Apps Transformation Day - Highlights and Insights

With the strap line "focus on the projects of tomorrow" the Applications Transformation event was for UK Oracle User Group members to spend time learning about the options for the evolution of their enterprise applications. The event was well attended, and included some exhibitors - most of which were working on Fusion Applications implementation projects. As per my photo below taken from the lobby entrance, the tall reaching architecture of London's CBI Conference Centre seemed a fitting location for some blue-sky-thinking.

The agenda was broken into five streams; Financials, Procurement, Customer Experience, Human Capital Management, and Technology, with each having four session slots. You can see the full agenda online here. What follows is a summary of my observations.

The first round of sessions was dominated by the Applications Navigator. This is a concept developed jointly by the User Group and Oracle with the intent to act as a guide to understand what products and services are available based on specific interests and business drivers. This is an online web tool that provides an intuitive way of locating valuable resources including whitepapers, videos, reports, infographics, and ebooks. As illustrated by the diagram below, the navigation begins with business domain, then drills into the area of concern. Finally the resources are divided between categories of Big Data, Cloud, Social, and Mobile.


After this I attended a session on Oracle AppsAdvantage a newer initiative to explain how to use the capabilities of Fusion Middleware products to help extend and integrate existing Oracle Applications. Full details can be found on the official website here plus the great middleware blog often has related posts. What I noted was that using the related connectors and capabilities is seen as just as relevant when Oracle Fusion Applications are already part of your applications portfolio, offering a powerful way to enhance coexistence and to get more hands-on with the latest tools for interconnecting applications and cloud services.

Next I attended a session from a UK government regional authority who shared their experiences in moving from E-Business Suite 11i10 to Fusion Financials in the cloud. Here are some interesting points they made:

  • Limitations on feature functions actually helped them review and simplify their business processes.
  • The fusion analytics were seen as key benefit, freeing up time from having to meet to discuss raw report data.
  • A massive 30% cost savings where being anticipated compared with going to R12. Also large savings on the ongoing operating costs where anticipated by using Oracle Cloud.
  • There was an opportunity to rationalize their system, including; cleansing of user accounts and security, simplification of business processes, and a reconciliation of customizations.
  • Whilst service requests were raised during the implementation, most were simple how-to type questions. They were impressed with the support received from Oracle.
  • When asked the response was "yes, I'd do it again".

Finally I was presenting during the forth round of sessions, and offered up an overview of what customizations are possible in Oracle Cloud. Since I was officially put in the HCM track I kept focus around the user interface, however I did include options for firing events and running business processes. It was a lively session since I focused on moving demo's and examples rather than bullet points, and there were questions throughout. Some interesting discussions were around using sandboxes and how customizations are managed based on traditional development lifecycle thinking. I was especially pleased when one attendee told me it was the best session he had been to all day!

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