged in an intense way with the PaaS4SaaS UX enablement message, were eager to know more and make things happen for their Cloud business in a way that would see them building smart, secure, reusable value-add Cloud solutions of simplicity for customers in a matter of hours.  “Our APAC partners also recognized the huge potential of PaaS with SaaS. With 95% of our products lifting off into the Cloud by OOW15, the PaaS4SaaS UX business propositions could not be ignored by any partners keen to grow their Cloud business, sure, but any partner who also demands to be seen and recognized as a leader and influencer in the ecosystem.”

Want to find out more?
Check out the UsableApps partner page for Applications Cloud.

Friday May 22, 2015

Showing the Oracle Applications User Experience Roadmap to Oracle's Asia Partners

By Misha Vaughan, Oracle Applications User Experience

After months of planning, the Oracle Applications User Experience (OAUX) team has completed a series of packed events to update Oracle ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) partners on the Applications Cloud user experience strategy in Singapore in May.  

We owe a huge thank you to our hosts: Check Yang Ang, Senior Director, Alliances & Channels, Asia Pacific; and Shy Meei Siow, Cloud and Business Analytics, Alliances & Channels, Asia Pacific. It is always a privilege to work with colleagues with such great event vision and execution.

We kicked off events with Kang Song Lim, Managing Director of Singapore Partners, setting the context about Oracle’s position in the cloud business.  He focused on: 
  • Our momentum worldwide in the cloud, including Mark Hurd’s comments on reaching $200 million in annual recurring revenue in the cloud and closing in on being the largest service provider in the cloud.  
  • Complete SaaS wins the deal, and players who have the most complete SaaS suite will win.  Oracle now has every category from HCM to ERP to CX, and according to Mark Hurd, expects to have 95% of its products in the cloud this year.  We are either a leader or competing to be a leader in the space. We are the only vendor to offer IaaS to PaaS to SaaS. 
  • Partners have an opportunity in the customization, integration, and extension space for customers, who are looking for support from trusted advisors.

He then shifted gears into a question-and-answer format with Jeremy Ashley (@jrwashley), Group Vice President, Applications User Experience, before the OAUX team opened up a series of demo stations for partners to explore.

KS: This is the first time we have seen a team this big come to the region, especially from development.  What are you hoping to accomplish?

JA: The investment in cloud user experiences is a corporate-level initiative.  We know we have to get the word out very quickly.  Oracle is going through a transition, as are our customers, so we need to get out in front very quickly.

KS: The entire approach we have taken for this user experience team and the conversation we want for you [our partners] to have with our customers is quite different now.

JA: It’s a very different perspective.   If you look at the old enterprise software side, it was about quantity, it was about the number of features you could put in front of a customer.  

Just because we have all those capabilities does not mean we have to show all those capabilities firsthand.  If you show a product and every feature is there, you are showing how much power it has, yes, but the performance will slow and the experience will be intimidating.  It’s not that we have gotten rid of features; we have a very particular philosophy to allow customers to remove and control the performance and complexity of the cloud user experience.

KS:  We have a very different setup in terms of engaging partners. What do you want the audience to take away about this afternoon?

JA: You will come away seeing the pride, time, and effort we have put into these products.  You will see the quality and care that we have put in the products.  As you go through, pick up the product, use it, and ask questions, and share your feedback. 

Ashley then talked about the Oracle Applications User Experience trends and strategy. Get the high points of that presentation from our free e-book.

 The afternoon was a whirlwind where we got to show off our Applications Cloud user experiences for:
HCM Cloud 
Sales Cloud
Service Cloud
ERP Cloud
Cloud extensibility 
Platform-as-a-Service for SaaS (also known as PaaS4SaaS)
Emerging Technologies including wearables & visualizations

Day 2 brought a well-received deep-dive session, for implementation specialists of the Oracle Applications Cloud user experience sales and toolkit capabilities. Led by Ultan O’Broin (@usableapps), and Greg Nerpouni (@gnerpouni), the goal of the day was to raise awareness with partners of how they needed to begin developing in-house skills around: 
Nerpouni, described the event this way: “It was obvious that they enjoyed hearing our messaging around extensibility, but they were even more appreciative of learning the tangible ways to apply Oracle’s tools to deliver results.”  

O’Broin said that partners were immediately drawn to PaaS4SaaS UX enablement as the cloud differentiator and their competitive must-have. “Backed by a live demo of a simplified UI deployed to JCS and with wisdom of the cloud from Debra Lilley, Steve Miranda, and Mark Sunday and others still resonating in the audience, the energy, enthusiasm and eagerness I felt made me think we'd hit the mark,” he added. 

