Thursday May 23, 2013

How Toshiba survived the Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami

What makes a cloud hero a “hero”? The first words that come to mind are innovation and achievement. Innovation by definition means “a new method, idea or product”. In the technology world it can mean this among many other things like implementing new ideas that can help you achieve business value or thinking “outside the box” when delivering exceptional service to your customers. In this next cloud hero’s case, both happen to be true.

Toshiba America Nuclear Energy Corporation (TANE) is the North American representative for Toshiba's global nuclear energy business. Established in 2008, TANE operates to provide North American customers with Toshiba's nuclear expertise gained from 50+ years engineering, constructing and operating nuclear power plants. TANE's mission is to provide advanced nuclear power plant technologies & services intended to ensure or improve safe, economical & reliable operations to these customers.

Being in the nuclear industry, disaster recovery and security are critical to the core of TANE's business. With mission critical applications running in the cloud, TANE needed to ensure that the cloud provider’s security strategy would meet their vigorous requirements.

Luckily, Oracle Managed Cloud Services had the answer. Oracle Managed Cloud Services provides it customers with the global scale and expertise that they need. Worldwide data centers, over 15,000 dedicated security service professionals and a defense in depth approach to security –are just a few of the many security features customers can expect. In addition, Oracle Managed Cloud Services adheres to all industry and global security and compliance standards. Another key point for Toshiba- who was challenged with being compliant with security regulations in their industry as well as local data security policies in Japan.

On March 3, 2011, a shocking surprise shook TANE and millions of Japanese residents to their core. The ensuing earthquake and tsunami had a profound impact on not only the Japanese people but on TANE specifically. Due to the earthquake’s timing (only two months prior to their implementation), TANE lost 80% or more of their resources. Oracle was able to step up and provide them the dedicated staff and resources they needed to ensure that they would be up and running within their tight project timeline of several months. Oracle Managed Cloud Services was able to get them up and running with their first Oracle JD Edwards instance in just 3 weeks.

Check out this video and learn how this Cloud Hero saved more than just their IT department.

Who is your cloud hero? Tweet us @OracleCloudZone and don't forget to use hashtag #cloudheroes.

To learn more about Oracle Managed Cloud Services, click here

To learn more about Toshiba, click here


Friday May 17, 2013

Who is your Cloud Hero?


There are no short cuts, no “let's try this and see what happens” when it comes to successfully implementing  the cloud.

Recent research from Oracle found more than half (54 percent) of businesses included in the global survey admitted that their companies have experienced downtime over the last six months due to cloud application integration problems. It seems that rather than busting down the computing and business process silos, companies are just moving the same problems to the cloud. Get the report here... or read this article in ZD Net outlining the implications.


Not Oracle's Cloud Heroes. Here are 3 examples of companies doing the cloud "right". Just 3 because it's the weekend, and you're looking for a quick read.

#1 British Telecom


Mark Wade, Customer Experience Director, for the BT ID Customer Experience Team says, “By consolidating many disparate systems and standardizing onto a single financial management platform, hosted by Oracle On Demand, we have greatly improved transparency, efficiency and control throughout our business operations.” Read more here.


# 2 AutoTrader.com


Dallas Clement, CFO for AutoTrader, discusses the transformative effect of cloud computing and how AutoTrader runs a top-notch HR department through its use of Oracle Fusion HCM and Taleo in the Oracle Cloud. Here's an excellent video interview.


#3: Dominos Pizza

Domino’s Pizza attracts and retains exceptional staff by using Oracle Taleo Enterprise, Oracle Taleo Client Connect, Oracle Taleo Assessment to deliver faster recruiting topped with cost savings and process improvements. Read more here.


Ready to transform your business with Oracle Cloud? Check out the FREE services on cloud.oracle.com.



Wednesday Apr 17, 2013

The Top 5 Things to Look For in a Cloud Provider When it Comes to Security- Part Two


CIO Insights Part Two - Oracle’s Mark Sunday, Gail Coury, and Deloitte’s Irfan Saif, discuss hybrid cloud security, availability, back up, and the infamous topic of cloud silos. Check out part two of the series here:

For more information, visit: Oracle.com/cio

Saturday Mar 23, 2013

IOUG Cloud Computing Special Interest Group (SIG) presents impressive line-up of cloud sessions at Collaborate, Denver

The IOUG Cloud Computing Special Interest Group (SIG) represents the voice of the independent Oracle professional on matters related to Oracle-centric Cloud Computing. The SIG board consists of world-renowned veteran experts that, have have come up with an ensemble of first-rate sessions at COLLABORATE 2013 related to Oracle Cloud Computing.The Cloud track at COLLABORATE 2013 is a great opportunity for the Oracle professional to rub shoulders and learn from some of the best in the industry about cutting-edge technology, prevalent trends, best practices and a whole lot more about Oracle Cloud Computing solution.

