Tuesday Apr 08, 2014

Checklist for Sales and Sales Operations Leaders

You’re running a sales or sales operations team. You get invited to a number of events—or are spending time out of the office with customers. That’s your job.

Another invitation comes along. You quickly scan it, thinking “what’s in this for me?

The Checklist

  • New Ideas: Do you look outside your company, to industry thought leaders and your sales peers for new ideas?
  • Career Planning: Is it important to look ahead—for your business and your career—to understand where Selling is headed and how it’s changing your job?
  • Translating Plans to Action: Is there something you could learn from your peers—running Sales organizations like yours—about doing things faster, closing more big-ticket deals?
[Read More]

Friday Apr 04, 2014

Network With Your Back Office Peers at Oracle CloudWorld Chicago

[Read More]

Friday Mar 28, 2014

Cloud Odyssey: A Hero's Quest at Collaborate 2014!

Calling All Heroes - Join the Quest!

Cloud Odyssey: A Hero's Quest is launching at Collaborate 2014!  Sponsored by the IOUG, OAUG and Quest user groups, you can attend this exclusive sci-fi movie screening as a pre-conference workshop at Collaborate on Monday, April 7, Venetian Hotel, Lido 3003.  If you and your organization are on a journey to the cloud, join us to watch Cyrus Agarwal and the crew of the starship Stratus on their voyage to the mysterious cloud planet, Terranuvem.   To get there, Cyrus and the crew will test the limits of technology, tenacity and human ingenuity.  Watch the movie trailer here.

 After the film, you'll learn how to build, deploy and deliver private clouds that enable IT organizations to provide the business with greater agility, lower cost and lower risk.  Along the way, you just might become a cloud hero, too!

see the detailed agenda here

If you are unable to attend the event at Collaborate, please join us in our global tour, coming to a city near you, complete schedule of events around the world is here.

Oracle and Verizon Provide Customers More Choice in the Cloud

In case you missed it, Oracle and Verizon Enterprise Solutions recently announced they had forged a new relationship to offer Oracle software on Verizon’s cloud infrastructure. It was a significant announcement because both companies are leaders in their respective industries and are showing their continued commitment to being leaders in the cloud. Verizon offers enterprise-level services that allow large and mid-size businesses to tap into the power of the cloud. Oracle’s cloud strategy and commitment is to provide customers greater choice and flexibility in how to deploy Oracle software in the cloud.

As part of the agreement, Verizon will offer Oracle Database and Oracle Fusion Middleware on the Verizon Terremark Enterprise Cloud, Verizon Managed Hosting, and the new Verizon Cloud, which is currently in beta. Customers will be able to pay as they go for Oracle software and choose from either monthly or hourly subscription pricing with the security and reliability of deploying on Verizon’s proven, enterprise-class cloud infrastructure. In addition, Verizon’s deep experience with database administration tasks such as provisioning, backups, patching, monitoring, and capacity scaling enables customers to focus on innovation and growing their businesses.

Customers interested in leveraging Oracle software on Verizon Enterprise Cloud or Verizon Managed Hosting services should visit the Verizon Enterprise Solutions website. For more details about the relationship, read Verizon’s news release or the FAQ.

Also, if you're attending InterOp Las Vegas next week, join Oracle's Joe Rayman (VP, Technology & Strategy), Verizon Terremark CTO, John Considine, and other industry executives on April 2nd @ 4pm (InterOp session #VT34)  for an executive panel session on the emergence of enterprise cloud ecosystems. We expect to have an open and informative discussion which will include Oracle and Verizon's own visions for the cloud. We hope to see you there.

Friday Mar 21, 2014

You Are Not Even Wrong About the Cloud - Part 3

The next area of Cloud computing subject to the distorting effect of orthogonality has to do with the way many people want to start to use the Cloud. The most common starting place is to try to move existing applications to the Cloud.