Want to find out more?

Check out the UsableApps page for Applications Cloud partners.

Lab tours put spotlight on 'simple' in Oracle's simplified UI

Monday May 18, 2015

Customer Connect: Oracle’s online community for Applications Cloud customers

By Sarah Smart, Applications User Experience

When you have a question about Oracle Applications Cloud, where do you turn? If you don’t want to navigate a help line phone tree or wait an entire weekend for a response, try asking the Oracle Applications Customer Connect community.

What is Customer Connect?
Customer Connect is more like a forum than a help desk, a nontechnical version of Oracle Support. Members all over the world can collaborate, share ideas, and ask questions of other Oracle Applications Cloud customers -- validating their own user experiences -- and membership requires no more than being an approved customer. 

"It is an exclusive community for members to connect with other members and discuss issues or share ideas. They can also get exclusive previews and look at other areas they may have not purchased yet," said Senior Director Katrine Haugerud, Oracle Applications Development, who initiated Customer Connect in 2012 at the request of a handful of new Applications Cloud customers.

Despite its relative newness, the platform has also been open to Oracle’s key implementation partners and those who have licensed cloud services since spring 2014. “Partners are really good collaborators with the community," Haugerud said. “I think [opening membership to partners] is a great addition.”

The Customer Connect home page puts forums, news, upcoming events, and even links to Oracle Support at your fingertips.

How does Oracle leverage this community for user experience? 
The platform offers special benefits to Senior Manager Gozel Aamoth, Applications User Experience, and her team. When they want to recruit participants for an Oracle HCM Cloud usability lab, for example, they can contact the applicable customers directly through Customer Connect without spamming the rest of the members. "No other forum can generate so many cloud customers," she said. "I love that I can reach out to that specific group of users." 

Updates and networking are also objectives of the platform. Members see an up-to-date calendar of upcoming UX events, webinars showing new features, and so on. "Members know when they have the opportunity to hear from Oracle product managers," Aamoth said. 

They also can reach out to other members in their industry, for example, to set up their own network. "This is the perfect way for customers to stay connected and understand what's happening with the release or product they own," Haugerud said.

How can a customer stay up-to-date on the latest Applications Cloud user experience news using Customer Connect?

Here’s just a sampling of some of the webinars you can access as a Customer Connect member: 

How do I get connected?
Interested in leveraging the benefits of Customer Connect? Click here to register.

Wednesday May 13, 2015

Summer is in the air (at least in California), and OHUG 2015 is just around the corner

By Gozel Aamoth, Oracle Applications User Experience 

OHUG is extremely excited to make its return to fabulous Las Vegas for the OHUG 2015 Global Conference! The OAUX team hopes you’ll make a stop at OHUG before your pack your bags for a summer vacation.

Taking place June 8-11, 2015, at The Mirage Hotel, the event will offer attendees various opportunities to build long-lasting business relationships while delving deeper into Oracle's extremely valuable product lines of Oracle E-Business Suite, PeopleSoft, and HCM Cloud.

Interested in joining OAUX at the OHUG 2015 Global Conference? Here’s what we have lined up.

Have you built your agenda yet? Don't miss out on the OAUX presentation “Oracle HCM Cloud User Experiences: Designed for Work Styles across Devices.”


Aylin Uysal (@aylinuysal) Jake Kuramoto (@jkuramot)

The Oracle Applications Cloud user experience design strategy is about simplicity, mobility, and extensibility. Learn how we are addressing mobility by delivering the best user experience for each device as you access your enterprise data in the cloud. 

Our devices are a tool to access data, which changes our approach to user experience. We can’t think of mobile devices as different platforms anymore. The cloud is our platform now; it is the way we share enterprise information with users across devices. At Oracle, we design the user experience so that the right amount of information appears on each device -- whether it's a laptop, tablet, smartphone, or smartwatch. While we tailor the user experience to the demands of the devices, we also design core elements to maintain consistency across the experience.

In this session, we’ll also talk about the future of enterprise experiences and the latest trends we see emerging in the consumer market. Come to get a glimpse and be inspired by the future of Oracle HCM Cloud.

Session ID: 15387
Tuesday, June 9, 2015 
Time: 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm 
Location: See session schedule

User Feedback Sessions: Get Involved!

While this conference offers many opportunities to learn about Oracle HCM products and roadmap, networking and just to hear what’s new in the Oracle world, if you have not participated before, check out this exclusive event. It’s been part of the OHUG Conference since 2007, and every year, more than 100+ attendees sign up to participate in the user feedback sessions.