The IOUG Cloud Computing SIG presents an impressive line-up of cloud sessions at Collaborate 2013. Here is a summary of cloud sessions :-

Collaborate 2013 Cloud Computing sessions

Date

Session ID

Session Details

Product Line

Track

Sun. Apr. 7

2:15 pm - 3:15 pm

102800

Journey to the Cloud for PeopleSoft

PeopleSoft

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

9:45 am - 10:45 am

11602

Oracle Fusion Applications On Premise Installations Road Map

Oracle Fusion Applications

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

9:45 am - 10:45 am

344

Performance Tuning your DB Cloud in OEM 12c Cloud Control - 360 Degrees

Oracle Database, Oracle Enterprise Manager, Real Application Clusters

Cloud Computing,Database

Mon. Apr. 8

11:00 am - 12:00 pm

11934

The Case for Hyperion in the Cloud

Hyperion EPM, Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

11:00 am - 12:00 pm

951

Oracle Roadmap:Oracle’s Cloud Computing Strategy – Your Strategy. Your Cloud. Your Choice.

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

11:00 am - 12:00 pm

13139

Oracle’s Cloud Computing Strategy – Your Strategy. Your Cloud. Your Choice.

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

12:15 pm - 12:45 pm

436

Cloud Computing Solutions leveraging Oracle Technology

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

1:15 pm - 2:15 pm

250

How to Become a Cloud Builder

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

1:15 pm - 2:15 pm

105310

Selecting the Right Cloud for Your Oracle ERP Solution

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

2:30 pm - 3:30 pm

901

Under The Hood of Oracle Pluggable Databases

Oracle Database

Cloud Computing,Database

Mon. Apr. 8

2:30 pm - 3:30 pm

772

Deploying a Private Database Cloud

Oracle Database, Real Application Clusters, VMware

Cloud Computing,Database

Mon. Apr. 8

3:45 pm - 4:45 pm

631

Roadmap to Cloud deployment for Oracle users

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

12814

Features, Benefits Of Virtualization Technologies For Oracle Applications; Partitioning Policies

Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle VM

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

11850

How to setup your own Private Oracle Fusion Applications Cloud?

Fusion Applications, Grid Control, Oracle Fusion Applications

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

12599

Virtualized Public/Private Cloud Storage

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Mon. Apr. 8

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

481

Virtualizing Oracle: VMware and Oracle VM - A Technical Deep Dive

Oracle Database, Oracle VM, VMware

Cloud Computing,Professional Development

Tue. Apr. 9

8:00 am - 9:00 am

11937

Cloud Computing Industry Directions Part I : Economics and a Business Case Approach

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Tue. Apr. 9

8:00 am - 9:00 am

343

Oracle VM, OEM12c and Cloud Computing 360 Degrees

Oracle VM, Oracle Forms

Cloud Computing

Tue. Apr. 9

8:00 am - 9:00 am

814

Leveraging Enterprise Manager to uncover virtualization performance bottlenecks

Oracle Database, Oracle Enterprise Manager, Oracle WebLogic Suite, VMware

Cloud Computing,Manageability

Tue. Apr. 9

10:45 am - 11:45 am

552

Cloud Computing Directions: Developing your Oracle (Apps, Database and Middleware) strategy

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing,Engineered Systems

Tue. Apr. 9

12:00 pm - 12:30 pm

477

Why Every Database Needs to be Virtualized

Oracle Database, VMware

Cloud Computing

Tue. Apr. 9

12:00 pm - 12:30 pm

979

Improve Employee Productivity with Intuitive and Social Work Environments

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing,Middleware

Tue. Apr. 9

12:00 pm - 12:30 pm

145

Cloud Computing SIG Meeting

Applicable to All

Cloud Computing

Tue. Apr. 9

2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

237

Plan/Configure/Deploy your own Private Oracle Fusion Applications Cloud

Fusion Applications, Oracle Enterprise Manager, Oracle VM

Cloud Computing,Middleware

Tue. Apr. 9

2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

563

Enterprise Manager 12c: The Nerve Center of Oracle Cloud

Oracle Enterprise Manager

Cloud Computing,Engineered Systems

Friday Feb 15, 2013

HCM Innovation In The Cloud (Part 2)

