By Edith Mireles-Oracle on Jun 06, 2015
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 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.
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.
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.
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