By popular demand, we’re happy to announce that we will be coordinating user feedback sessions, offering customers and partners the opportunity to test-drive Oracle’s next generation of HCM applications! Have you done this before? If not, what are you waiting for? Sign up today, and get a chance to work with Oracle user experience professionals and be part of Oracle HCM product development. We are offering sessions for employees, managers, learning admins, HR specialists, business analysts, HR IT, HR executives and many more. 

Tuesday, June 9 and Wednesday, June 10
RSVP: Sign up here (advance sign-up is required)
Location: Conference room Bermuda B

After we receive your completed RSVP form, we'll contact you to confirm a time and date for participation. If you have questions, contact

*Participation requires that your company or organization have a Customer Participation Confidentiality Agreement (CPCA) on file. If your company or organization does not have this, we will start the process of getting one.

Visit OAUX at Oracle booth in the exhibition hall, and learn about our research for smartwatches in the enterprise.

The wearable-technology space is currently focused on smartwatches. We’re excited by Apple’s announcement about their smartwatch, and we’re even more thrilled to show you our proof-of-concept glance designs for the Oracle Applications Cloud on the Apple Watch and more. We want to hear your reaction! 

If you’d like to learn more about our current research on smartwatches in the enterprise, read this blog post by Ultan O’Broin (@usableapps).

Not planning to attend but still want the latest on the Oracle user experience? Get a strategic look at the user experience roadmap for the Oracle Applications Cloud in this free ebook. Download your copy today!

For more information on OAUX’s participation in upcoming events, please visit the Usable Apps events website.

Monday Mar 23, 2015

Helping Partners Compete on User Experience with the Oracle Applications Cloud

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

When a customer comes to you and asks, “I have a business identity and process, but how do I maintain that with Oracle Applications Cloud?” how do you respond? Understanding and embracing the Oracle Applications Cloud User Experience is a multifaceted process encompassing the full product experience, from desktop and tablets to smartphones and, yes, even wearables. But even if you’re excited about the product, it can be a challenge. 

Watch this video with Jonathan Vinoskey, Director, Oracle Applications Partner Enablement (HCM), and Misha Vaughan (@mishavaughan), Director, Oracle Applications User Experience Communications & Outreach, for a quick view into what Oracle Applications Cloud partners should know about the Oracle Applications user experience.

The User Experience Specialist Role

To better educate customers as well as meet their needs on user experience, you need a way to learn. That’s why Oracle created the User Experience Specialist role for Oracle Applications Cloud partners. We now have a UX Guided Learning Path  and assessment live on the Oracle Partner Network for this role, which better enables partners to sell the Oracle Applications Cloud. 

It targets sales and pre-sales roles within your organization to learn about Oracle's investment in UX for cloud and how to position its benefits. It will help you conquer your fear of not being a UX expert, show you how to demo the product across all devices, and custom-fit the Oracle Applications Cloud to your customers to close gaps and overcome objections in the sales cycle.

New Partner Page

Need a one-stop shop for all things UX-related -- from sales tools to developer tools for Oracle Applications Cloud partners? Click on the new For Partners page on the Usable Apps website! It’s full of great resources and offers user experience guidance and tools to make it easier for you to tailor implementations for your own customers and further your joint business with Oracle.

New Partner Events

Check out the new Partner Events page for our team’s upcoming exploits. We'd love to meet up with you on the road to share strategy and assist you with your current issues. Hope to see you soon!

Thursday Mar 19, 2015

Come See OAUX in Las Vegas at COLLABORATE 15

By Gozel Aamoth, Oracle Applications User Experience 

THE WORD IS OUT! There’s ONE event that delivers the full spectrum of Oracle Applications and Technology education you need to boost results all year long. Produced by three independent users groups — IOUG , OAUG , and Quest  — COLLABORATE 15: Technology and Applications Forum for the Oracle Community delivers more than 1,000 sessions and panels, breaking product news, endless opportunities to build your personal and professional networks, keynotes, and more.

This year’s conference will take place at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas April 12-16.

If you are an Oracle customer and scheduled to attend this conference, there are several ways to meet face-to-face with members of the Oracle Applications User Experience team. Sign up for a usability feedback session, visit our demo pod, or attend the presentations.

This is also an opportunity for Oracle sales consultants and partners to see firsthand how Oracle dedicates a significant investment to user experience research and development efforts to maintain and improve Oracle’s products.

Onsite Usability Lab: Get Involved

If you’re going to COLLABORATE 15, don’t miss the chance to collaborate directly with Oracle in a usability feedback session. Your suggestions on the previews of upcoming Oracle releases -- including E-Business Suite, HCM Cloud, Financials, Social Cloud, Emerging Technologies, Cloud Extensibility, and more -- will help us make using the applications even easier and more intuitive. Make a direct impact, and sign up for a session today!