When it comes to the cloud, it can be hard to cut through the swarm of buzz words. Everything starts to sound the same. Here are some important considerations to include in your assessment:
  • How secure will your data be and will it be handled by different vendors?
  • Will you be forced to comply with the vendor’s standard or will you have the flexibility to personalize your application--without complex coding?
  • Can the system grow and evolve with your business?
  • Can you move to the cloud at your pace or is your only option to rip and replace?
  • Do you have the option to choose between a public and private cloud?

By asking these questions, you can ensure that your cloud solution addresses both the complexity concerns HR leaders often have and the security and data privacy worries of IT.

At Oracle, we like to say that we support our customers from concrete to the cloud—from the data center to the database to middleware and the application itself. This approach means greater data security for our customers, greater speed for end users and greater ease of use for both developers and business users. Our platform services are built on industry standards, not proprietary code, and are run transparently in the cloud. We also offer other services in the cloud so should your company wish to expand your business suite or if you already run Oracle cloud applications, you won’t have to worry about complex integrations. Plus, in our cloud, your data is controlled by a single vendor: Oracle. Unlike other HCM cloud vendors who work with a variety of contractors, Oracle owns its data centers. The company has spent over $1 billion dollars in recent years building out these gen 4 data centers and we offer global coverage and 24/7 active monitoring and support. And if you prefer not to enter the public cloud at all, we can deploy a private cloud just for your company.

No two companies are alike and your HCM solution should reflect that. The problem is that many of them don’t, particularly when it comes to cloud-based solutions. Whether it comes to deployment, configuration and system upgrades, we’ve designed our solution so you’re not backed into a corner.

If you’ve decided that your company is ready for the cloud but you still want to leverage an on-premise solution or if you want to try the cloud in a certain region before rolling out globally, we can easily support you. You can move to the cloud incrementally and add new modules or regions as needed, all while co-existing with your existing solutions. This is a drastic contrast to other cloud solutions, which require an all or nothing approach.

The flexibility continues post-deployment. We understand that you may want to tailor your system processes to meet your company’s needs and that you may want to adjust the look, feel and behavior of different screens. We’ve made this easy for the HR user to do—no developers needed. In addition to screen configuration, you can add new fields, run custom reports, modify standard reports and create new process flows.

Finally, as we mentioned, you have the choice to deploy your solution in a public cloud, private cloud or a hybrid cloud that marries modules from both. This way you can have the level of control over your data and your upgrade path that works best for your company.

Oracle’s HCM cloud solutions are trusted by thousands of global companies. And our on-premise HCM solutions and other cloud solutions are trusted by thousands more. But size is not the main point here: it’s experience. The variety of organizations we’ve worked with—the different industries, the different global considerations and the different business models—has given us deep knowledge of how to overcome challenges and implement best practices. Have a thorny challenge? Tell us and there’s a good chance that we’ve dealt with it and have the blueprint to get you over the hump successfully.

Business changes and technology needs to keep pace. We get that and are constantly working to improve and develop our solutions based on industry shifts, technological advancements and feedback from our customers. Over the past two years alone, we’ve come out with 13 Oracle HCM cloud releases. We operate on a regular schedule of continued innovation and pride ourselves on providing real value with each new release, not simply coming out with minor features and fixes.

At the end of the day, Oracle’s objective is to make our customers successful. With technological advances and a greater understanding of HR’s value by the C-suite, it’s HR’s time to shine. By attracting, developing and retaining the best talent and making strategic workforce planning decisions, you can help your company get--and stay ahead--of the competition. Whether you’re looking to start with some basic improvements or you’re ready for a complete transformation, we are here with the tools, the guidance and the support to help you achieve your objectives.

For more information on Oracle’s HCM Cloud Solutions, visit http://cloud.oracle.com

Monday Jan 14, 2013

Moving to the Cloud – Join us at CloudWorld to Discover Why and How

Under pressure to change your business processes and not sure where to start? Is your enterprise resource planning (ERP) delivering on its promise to streamline core business processes or are you saddled with lengthy upgrades, legacy customizations, and complex integrations? You might be wondering whether cloud technology is a viable option – is it able to handle your security requirements, your access rules, your business complexities, and your specific needs for cost reduction. Is it really ready?