People want to migrate an existing application to a new environment. Migration, by its very nature, is orthogonal. In a migration effort, you invest effort and resources and take on risk to achieve the goal of having the same application you used to have. So there are costs for the migration effort, without an direct benefit over what you have now from that effort. Of course, there are other benefits that come from a migration, such as a simpler or most cost-effective environment, but these are not directly related to the migration itself. This is the definition of orthogonality – benefits from one area and costs from another.

However, the hope that a migration to the Cloud will be effortless is founded on a basic misconception about the Cloud. The Cloud is not magic – reduced costs are not suddenly available through magic Cloud pixie dust. Although Cloud vendors may get their underlying components at a bigger discount because they buy larger quantities, this savings is offset by the need for these companies to make a profit on their services.

The way the Cloud saves money is through automation. Cloud vendors automate various IT maintenance tasks and operations, and, by doing so, can scale with less expense. Pretty much all the cost benefits from the Cloud stem from this core fact. Even a technical feature like multi-tenancy is a way to automate the support of many individual tenants on a fixed pool of IT resources.

The use of automation comes with a corresponding loss of flexibility. Automated procedures expect fairly standardized environments, or they may not work properly. The more productivity that a Cloud offering provides, the more automation, the greater the loss of flexibility.

[Read More]

Friday Mar 14, 2014

Managed Cloud Services: Governance Grows Up

 written by: Beth Ellyn Rosenthal, Outsourcing Center

Ask 10 people what constitutes a successful long-term managed cloud service relationship and you will get 10 different answers. But everyone will say governance is a key driver in every managed cloud services relationship, no matter the flavor, and will continue to be as long as buyers and their service providers have to work together.

But governance has been undergoing a constant metamorphosis since the days when Ross Perot took over some mainframe functions. “Governance has grown some teeth and the teeth are in the shape of dollar signs,” says Michael Alfonsi, managing director, Financial Transactions Portfolio, Americas for BancTec. “Governance, which started out as a service level agreement (SLA) development and management committee, has now become a true management metrics oversight body that assigns penalties or provides incentives (in more enlightened relationships) as it monitors the performance of the entire relationship.”

We asked a third party to survey a  panel of experts on what forces will change this bedrock function in 2014 and beyond. Here are their sage predictions. Click here to read the full article.

Friday Mar 07, 2014

Oracle’s Day in the Cloud in Melbourne

written by: Rushenka Perrera

Oracle CloudWorld in Melbourne took place on a steamy 32 degree day at the Grand Hyatt. The event kicked off with registration at 8am and the plenary at 8.45am. With 600 attendees, it was even bigger than the event we ran in Sydney almost a year ago.
The event featured six tracks focusing on sales/marketing; finance and operations; customer service; developers; IT innovation and HR. This CloudWorld had large numbers of attendees from all different lines of business as every effort had been made to make sure the agendas for each track were compelling enough to appeal to the specific needs of these busy individuals.
The plenary sessions were packed to the rafters. Tim Ebbeck, Managing Director for ANZ kicked off the proceedings and introduced Jeff Henley, Oracle’s Chairman who had the audience captivated with his presentation on Moving at the Speed of Opportunity. Jeff was followed by Reggie Bradford, SVP, Product Development, Oracle, Former Founder & CEO of Vitrue who presented the power of the Oracle cloud.