April 14-15, 2015
Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, North Convention Center
Conference Room: South Pacific Ballroom A
Las Vegas, Nevada

Check out this video to hear what Oracle customers and partners have to say about their experience participating in these sessions.

How to register: if you wish to participate or recommend your colleagues, please Sign Up today so we can match you with a session. You’ll be contacted by phone to complete the registration process.*

*Participation requires that your company or organization have a Customer Participation Confidentiality Agreement (CPCA) on file. If your company or organization does not have this, we will start the process of getting one.

Join Us at OAUG Fusion Middleware SIG: Extending the Value of the Oracle Applications Cloud User Experience

Presenter: Basheer Khan, CEO of Knex Technology

Presenter: Greg Nerpouni, 
Senior Manager, OAUX

The Oracle Applications Cloud user experience design strategy is about simplicity, mobility, and extensibility. See what we mean by simplicity as we demo our latest cloud user experiences and show you only the essential information you need for your work. Learn how we are addressing mobility, by delivering the best user experience for each device as you access your enterprise data in the cloud. We’ll also talk about the future of enterprise experiences and the latest trends we see emerging in the consumer market. And finally, understand how you can extend the Oracle Applications Cloud with the tools designed for tailoring the cloud user experience. Come and join us at the SIG!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at 3:15 - 4:15 p.m.
Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Conference Room Breakers H
Las Vegas, Nevada  
Session ID: 10059

Aren't planning attend but still want the latest on the Oracle user experience? Get a strategic look at the user experience roadmap for the Oracle Applications Cloud.
Download  your copy today!

Visit OAUX at Oracle Booth in the Exhibition Hall 

Visit our demo station "Cloud Applications User Experiences: The Future of What Your Employees Will Touch, See, and Hear" to see the simplified user interface in action, discover a new way to interact with your enterprise by smartphone when you're on the go, and learn how to manipulate massive amounts of data elegantly through gestures on a tablet.  

April 13-15, 2015
Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Exhibition Hall
Las Vegas, Nevada

For more information on OAUX's presence at COLLABORATE 15, please visit the Usable Apps events page.

Monday Mar 02, 2015

OAUX attends Oracle HCM World 2015 conference in Washington, D.C.

By Gozel Aamoth, Oracle Applications User Experience

Oracle HCM World  is where human resources, talent management, and business leaders come together to hear from industry influencers, share best practices, and learn how forward-thinking organizations are employing modern HR to transform their organizations. Critical HR topics will be discussed, including workforce planning, recruiting, onboarding, training, leadership development, compensation, benefits, and more. If you attend only one HR event in the next six months, make it this one. 

Leaders in HR are speaking at Oracle HCM World 2015 — Dell, Dow Chemical, Farmacity, Herman Miller, Kaiser Permanente, Monsanto, National Instruments, SunOpta, WAXIE Sanitary Supply, and many more. 

Check out the Oracle HCM blog for the top 5 reasons to attend Oracle HCM World

Oracle HCM World is scheduled for March 25-27 in Washington, D.C. It's not too late; register for the conference today!

Onsite Usability Lab: Sign up to participate in a usability feedback session

We are proud to host our onsite product- usability testing lab for a second year in a row at this conference. If this is your first time, attending this conference, here is your chance to get involved. Want to be on the front lines of Oracle’s next-generation applications? Join one of our usability feedback sessions, in which you can help drive the design and direction of our apps. It’s a great way to make an impact on HCM Cloud, Cloud Social for HCM, Taleo, and more. Sign up for a session at Oracle HCM World  today!

Dates: March 26-27, 2015
Location: Gaylord National Resort and Conference Center, Washington, D.C.

How to register:
Advance sign up is required. In order to reserve your spot, please complete a short questionnaire so we can match you with a session. You’ll then be contacted by phone to complete the registration process

Get Involved: Sign up today  to participate in a usability feedback session. 

If you wish to learn more about this event or recommend your colleagues, please contact Angela Johnston

*Participation requires that your company or organization have a Customer Participation Confidentiality Agreement (CPCA) on file. If your company or organization does not have a CPCA on file, we will start the process of getting one.