Yes, it is… Oracle Cloud offers a broad portfolio of software as a service applications, platform as a service, and social capabilities, all on a subscription basis. It delivers instant value and productivity for IT administrators and developers as well as end users through functionally rich, integrated, enterprise cloud services. With Oracle Cloud, you get enterprise-grade application and platform services based on best-in-class business applications and the industry's leading database and application server.

FACT:  Did you know that more than 25 million users rely on Oracle Cloud every day!!

Learn about the world’s most complete cloud for the enterprise at Oracle CloudWorld and in ONE DAY find out how Oracle can transform your organization! Don’t miss out, register for this FREE event today! 

Thursday Jan 10, 2013

NBC Sports Chooses Oracle Cloud for Social Relationship Management

NBC Sports wanted to engage fans, grow their audience, and give their advertising customers more value. They wanted to use social media to accomplish this.

NBC Sports recognized that sports in inherently social. When you watch a game at the stadium or at home, you’re chatting with the people around you, commenting on plays, and celebrating together after each score. NBC Sports wanted to deliver this same social experience via social media channels.

NBC Sports used Oracle Cloud's Social Relationship Management (SRM) to create an online sporting community on Facebook. Fans can watch sporting events live on NBC television while participating in fan commentary about the event on Facebook. The online fan community is extremely engaged – much like fans in a sporting stadium would be during a game. NBC Sports also pose sporting questions, provide sporting news, and tie-in special promotions with their advertisers to their fans via Facebook.

Since implementing their social strategy, NBC Sports has seen their fans become more engaged, their television audience grow, and their advertisers happier with new social offerings.

To see how Oracle Social Relationship Management can help create better customer experiences for your company, contact Oracle here.


Watch NBC Sports Video: Mark Lazarus, Chairman, NBC Sports Group, describes how Oracle Cloud’s SRM tools helped the broadcaster engage with their fans on social media channels.

Watch Thomas Kurian Keynote: Thomas Kurian, Executive Vice President of Product Development, Oracle, describes Oracle’s Cloud platform and application strategy, how it is transforming business management, and delivering great customer experiences here.

Wednesday Jan 09, 2013

Sell More, Do More, and Grow More with Mobile

Now that the holiday season is over, I could not help noticing tablets as a top holiday gift, more than smartphones or PCs. From Apple’s two iPad models to the new Kindle Fire HD as well as the Galaxy Note Tab 10.1, tablets are becoming increasingly a household item.

In the enterprise world, businesses are also realizing the importance of leveraging mobile devices to increase productivity and efficiency. According to a Nucleus Research survey, Social CRM and Mobile Capabilities Boost Productivity by a total of 26.4 percent (14.6 and 11.8 percent respectively).

.

More specifically, CRM decision makers found that organizations can significantly increase returns on their CRM investments by adding mobile and social capabilities, particularly for salespeople. Nucleus surveyed 223 CRM decision makers and found an average productivity gain of 14.6 percent from mobile capabilities and 11.8 percent from social CRM.

“Given the relatively low price point of many mobile CRM applications and the fact that most social capabilities are bundled into CRM at no additional per-user price, organizations that do not explore mobile and social strategies are likely to lose competitive advantage in 2012 to those competitors that do embrace these technologies,” said Rebecca Wettemann, Vice President of Research, Nucleus Research.

To learn more about it, join us at the Mobile Sales session at Oracle Cloud World, a global series of events designed to help customers realize the benefits of various cloud solutions. Through a combination of best practices, unique insights and customized content, the events will help businesses leverage the cloud to drive their current and future success.

To register, please visit Oracle's CloudWorld page to find the CloudWorld event nearest to you.

For more information on Oracle’s Cloud Customer Service and Support solutions, please visit our website or contact us at (866) 630-7669. You can also see an overview of Oracle Cloud Service and Support on YouTube.

Friday Jan 04, 2013

Larry Ellison Doesn't Get the Cloud: The Dumbest Idea of 2013 by Bob Evans, Senior Vice-President, Communications

Excerpts Reprinted from Forbes OracleVoice Channel

I don’t know if you’ve heard, but the talk among the chattering classes is that neither Oracle, nor company founder and CEO Larry Ellison, gets the cloud.Oracle CEO Larry Ellison (Wikipedia)

Yes, I know, that seems preposterous—regardless of how fervently some competitors want to believe it and no matter how many ways the cognoscenti try to spin it.