The plenary sessions ended with a panel titled ‘Transform Your Business’. The participants came from diverse backgrounds but provided highly engaging banter to challenge the perceptions of the audience and to introduce them to new ways of thinking. The panel lineup included a stellar cast:
Iain Clarke, Chief Technology Officer, Cloud Services, Capgemini Australia
Brandon Byrne, Vice President of Finance and Administration, Curse
Dr David Rock, Author and Director, NeuroLeadership Institute
Matthew Holst, Director of Demand Centre & CRM APAC, Dell
Anthony Micomonaco, Manager Knowledge Management, Product & Markets, National Australia Bank
The different track speakers also included some heavyweights including:
•    Hugh Macfarlane, Founder & CEO of MathMarketing | Author of "The Leaky Funnel" talking about integrated sales and marketing.
•    Dr Catriona Wallace, Customer Experience Futurist and Chief Executive on designing a high performance customer experience organisation for the future.
•    Dr David Rock, Author and Director, NeuroLeadership Institute on the neuroscience of developing leaders.
•    Brandon Byrne, Vice President of Finance and Administration, Curse talking about why Curse chose Oracle Cloud over the competition.
•    Iain Clarke, Director – Chief Technology Officer - Cloud Services, CapGemini and NRMA on how to drive end to end innovation around cloud adoption.
•    Matthew Holst,Director of Demand Centre & CRM APAC, Dell discussing Dell’s marketing journey using Eloqua.
•    Nigel Prior, National Customer Experience Practice Manager, NEC Australia talking about their customer experience strategy.
•    Robert Hillard, Managing Partner Technology Agenda, Deloitte on what the tech trends will be for 2014.


The day ended with Reggie Bradford summing up on customer expectations in the age of the modern customer experience and finally with Lauren Anderson, Chief Knowledge Officer at Collaborative Lab, really challenging the audience and wowing them with stories of new cloud innovation in her presentation on  a new world of consumer behaviours.

Friday Feb 21, 2014

You Are Not Even Wrong About the Cloud - Part 2

In the first part of this blog series, I described the orthogonal nature of costs and benefits with regard to Cloud computing. The mismatch between the forces that incur costs and rack up benefits has led to a general misunderstanding of this technology area. The first area for examination of this mismatch are the different audiences investigating Cloud computing.

The past couple of years have really reminded me of the early 90s, with Cloud taking the place of graphical user interfaces (GUIs). I distinctly remember being at the launch of Window 3.0, the first real GUI from Microsoft, the dominant client operating system. There were a bunch of crotchety old IT guys (who were probably younger than I am now) complaining about how they “weren’t going to buy 286s to run Windows”. And they were probably right. They didn’t buy 286s that year – they bought 486s in two years.

Because the wave of GUIs was an unstoppable tsunami. The client side of the environment went from green-screen/command-line to GUI in just a couple of years, whether IT liked it or not. The reason was simple: it was easier.

[Read More]

Friday Feb 14, 2014

You Are Not Even Wrong About the Cloud - Part 1

Many years ago, I read an article in The New Yorker about a math expert who was working as one of the early quants on Wall Street. One phrase from that article has become a part of my vocabulary – “You are not even wrong”. By this, the mathematician meant that the person was so far off base on a topic as to not even qualify as being wrong – it’s like they had left the universe of correct and incorrect on a certain topic.

I have used it over the years as a sarcastic description of some opinion I felt was on the far side of clueless. But, in reality, the description is not just an ultimate putdown of sorts. This phrase can apply to any ideas which don’t really apply to a particular scenario. The person expressing the opinion is not necessarily unintelligent, or even uninformed. They are just playing on the wrong field.

I’ve been product manager for the Oracle Database Cloud for the past 3 years, and I find that this situation is wildly common when people talk about Cloud computing. Seemingly everyone is excited about the possibilities of the Cloud, but the overwhelming majority of people are looking at this technology area from an inappropriate viewpoint.

Put simply, most believe the Cloud is magic. And we all know there is no magic technology – even a great advance like Exadata is a result of a bunch of good decisions implemented well.

The problem lies in something I refer to as the orthogonal nature of costs and benefits. When two terms are orthogonal, there is no statistical relationship between them. In the same way, there are important facets of Cloud computing where the costs and benefits stem from different places – places which are rarely united in a single world view.

This blog is the first of five parts. In the next three parts (with the first of these three parts here), I will discuss three prominent areas of orthogonal costs and benefits, which will help you to understand how to properly evaluate the what, when and hows of Cloud computing for your particular organization. The final part will be a general prescription on how to move to the Cloud to maximize benefits and minimize both problems and disappointments.