Attend Oracle Applications User Experience Presentation

This year’s signature event includes more than 80 in-depth presentations across 8 tracks, including social HR, core HR, talent acquisition, paying people, growing people, Big Data, tech talk, and modern HR. We encourage you to attend the presentation titled “Oracle HCM Cloud User Experiences: Trends, Tailoring, and Strategy” to learn about Oracle’s HCM user experience design strategy, which is about simplicity, mobility, and extensibility. See what we mean by “simplicity” as we demo our latest cloud user experiences and show you only the essential information you need for your work. Learn how we are addressing mobility by delivering the best user experience for each device as you access your enterprise data in the cloud. We’ll also talk about the future of enterprise experiences and the latest trends we see emerging in the consumer market. Finally, understand how you can extend Oracle applications with tools designed for tailoring the cloud user experience. Come and get inspired about the future of Oracle HCM Cloud.

Oracle HCM Cloud User Experiences: Trends, Tailoring, and Strategy
Presenter: Aylin Uysal, Senior Director, HCM User Experience & Jake Kuramoto, Director of User Experience, Oracle
Session ID: Session 8, Paying People track
Date: Friday, March 27, 2015 
Time: 12:45-1:30 p.m. 
Location: National Harbor Room 10

The OAUX team will be very busy in March travelling around the world and delivering key messages on Oracle’s user experience design strategy. If you can’t attend Oracle HCM World 2015  in Washington, D.C., you can meet our team in person at OBUG Experience 2015  in Eindhoven, Netherlands, or MEOUG MAJLIS Annual Conference 2015  in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

For more information on OAUX’s presence at each of these conferences, visit the Usable Apps Events page.

Friday Jan 16, 2015

Join the Oracle Applications User Experience Team for our first onsite usability lab of 2015!

By Gozel Aamoth, Oracle Applications User Experience

Be the first to test-drive future Oracle Supply Chain Management applications. Join the Oracle Applications User Experience team for our first onsite usability lab of 2015! Are you registered to attend Oracle Value Chain Summit #OVCS? If not, it’s not too late. Register by Jan. 23 and save $100!

As a conference attendee, you can choose from more than 150 sessions that offer deep-dives on every aspect of supply chain management: Maintenance, Manufacturing, Procurement, Product Value Chain, Value Chain Execution, Value Chain Planning and Cross Value Chain. Check out this YouTube OVCS video to hear 5 great reasons why you should attend OVCS. 

As part of the Oracle Value Chain Summit, we’ll be sharing future Oracle 
Supply Chain Management applications designs with a select few. You’ll be among the first to: 

  • Test-drive new products before they go to market.
  • Provide feedback on future Oracle designs.
  • Help us develop applications that are intuitive and easy to use.
  • Participate in a group brainstorming session on new emerging technologies such as wearables, leap motion, droids and more.

Event Location & Registration

When: Tuesday, Jan. 27, and Wednesday, Jan. 28
Where: The San Jose McEnery Convention Center, Meeting Room #230, San Jose, Califormia
How to register for UX session: We’ll ask you to complete a short questionnaire so we can match you with a session, then you’ll be contacted by phone to complete the registration process.*

Get Involved: RSVP Now to sign up to participate in a usability feedback session. 

If you wish to learn more about this event or recommend your colleagues, please contact Alisa Hamai

*Participation requires that your company or organization has a Customer Participation Confidentiality Agreement (CPCA) on file. If your company or organization does not have a CPCA on file, we will start the process of getting one.

Tuesday Jan 13, 2015

More Power to the IT User: Release 9 Applications Cloud Customization and Extensibility

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

Oracle’s customers need to be able to extend and customize its Applications Cloud easily, and Oracle remains committed to delivering that in Release 9. This release expands Release 7 and 8’s capabilities to allow administrators to take Oracle applications beyond the box without commissioning a major IT project. It places the most relevant tools in the hands of the people who use them most often. Here’s a look at how Release 9 improves Oracle Applications’ customization and extensibility while preserving the user experience throughout.

Simple Modifications in the Sandbox

Starting in Release 9, all edits made using the Settings Structure tab require an active Sandbox, which provides the ability and security to test and validate changes before publishing them for users and protects customers’ investment in their UI. Re-ordering, renaming, and otherwise editing headers and icons on the home page are intuitive and simple, and an employee in IT has a place to try out the changes before deploying them.

Making edits using the Settings Structure tab: After activating your Sandbox, use drag and drop to set up the home page and the names of sub-tabs so it best suits your users.

Expanded Capabilities

The UI Text Editor has been expanded with regard to what text users can edit and how they can use search for it. Now IT users can search and replace keywords to customize UI text across user interface screens, OTBI (Oracle Transactional Business Intelligence) report definitions, Enterprise Scheduler, and Global Menu Labels.

Navigation for UI text customization

Application Composer has also been updated for Sales Cloud Release 9 to continue promoting consistency and ease of adoption. Have you been wanting to add your own custom pages easily?  Now users can effortlessly create new pages that fit right in with the simplified UI. The Sales Cloud Application Composer even offers a set of ad-hoc icons that match the existing visual design to help customers maintain a quality experience.