Their bizarre theory goes something like this: Oracle’s cloud products aren’t all available yet, most of Oracle’s current revenue comes from non-cloud products, Ellison has criticized the term “cloud computing” in the past, and–here’s their killer argument–all of Oracle’s competitors (and especially the most vulnerable ones) insist that Oracle doesn’t get the cloud.

“Larry Ellison doesn’t get the cloud”: will it become the great lie of 2012 in the tech business? Will it be the foolish and permanent legacy of those who repeat it? Or will history–not to mention marketplace realities–somehow reveal that Ellison “doesn’t get” an industry segment he helped to create and in which he’s been immersed for 14 years?

Here’s an example. Let me share with you a few excerpts from a recent Mercurynews.com column under a headline that begins, “With Oracle Vulnerable,….” The columnist never comes close to proving that Oracle is indeed “vulnerable,” but like the atheist in the foxhole he covers all his bets at the end with this line: “Oracle as underdog? Probably not.” You see, the game is not to prove that Oracle is “vulnerable” or that Ellison truly doesn’t understand cloud computing; rather, the game is to generate a lot of traffic and scuttlebutt with a provocative–and by his own admission, dubious–headline.

That’s just something you might want to chew on as you ponder whether Larry Ellison really gets the cloud.

So let’s consider what we know, not only because that’s the right approach but also because I would contend that most of the previous attempts at answering the question, “Does Larry Ellison get the cloud?” were entirely devoid of even a token gesture at mulling over some basic facts, including these:

  1. Oracle’s annual SaaS revenue is approaching $1 billion. That figure doesn’t include any cloud-related revenue other than SaaS. Seems like a pretty big number for a company that doesn’t get the cloud.
  2. Oracle began developing its Fusion applications for use on-premise or in the cloud almost 8 years ago. Now, granted, the term “cloud computing” didn’t exist back in 2004, but in spite of that Oracle was writing Fusion apps that could be used on-premise or over the Internet via software as a service more than 7 years ago. Maybe that was just dumb luck. Or, maybe Larry Ellison was seeing the big cloud picture 7 years ago.
  3. Oracle began developing its forthcoming database product, which will be optimized for the cloud, 5 years ago. It can be used on public clouds, private clouds, and hybrids. It has taken 5 years to complete because no other database in the world has such capabilities and Oracle wanted to get it completely right before its release. Maybe more dumb luck. Or, maybe Larry Ellison knows a thing or two about how cloud computing will benefit immeasurably from a cloud-optimized database.
  4. Oracle is the only tech company on Earth that has a full product line at all levels of the cloud: Software as a Service, Platform as a Service, and Infrastructure as a Service. Oracle’s new Platform as a Service suite is completely integrated with its SaaS suite for optimal security, performance, time to value, and ease of use. And for Infrastructure as a Service, Oracle’s Exalogic Cloud Machine can run any manner of cloud configurations the customer wants: an Oracle Cloud owned, managed, and operated by Oracle within Oracle’s data centers; a private cloud that Oracle owns, manages, and operates within the customer’s data center; or some combination. “Some of the biggest and best-known companies in the world are turning to the Oracle Cloud, and many are picking us for all levels of the cloud stack,” Oracle senior vice-president Abhay Parasnis told a room full of financial analysts, industry analysts, and media. “All levels of the cloud stack”—is any other tech company playing across those spaces? The answer is no.
  5. Oracle is the only provider of SaaS-based enterprise applications with social capabilities fully integrated into every app at the platform level. Oracle’s Social Relationship Management capabilities “bring social into everything” and can “light up our core LOB applications with social capabilities,” Parasnis said. No other cloud or SaaS company has attempted to do that—is that unique strategy a sign that Larry Ellison doesn’t get the cloud, or an indication that Oracle’s going to force all cloud vendors to try to deliver the huge customer value that social-everywhere represents?
  6. Oracle’s long-term commitment to the cloud has allowed it to incorporate modern features, such as social, plus new and essential capabilities, such as BI tools that LOB heads are demanding as they gain greater control over IT budgets and decision-making. Oracle executive vice-president Thomas Kurian told the analysts, “Ten years ago, the new E-commerce function necessitated a transformation of core IT systems, and today, social is exactly the same” in how it triggers sweeping changes in business processes, information flows, and IT architecture. “We’ve seen this movement to SaaS/cloud over a very long time, and have adapted accordingly,” Kurian said. Once again, is that a sign that Oracle’s clueless about the cloud? Or that it’s in a very enviable position with regard to the hottest trend in enterprise computing today?