Tuesday Feb 04, 2014

Summary of Twitter chat about Cloud Odyssey, a sci-fi movie by Oracle

We had a twitter based chat with Rex Wang , VP of Product Marketing , Oracle and executive producer of the Cloud Odyssey, a sci-fi movie by Oracle. In this chat, Rex answered questions about the objectives behind the movie, how movie is made, technologies covered in the Cloud Odyssey events etc. Here is the summary of the twitter based chat captured as Storify story :
[Read More]

Friday Jan 24, 2014

4 Core Steps To Support Conversion Along Your Audience’s Journey

How do you facilitate more integrated demand generation campaigns? By delivering more rich information discovery and exchange on the channels where your audiences are interacting. Cultivate a role in the discussion, and optimize your activity mix to understand what’s effective, and how you can influence the engagement process in a meaningful way to your prospects and customers. To help you think outside your traditional marketing box,  here are 4 “building benefits” — or a phased approach — to optimize conversion rates throughout the funnel with marketing technology . [Read More]

Tuesday Jan 21, 2014

Cloud Odyssey: A Hero's Quest, a sci-fi movie by Oracle, coming to a city near you

Cloud Odyssey: A Hero's Quest, a sci-fi movie by Oracle is about the journey of a crew of Earth’s top engineers to a mysterious cloud planet,Terranuvem . Learn more about the movie and how the hero's journey has similarities with an enterprise's journey to private cloud by joining a twitter based chat on February 4th at 10AM pacific time with Rex Wang , VP of Product Marketing , Oracle and executive producer of the sci-fi movie. You can participate in the chat using hash tag #CloudOdyssey on Twitter.com or by going to  tweetchat.com/room/CloudOdyssey (Needs Twitter credential for participating). [Read More]

Friday Jan 17, 2014

How Mobile & Social Increase the Value of HR Technology

By Mike Vilimek

wow

A key finding from CedarCrestone’s 2013 – 2014 HR Systems Survey was that improving the user experience is an important way to improve user adoption. It makes sense really. If a system provides an easy, modern, and engaging user experience, chances are more people will use it. Contrary, if a system provides a frustrating, complex and outdated user experience, people will simply avoid using it.


[Read More]

Friday Dec 13, 2013

6 Tips to Fuel Customer-Focused Marketing

written by: Amanda Batista

In the modern marketplace, no longer can customer and prospect engagements be relegated to generic, templated messaging. Because technology has, and continues to, evolve at a rapid pace, consumers are kept connected, informed, and empowered to make smarter decisions to support their goals. The Amazon.com “You Might Also Like Approach” consumers have become accustomed to as consumers has translated to our professional roles, and they expect relevant and compelling offers and communications from the brands they engage with.

Organizations also need to meet more demands for programs, such as digital marketing and social media — with fewer resources — but the lack of access to customer information can make it difficult to create and deliver compelling campaigns. While this has challenged organizations to rethink their engagement strategies to refine the alignment of marketing and sales communications, the digitally fueled ecosystem also presents unique and exciting opportunities for marketers and sales people to interact with consumers across more channels, enhancing the ability to garner important behavioral data to build out detailed profiles.

Moreover, organizations are challenged to take a metrics-based approach to better serve these more informed consumers. To deliver on the promise of relevant and value, marketing and sales teams must be aligned in their strategic measurements and engagement communications.

Cloud technology facilitates greater access to customer information, enabling you to have greater top-line revenue and return on your company's marketing investment. A modern marketing approach — with the right mix of process technology (science) and creative content (art) — can transform your business.