Creating a new page in CRM Application Composer: This job is easy using the Simplified Pages tab. You can also add your own sub-tabs and manipulate the fields independently among shared objects.

Icons in Application Composer: When you change an icon here, you only need to do it once; it updates automatically for all UIs and devices.

Smoother Access to Additional Information

In Release 9, system administrators and content managers are able to edit both Getting Started and Help topics to help with employee onboarding or custom training. In Getting Started, admins can add or edit text, insert links, and even include videos.

Editing Getting Started: Choose up to five key features, embedded videos, images, and/or paragraphs of text about your own content or a feature to show up here.

The Customizing Help feature lets the most knowledgeable content managers maintain the topics most relevant to their teams with just one click. Everything entered into a Help topic becomes searchable, so users have more options for finding what they need.

Creating Help: Make a topic active or inactive, edit its text, rearrange existing topics, and drill down as needed for more levels of customization.

To Learn More

Read about the Release 9 Sandboxes
Learn how to customize the look of the simplified UI
Read about the UI Text Editor

Thursday Jan 08, 2015

Happy New Year from Oracle Applications User Experience

By Gozel Aamoth, Oracle Applications User Experience

Hello and happy New Year to everyone! It’s been an eventful year for us in many ways. The past 12 months have been full of successes and milestones, and we couldn't have done it without your support. We would like to thank all of you for your continued support and contributions throughout the year in our customer feedback sessions; your collaboration and feedback on our user experience designs allow Oracle to create new and innovative products.

The Oracle Applications User Experience team (OAUX) has hosted a number of onsite usability labs at various events in 2014. Our User Experience (UX) experts along with our product managers have conducted more than 250 usability feedback activities at conferences such as Oracle HCM World, Oracle Value Chain Summit, COLLABORATE14, OHUG Global, OTM, Oracle OpenWorld, and UKOUG Apps14. In addition, many of our well-known UX speakers gave a number of presentations and live product demonstrations at Oracle-sponsored events and workshops around the world. These have provided Oracle users with an exclusive look at the future of our UX strategy and roadmap.

We are extremely pleased to share this video capturing our customers’ and partners’ experiences at the Oracle OpenWorld 2014 UX Lab in San Francisco.

Are you planning to attend an Oracle event in the next few months?

Consider one of the following conferences, and meet the OAUX team in person:

Oracle Value Chain Summit on January 26-28 in San Jose, Calif.

Oracle HCM World on March 25-27 in Washington

Collaborate15 on April 12-16 in Las Vegas

If your New Year’s resolution is to learn more about Oracle HCM, Sales or ERP Cloud UX strategy, then we have a solution for you. In January and February, our team will host several webinars through Oracle Applications Customers Connect. Are you a member yet? If not, join the community.

For additional events and presentations, visit the Usable Apps Events page.

Come Tour the New Cloud UX Lab at Oracle HQ

If you were lucky enough to catch one of our usability lab tours last September during Oracle OpenWorld 2014, you know how awesome our new Cloud UX Lab is. The space is specifically designed to handle the challenges of demonstrating how user experience can move across devices. It’s also where we are exploring the next generation of devices, such as beacons, to understand their impact and value for the user experience. If you haven’t seen our new Cloud UX lab yet, next time you’re near Oracle’s HQ, book a tour - we’ll meet you there!

OAUX on Social Media 

Can’t live without checking in on social media to read the latest Oracle news? Whichever site you prefer, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Storify, LinkedIn, or Blogs. Visit any of these sites to be the first to get the latest UX announcements, upcoming events, themed content, and updates from our team.

Get Our Newsletter

If you wish to receive our UX quarterly newsletter, it’s very easy to subscribe. Visit UsableApps to read our past editions and learn more.

Wishing you all the best this New Year with all that you set out to achieve!!

Tuesday Jan 06, 2015

Applications User Experience shows off the Oracle 'cool factor' to the Oracle College Hire Program

By DJ Ursal, Oracle Applications User Experience

Ackshaey Singh (from left to right), DJ Ursal (@djursal), Misha Vaughan (@mishavaughan), Joe Goldberg, Noel Portugal (@noelportugal), and David Haimes (@dhaimes) prepare for the Oracle College Hire Morning Joe Panel, "Head in the Clouds." .