For more details about Oracle’s approach, please check out the full story about “Oracle Cloud: Social. Mobile. Complete.”

On top of those facts mentioned above, here are some comments from Ellison himself, and perhaps they’ll help you judge whether he has a clue about the cloud.

In response to a question that began with the contention that until recently Oracle didn’t get the cloud, Ellison interrupted and said,Oracle CloudWorld “I founded the first cloud company—NetSuite—but I didn’t call it ‘cloud’ because nobody was using that term back then. I founded NetSuite, I own it—I’m not just an investor,” Ellison said, later adding that “I haven’t sold any of my [NetSuite] stock.”

“Then six months later Marc Benioff came to me and said, ‘If you’re gonna do accounting on the internet, I’d like to do salesforce-automation on the internet, and I supported him, and we did that—we just didn’t know at that time that it was going to be called ‘the cloud,’ ” Ellison said.

“What I objected to was when the recent and very charismatic term ‘cloud’ was retroactively applied to NetSuite and others—and what I ridiculed was this silly notion that everything is cloud.”

Ellison also mentioned his idea of the Network Computer and his launch of a company by that name many years ago to tap into the nascent world of interconnected devices: “we just didn’t know it was the cloud,” he said.

“So this idea that I didn’t get or don’t get cloud computing is . . . interesting.”

As for “interesting,” there’s an old proverb that says, “May you live in interesting times.” And I think that for cloud-computing companies competing with Larry Ellison and Oracle, life is about to get much more interesting than they would have liked.

Oracle is hosting CloudWorld events around the globe in 2013. To register for a CloudWorld event near you, please visit our website.

Wednesday Jan 02, 2013

Great Customer Experiences Begin with Great Customer Service

Rapidly evolving technologies have changed customers’ behavior and raised their service expectations. Now, 89% of them will stop doing business with you after one bad service experience. And 26% will post negative comments on social sites to share their complaints with others. Bad customer service experiences cost companies, on average, 21% of their annual revenue.

Oracle Cloud Customer Experience Service & Support

On the flip side, organizations that consistently deliver great customer service across touchpoints—web, mobile, social, chat—profit from being able to charge a premium. That extra margin leads to sustainable growth and profits as customers are willing to pay 25% more for a better experience. And they’ll stay with you and refer others, lowering your acquisition costs and improving your bottom line.

So how do you equip your organization to deliver great customer service anywhere, anytime, and from any device? By building a Customer Experience (CX) Enterprise that understands its customers, empowers its employees, and adapts its business with nimble, cloud-based customer service and support solutions.

Come to Oracle CloudWorld and learn how our SaaS solutions can help you deliver exceptional customer service experiences. Presentations you will hear include:

The Customer Experience Imperative

Learn what it takes to deliver a great customer experience and why it matters to your business.

Leverage Social Insights to Deliver a More Comprehensive and Insightful Customer Experience

Explore how to engage on social channels to glean insights and build stronger customer relationships.

Deliver The Next Generation of Web Experiences

Discover ways to deliver Web experiences that provide meaningful service engagements for business growth.

Maintain a Single Dialogue with Your Customers Throughout Their Journey

Hear approaches for providing a consistent, reliable experience across all channels and devices.

Developing a Foundational Knowledge Strategy

Learn how to deploy an agile, robust knowledge base for delivering great customer service.

To register, please visit Oracle's CloudWorld page to find the CloudWorld event nearest to you.

For more information on Oracle’s Cloud Customer Service and Support solutions, please visit our website or contact us at (866) 630-7669. You can also see an overview of Oracle Cloud Service and Support on YouTube.

Monday Dec 17, 2012

The APEX of Business Value… or: the Business Value of APEX? Cloud takes Oracle APEX to new heights!

This blog entry has been re-posted with permission from the author, Lucas Jellema.

The attraction of APEX has increased tremendously with the recent launch of the Oracle Cloud. APEX already supported departmental development and deployment of business applications with minimal involvement from the IT department (only a database needed be made available). Positioned as the ideal replacement for MS Access, APEX probably has managed better to capture the eye of developers and was used for enterprise application development at least as much as for the kind of tactical applications that Oracle strategically positioned it for.