To help you think outside your traditional marketing box here are 3 “building benefits” — or a phased approach — to integrating marketing communications in the cloud:

1. Understand your buyer with a universal customer profile- The proliferation of engagement channels has ushered in a massive outpour of valuable data that organizations can use to expand their prospect and customer profiles. For example, marketers can include activities relevant to digital assets, and track customer activity through earned, owned, and paid media during the engagement process.

2. Align organizational business practices- Organizations that have done the hard work to agree on definitions must collaborate to set shared goals for their sales and marketing teams. To make this process easier and more transparent, they need a shared set of metrics to define the Sales/Marketing pipeline – and form “one view of the truth." This shared sales and marketing dashboard can be a “holy grail” because it allows organizations to understand the velocity and shape of the sales pipeline and make real-time adjustments if they see an opportunity or issue. In addition to optimized efficiency and more seamless execution, a key benefit of alignment is that the end user experience is optimized as a result of that united front.

3. Demonstrate value to your audience- With the buyer in the driver seat, marketers have to find a way to comfortably ride shotgun rather than being left in the backseat, or worse, not have the opportunity to ride along at all. To optimize customer acquisition and retention, marketers must continually demonstrate value and commitment to their customers. With the proper understanding of how today’s digital marketing technology enables you to know your buyer (and appropriately action the right marketing engagement).

4. Improve campaign results by leveraging digital body language and real-time data

Tracking marketing effectiveness helps marketing departments determine whether their campaigns have been successful in compelling prospects to take a desired action. Marketers can then fine-tune their strategies in the midst of a campaign while keeping executive management posted on how Marketing is helping to fill the sales pipeline.

Rethinking how to modernize your marketing technology tactics? Join us at Oracle CloudWorld for best practice insight, Jan. 29 in San Francisco.

Friday Nov 22, 2013

The World’s Gone Mobile. What Does that Mean for HR?

 written by: Stephanie Lepow

Today’s employees are accustomed to a new consumer-driven culture where they have a voice, are connected and can get things done when and where they want. Everywhere you look, people are tapping away on smartphones and tablets. And it’s not just about texting friends or posting Facebook status updates. Consumers today shop in their pajamas, and in the airport terminal and on their way to work. They pay bills while standing in line at the grocery store. They answer emails while waiting for their latte. Mobile technology—both the accessibility and the attention paid to delivering a simple and user-centric experience—has changed the way we communicate. This has spilled over into the workplace. In the 2013 Avanade “Work Redesigned” study of 600 executives, business leaders and IT leaders worldwide, 61% of companies report that most employees use personal computing devices at work. While most are still using phones and tablets for basic tasks such as reading email and managing their calendars, more than a third of companies say employees use the devices for advanced tasks such as customer relationship management (CRM), project management, content creation, and data analysis. The 2013-2014 CedarCrestone HR Systems Survey echoes this trend, noting that mobile-enabled process adoption grew 67% since 2012 with the most use in payroll, recruiting and performance management. CedarCrestone predicts that mobile-enabled processes will almost double by 2014.

Modern HR leaders are tapping into this trend, enabling their employees to access HR applications on their smartphones and tablets for everything from basic self-service tasks that used to require assistance from HR—such as updating personal data or reviewing benefits—to more complex tasks such as analyzing headcount reports and reviewing employee performance data.

As this video from Newfield Exploration shows, mobile applications can also play a huge role in keeping managers and employees aligned on objectives and performance goals, providing staff with real-time access to critical information, and connecting colleagues when they are spread out among offices.

Watch the video:

http://player.vimeo.com/video/74857035

Learn more about the role mobile can play in delivering an engaging and productive employee experience to your modern workforce. Join us at Oracle CloudWorld events happening worldwide, from now through April. At these free, day-long events, you’ll hear insightful keynotes and real-world case studies, have the opportunity to participate in hands-on demos, and get the chance to engage in honest dialogue with your peers. There’s an entire track devoted to modern HR so you won’t want to miss it.

See event locations and register now: http://www.oracle.com/events/global/en/cloudworld/index.html

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