One of our charters as part of the Oracle Applications UX organization is to support the Oracle Product Development Boot Camps. The program components are career development, speaker series and social activities. The idea is to promote teamwork, collaboration and give college-hires a chance to work with different technologies within and outside of Oracle and explore their creativity. This was my first time supporting the Oracle Campus Hire (OCH) program as part of the Oracle Applications User Experience group. The Apps UX organization held two sessions: a "Head in the Clouds" panel and a mock Angel Investor event.

The OCH Morning Joe Panel, "Head in the Clouds" (styled after MSNBCs show of the same name), was a great discussion panel. The panel was facilitated by OCH member Ackshaey Singh (Senior Application Engineer) and included Misha Vaughan (Director User Experience, Apps UX Communications & Outreach), David Haimes (Senior Director, Financial Applications Development), Joe Goldberg (Chief Research Scientist, Applications UX), Noel Portugal (Development Manager, Emerging Technologies) and DJ Ursal (Director – Product management). We touched on how Oracle is aligning for the Applications Cloud wearable’s challenges we see with user experience, how beacons work and the opportunity for Oracle, cloud business models, and of course, advice to college hires.  

The afternoon included a mock Angel Investor event using our team’s OpenWorld demos. We held a raffle that encouraged participants to vote for the most interesting demo concept.

Angel Investor voting stations were set up for event attendees.  

The goal of the event for the new hires was to expose them to the breadth and depth of Oracle’s strategy and roadmap on Applications Cloud user experiences in a fun, interactive, and thought provoking way.  

Ackshaey Singh explains what new hires can learn about at the exchange.

The new hires were also given a tour of our new Cloud UX lab. The Cloud UX Lab initiative is to explore how devices are changing the way we design enterprise experiences for the cloud. The Lab model provides opportunities for testing a variety of emerging technology solutions from casting, to beacons, to wearables.

To learn more about where innovation is going at Oracle, check the following blogs:

Monday Dec 22, 2014

ERP Cloud Release 9 Keeps Busy Executives in the Loop

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

With the release of Oracle Applications Cloud Release 9, the simplified UI continues to drive the Oracle user experience forward. Building on Release 7 and 8, Oracle ERP for Release 9 packs even more of a punch into the applications’ simplicity, mobility, and extensibility. Here’s how Oracle ERP Cloud further improves the Oracle user experience.

Simplicity for executives on the go 

Users have everything they need to get started right away at their fingertips on a mobile device, so the days of intimidating data-entry screens, multiple monitors, and dozens of email chains are over.

Financial Reports Sunburst view: Eliminate information overload, and navigate big data in a visual manner.

Embedded social tools for collaboration

Social collaboration is built into the Oracle Applications Cloud platform, right inside every report. Collaboration is a cinch when you can upload, download, and export PDFs in Conversations and even annotate them without leaving the UI. Approvals, Notifications, and Social span the entire Oracle network, so busy users can stay connected wherever they are. 

Social Panel: Created for Release 9, the brand-new Social Panel allows users to access conversations and walls to update information without having to leave the home page. 

Seamless for Financials power users

The features of Oracle ERP Cloud are now only a touch away for those serious financials users. At a glance, check the general ledger close status, for example, including any supporting documentation, all in one streamlined app. Navigating multiple complex systems is a thing of the past because users can now visually navigate ledgers with ease.

Summary view: Not enough information? Just select the Close Monitor to drill down into the next level of detail.

Period Close visualization: Use the toolbar to modify the visualization or get a closer look. From this page, users can also  initiate or respond to a social conversation specific to this period close.

An executive perspective

Oracle Senior Director David Haimes, ERP Cloud Product Development, and Vice President Jeremy Ashley, Oracle Applications User Experience, recently conducted a series of executive briefing events with customers and partners in London about what’s next for the ERP Cloud user experience. Here are their thoughts on those sessions and on Oracle ERP Cloud:

"The challenge with ERP has traditionally been, ‘How do users access, find, and understand typically large and complicated data? With our approach, we allow users to view very complicated things at a glance -- to understand what their next step is. Time is money with ERP. With our new product experience, we have specifically explored methods of putting complicated business information in a way that can be quickly and simply consumed. It guides, suggests, and directs the user to their next action." Jeremy Ashley

"The thing about Release 9 is it is a big feature-function release -- global features, industry features -- and that is what people expect from Oracle. Some of the things that people are getting most excited about are seeing the strides in user experience. Release 9 is a step on a journey. We are introducing some simplified UI for the most common use cases, interactive data visualizations -- people are really excited about this. They have never been able to do this before.  

“Also the social capability with all the mobile apps which really revolutionizes the way people can do their work -- it’s very compelling from the perspective of existing customers and customers who are starting their upgrade to Release 9, who are getting excited about trying this out in their organization and using it to show their end users the benefits of being on the cloud and the continual innovations that Oracle will be delivering to them. 