With APEX as PaaS & DevaaS from the Oracle Cloud, a leap is made to a much higher level of business value. Now the IT department is not even needed to make infrastructure available with a database running  on it. All the business needs is a credit card. And the business application that is developed, managed and used from the cloud through a standard browser can now just as easily be accessed by users from around the world as by users from the business department itself. As a bonus – the development of the APEX application is also done in the cloud – with no special demands on the location or the enterprise access privileges of the developers.

To sum it up: APEX from Oracle Cloud Database Service

  • get the development environment up and running in minutes
  • no involvement from the internal IT department required (no for infrastructure, not for platform and not for development)
  • superior availability and scalability is offered by Oracle
  • users from anywhere in the world can be invited to access the application
  • developers from anywhere in the world can participate in creating and maintaining the application

In addition: because the Oracle Cloud platform is the same as the on-premise platform, you can still decide to move the APEX application between the cloud and the local environment – and back again.

image

The REST-ful services that are available through APEX allow programmatic interaction with the database under the APEX application. That means that this database can be synchronized with on premise databases or data stores in (other) clouds. Through the Oracle Cloud Messaging Service, the APEX application can easily enter into asynchronous conversations with other APEX applications, Fusion Middleware applications (ADF, SOA, BPM) and any other type of REST-enabled application.

In my opinion, now, for the first time perhaps, APEX offers the attraction to the business that has been suggested before: because of the cloud, all the business needs is  a credit card (a budget of $175 per month), an internet-connection and a browser. Not like before, with a PC hidden under a desk or a database running somewhere in the data center. No matter how unattended: equipment is needed, power is consumed, the database needs to be kept running and if Oracle Database XE does not suffice, software licenses are required as well. And this set up always has a security challenge associated with it. The cloud fee for the Oracle Cloud Database Service includes infrastructure, power, licenses, availability, platform upgrades, a collection of reusable application components and the development and runtime environments containing the APEX platform.

image

Of course this means that only business departments can move quickly without having to convince their IT colleagues to move along – it also means that small organizations that do no even have IT colleagues can do the same. Getting tailored applications or applications up and running to get in touch with users and customers all over the world is now within easy reach for small outfits – without any investment.

My misunderstanding

For a long time, I was under the impression that the essence of APEX was that the business could create applications themselves – meaning that business ‘people’ would actually go into APEX to create the application. And to me APEX was for too much of a developers’ tool to see that happen – apart from the odd business analyst who missed her calling as an IT developer. Having looked at various other cloud based development offerings – including Force.com, Mendix, WaveMaker, WorkXpress, OrangeScape, Caspio and Cordys- I have come to realize my mistake. All these platforms are positioned for ‘the business’ but require a fair amount of coding and technical expertise. However, they make the business happy nevertheless, because they allow the  business to completely circumvent the IT department. That is the essence. Not having to go through the red tape, not having to wait for IT staff who (justifiably) need weeks or months to provide an environment, not having to deal with administrators (again, justifiably) refusing to take on that ‘strange environment. Being able to think of a some initiative and turn into action right away. The business does not have to build the application – it can easily hire some external developers or even that nerdy boy next doors. They can get started, get an application up and running and invite users in – especially external users such as customers.

They will worry later about upgrades and life cycle management and integration. To get applications up and running quickly and start turning ideas into action and results rightaway. That is the key selling point for all these cloud offerings, including APEX from the Cloud. And it is a compelling story. For APEX probably even more so than for the others. While I consider APEX a somewhat proprietary framework compared with ‘regular’ Java/JEE web development (or even .NET and PHP  development), it is still far more open than most cloud environments. APEX is SQL and PL/SQL based – nothing special about those languages – and can run just as easily on site as in the cloud. It has been around since 2004 (that is not including several predecessors that fed straight into APEX) so it can be considered pretty mature. Oracle as a company seems pretty stable – so investments in its technology are bound to last for some time to come.

By the way: neither APEX nor the other Cloud DevaaS offerings are targeted at creating applications with enormous life times. They fit into a trend of agile development and rapid life cycle management, with fairly light weight user interfaces that quickly adapt to taste, technology trends and functional requirements and that are easily replaced.image

APEX and ADF – a match made in heaven?! (or at least in the sky)

Note that using APEX only for cloud based database with REST-ful Services is also a perfectly viable scenario: any UI – mobile or browser based – capable of consuming REST-ful services can be created against such a business tier. Creating an ADF Mobile application for example that runs aginst REST-ful services is a best practice for mobile development. Such REST-ful services can be consumed from any service provider – including the Cloud based APEX powered REST-ful services running against the Oracle Cloud Database Service!

The ADF Mobile architecture overview can easily be morphed to fit the APEX services in – allowing for a cloud based mobile app:

image

Monday Dec 03, 2012

CSC Accelerates Enterprise Cloud Deployment with Oracle


Andy Bailey, Sr. Vice President, Strategic Alliances, Oracle recently talked with Jeff Budge, Director, Global Oracle Technology Practice of our diamond partner CSC about their offerings for Oracle customers. Jeff shared how CSC services can help accelerate deployment of enterprise private cloud with complete cloud lifecycle management solution from Oracle.

Wednesday Nov 28, 2012

Get Ready...Oracle CloudWorld is Coming to a City Near You in 2013

Is your organization considering the cloud for deploying enterprise applications? Are mobile and social part of your cloud strategy? If you answered YES to either question, then you should plan to join us at an Oracle CloudWorld event, coming to a city near you in 2013. If you attend, you'll get an opportunity to learn firsthand about Oracle Cloud, talk to product experts, see live demos, and network with other industry professionals. By the way, did I mention that Oracle CloudWorld is a FREE event?

Whether you're a C-level executive, line of business manager, or hardcore application developer, Oracle CloudWorld will have valuable information for you with keynotes, breakout sessions, demos, and dedicated tracks for:

  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer Service and Support
  • Finance and Operations
  • Human Resources
  • Application Developers
  • Applications IT
Click here to learn more about Oracle CloudWorld, including cities and dates. Hope to see you there!

Tuesday Nov 13, 2012

Spotlight on Oracle Social Relationship Management. Social Enable Your Enterprise with Oracle SRM.

Facebook is now the most popular site on the Internet. People are tweeting more than they send email. Because there are so many people on social media, companies and brands want to be there too. They want to be able to listen to social chatter, engage with customers on social, create great-looking Facebook pages, and roll out social-collaborative work environments within their organization. This is where Oracle Social Relationship Management (SRM) comes in. Oracle SRM is a product that allows companies to manage their presence with prospects and customers on social channels.

Let's talk about two popular use cases with Oracle SRM.

  • Easy Publishing - Companies now have an average of 178 social media accounts - with every product or geography or employee group creating their own social media channel. For example, if you work at an international hotel chain with every single hotel creating their own Facebook page for their location, that chain can have well over 1,000 social media accounts. Managing these channels is a mess - with logging in and out of every account, making sure that all accounts are on brand, and preventing rogue posts from destroying the brand. This is where Oracle SRM comes in. With Oracle Social Relationship Management, you can log into one window and post messages to all 1,000+ social channels at once. You can set up approval flows and have each account generate their own content but that content must be approved before publishing. The benefits of this are easy social media publishing, brand consistency across all channels, and protection of your brand from inappropriate posts.
  • Monitoring and Listening - People are writing and talking about your company right now on social media. 75% of social media users have written a negative post about a brand after a poor customer service experience. Think about all the negative posts you see in your Facebook news feed about delayed flights or being on hold for 45 minutes. There is so much social chatter going on around your brand that it's almost impossible to keep up or comprehend what's going on. That's where Oracle SRM comes in. With Social Relationship Management, a company can monitor and listen to what people are saying about them on social channels. They can drill down into individual posts or get a high level view of trends and mentions. The benefits of this are comprehending what's being said about your brand and its competitors, understanding customers and their intent, and responding to negative posts before they become a PR crisis.

Oracle SRM is part of Oracle Cloud. The benefits of cloud deployment for customers are faster deployments, less maintenance, and lower cost of ownership versus on-premise deployments.

Oracle SRM also fits into Oracle's vision to social enable your enterprise. With Oracle SRM, social media is not just a marketing channel. Social media is also mechanism for sales, customer support, recruiting, and employee collaboration.

For more information about how Oracle SRM can social enable your enterprise, please visit oracle.com/social. For more information about Oracle Cloud, please visit cloud.oracle.com.

Tuesday Oct 30, 2012

Multi-Tier Application As A Service in Private Cloud at GE Healthcare

Greg Handstedt  from GE Healthcared joined the "Managing Your Private Cloud With Oracle Enterprise Manager' session at Oracle OpenWorld 2012 and discussed the benefits of deploying Siebel in a private cloud resulting in faster deployment, usage accountability, and better compliance.

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