“It is getting users who would normally not use the system excited about using it. One of the nice things from the sessions in London was hearing, ‘This is great, because I am going to be able to go back and get my end users excited about these features.’” David Haimes

To learn more

Thursday Dec 18, 2014

In the U.K.: Special events and Apps 14 with UKOUG

Oracle HCM Cloud Release 9 UX highlights: ‘Glance, Scan, Commit’ design philosophy at work for Hiring

By Sarah Smart, Oracle Applications User Experience

As Oracle Applications Cloud Release 9 gets under way, the simplified UI continues to improve the Oracle user experience. Continuing the prime directives of Release 7 and 8, Release 9 delivers even more improvements to the applications’ simplicity, mobility, and extensibility. Here’s how Oracle Human Capital Management (HCM) Cloud moves the Oracle user experience forward.

“Glance, Scan, Commit”

The Oracle HCM Cloud dashboard

Oracle’s Release 9 user experience unites even more seamlessly with the design philosophy driving Oracle Applications Cloud. This is the first example of a unified user experience with Taleo. In Hiring Activities, users can easily update the hiring process from a macro view -- at a glance. But if they need to, they can scan for the important pieces and commit to drill deeper. 

Viewing actions to take in Requisitions: Use the drop-down in this innovative “smart card” view to reject, move forward, or add comments on a candidate from any level of commitment. 

Timeline: Visualize data on candidates in different stages of the hiring process, from the first interview to the offer, and quickly scan for a glance at status and next actions. 

Better Understanding: Infographics in Analytics

Simple, modern, well-designed analytics help executives and managers effectively evaluate their organizations with a speedy once-over. The graphics are large, smart, and colorful, making them great for presentations, and progress toward goals is easy to see.

Analytics: See performance ratings in one simple view, and eliminate digging through reports to understand how your organization is doing. 

Headcount Budget view: Check your employee count quickly and easily, and if you need an extra pair of hands, you can jump directly into creating a requisition. 

Maximum Engagement: Social and Competitions

Expanded social capabilities and competitions give employees across generations an extra push to engage in their work life. The Social Panel allows users to access Conversations and Walls to update information without having to leave the home page, and they can have as many Conversation threads as they desire while keeping them organized.

Social Panel: Post to your Wall or the Wall of a business object in which you are actively involved from anywhere in HCM.

Competitions uses the same glance-able view found throughout Release 9, allows actions at multiple levels of commitment, and gives users more information on request. 

Competitions: Perform the most common competition-related tasks from this level, or drill deeper to check rankings or add a score -- number of steps taken for a wellness competition, for example.

Competitions Leader Board: This design approach makes reaching goals as a team fun and engaging.

Pulling It All Together

Oracle HCM Cloud Release 9 provides a smooth, streamlined, more unified experience for human-resources activities and processes. The “glance, scan, commit” design philosophy, the beautiful and easy-to-understand analytics, and the maximized wo

rk-life engagement encouraged by Social and Competitions complement one another in the simplified UI. 

What People Are Saying

“Oracle has also simplified the alphabet soup of its many business-intelligence tools and embedded them in applications, created a single mobile-user experience and introduced many on-premise integration toolkits and pre-packaged integrations.” Bill Kutik, Human Resource Executive Online 

“ ... In Release 9 of Oracle HCM Cloud, much of the focus is on usability. The company has worked to unify the user experience of HCM Cloud applications with those of Taleo Recruiting and Taleo Talent Management so that they function as a consistent suite of applications. One aspect where this has improved the applications is the new “smart cards” for the recruiting application, which organize candidate information in a readable graphic format. Leone espoused the larger goal of providing the same user experience in all the enterprise cloud HCM applications.” Stephan Millard, Ventana Research 

“ ...  Release 9 of HCM Cloud enhances functionality in the Oracle Mobile application. It aligns several parts of mobile recruiting including the hiring work list and interview evaluation screens as well as parts of performance management to look and work similarly to the user interface for the Web-based version of the application. Future versions will continue the effort to harmonize the mobile and Web user interfaces for talent management. ... In addition, our benchmark research on human capital analytics shows that a solid majority (65%) of organizations are using mobile applications for talent management today or plan to do so over the next year.” Stephan Millard, Ventana Research 

To Learn More


Check here for news and upcoming events from Oracle's Applications User Experience team on the Oracle Applications Cloud and more.

People in Spheres
Misha Vaughan, Editor & Senior Director, Applications User Experience
@mishavaughan on Twitter

Learn more about us at
Usable Apps


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