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Cultivating Cloud Culture: How to Unlock True Innovation

I’ve been in the cloud game for over 15 years—since before it was cool—which means I’ve watched from a front-row seat as cloud completely changed the game for business and IT leaders. Today, as even the biggest enterprises are sunsetting their legacy, on-premises systems and embracing the cloud, the work we do as consultants is more important than ever.  After all, a cloud solution can only deliver on its full potential when business processes and organizational culture are fully aligned to it.  Here at Oracle Consulting, we see our organization as the bridge between the technology and the customer. It’s our mission to blend delivery and execution with human-centered, cultural transformation.  Cloud is a culture shift, first and foremost. Get your culture right, and you can make cloud soar. But how do you shift your culture? And, why is that important? To help bring clarity to these nuanced conversations around culture, we adhere to eight attributes that we firmly believe are at the heart of every highly functioning “Cloudy” Culture.  Of course, each trait serves a vital role, but today I’d like to explain why empowerment is the silver bullet for cloud success. When we engage with clients, one of our imperative goals is to cultivate an environment in the cloud where people feel capable and confident to make decisions at the pace of innovation, based on a well-defined set of criteria. Empowerment, done right, signifies a team of confident professionals who are aligned around a vision.  But how do you know if your workplace culture lacks empowerment?  Do you ever find yourself fielding questions that anyone could figure out on their own? Would your team describe the way we do things as an iterative, flexible process or simply the path of least resistance?  Is it hard to recall the last time someone approached you, unprompted, with a bold new idea or an outside-the-box solution to a problem that’s been plaguing your organization? Do people tend to keep their heads down and stay in their lanes until a moment of crisis snaps them out of it? And then what happens? Is there a spirit of collaborative ownership or do you see a lot of buck passing and us versus them language?  These are the signs of a disempowered workplace. Let me be clear: a top-down, command-and-control organization can be effective in many scenarios. That said, I can tell you from firsthand experience that attempting any transformation as wide reaching as a cloud implementation without an empowered team can have a domino effect that derails the entire project. Lack of empowerment impedes decision making, discourages innovation, and creates finger pointing situations—all of which slow the pace of the implementation—costing time and money, and creating a negative, frustrating experience. Empowerment is the end result of doing things the right way Everyone knows their roles and responsibilities, and there’s mutually understood organizational clarity around the competencies needed to get to the end state.  Decisions are made on a timely basis through empowered leaders at every level—not just at the top. Innovation is woven into the fabric of your team, so people feel safe and supported to bring new ways of thinking to the table. Transparency bolsters that sense of communal purpose, and measurements are used along the way to keep the team on track.  It creates a positive, invigorating experience because everyone is equally invested in and empowered to deliver on the shared vision.  Embracing change, developing cloud-confidence A move to the cloud is an opportunity for businesses to embrace iterative and agile processes. I’ll be honest, this is a learning curve for most organizations. And, we’ve found that sometimes the larger the organization, the more dramatic (and sometimes uncomfortable) this learning curve can feel.  To help our clients gain confidence in this new way of working, we help lead them through change—teaching, advising, and executing on quick wins to gain confidence. We draw on the knowledge of why things were done in the past, and align on how they will be done in the future, to realize their desired business outcomes. Empowerment is the key to cultivating a cloudy culture When people trust their decision-making capabilities, they’re more likely to promote transparency and collaboration between lines of business. This streamlines processes and bolsters versatility as people learn to shift roles across teams. All of these behaviors foster the ideal environment for a cloudy culture, which fuels innovation and leads to greater acceleration.  That’s why I tell my clients: If you're going to over-index on any one attribute of a cloudy culture, it should be empowerment. Any resource dedicated to building confidence is a worthy investment because empowered people move mountains.  Is your culture cloud-ready?  Take our Cloud Readiness Assessment and let me know what you think in the comments. 

I’ve been in the cloud game for over 15 years—since before it was cool—which means I’ve watched from a front-row seat as cloud completely changed the game for business and IT leaders. Today, as even...

Soar to Cloud - An Overview

AUTHORS: Dawn Austin, Senior Director, Cloud Migration, Oracle Consulting Ross Emerton, Senior Director, Cloud Migration, Oracle Consulting According to Cowen/Altman Vilandrie & Co 2018 Cloud Survey, over 50% of businesses expect to migrate non-cloud workloads to the cloud within two years. Each company’s reasons for moving to the cloud are different and include some or all of the below drivers: Cost reduction – according to Forrester Research, 75% of today’s IT budget is spent on maintenance. Companies with aging hardware are assessing the business value of operating expense model vs. a large capital investment. Innovate to differentiate and compete – MIT Sloan Review reports that 79% of business fears disruption from upstarts and Constellation Research says that 75% of companies admit innovation is stifled by integration issues. Reduce risk – 91% of customers responding to Health IT Outcomes survey have experienced unplanned outages. Mitigate lack of talent – 30% of smaller enterprises and a quarter of larger enterprises complained about a lack of available talent to do cloud migrations based on an IDC Survey Spotlight report.   In a cloud migration, it is imperative to simultaneously operate in a new paradigm while continuing to embrace the "business as usual” operating model. Oracle Consulting has designed the Soar Cloud migration offering for IaaS and PaaS, a rapid like-for-like migration approach to help our customers shift databases and applications to the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) based on the business outcomes they are trying to achieve. Our proprietary platform leverages automation and accelerators to migrate both Oracle and non-Oracle workloads, delivering powerful results for the modern organization’s journey to the Cloud.  Oracle’s processes and tooling are based on decades of experience consolidated into “best practices” and captured into a proprietary platform with automation and analytics. Our Cloud Certified delivery teams and tight alignment with product teams uniquely position Oracle Consulting to be the ‘how” behind your business transformation. Our approach for Cloud migration has three steps – Analyzing, Planning, and Migrating. Project management spans the project lifecycle to establish defined goals and objectives with a single governance model. ANALYZING As part the of analysis phase, we review and analyze source workloads. There is tremendous flexibility in terms of migration methods supported including ExaData, Bare Metal instances, virtual machines, non-container to container database migration, 10g to 19c migration, and other permutations to meet your business needs. Our workload analysis allows us to quickly identify the right migration approach. Tooling provides the transparency to view the entire database and application estate and determine workloads with similar characteristics that should be grouped for migration.  PLANNING During estate planning, Oracle Consulting reviews capacity, identifies opportunities for consolidation, and creates consolidation rules. This helps us plan the appropriate target architecture, capacity pools, and load hardware. Once we have the picture of source and target, we conduct a project impact analysis and calculate target resources. Finally, we present the results of analysis and planning in a workshop, working with you to build an overall migration schedule and wave plan based on business priorities and constraints.  Together we identify any issues and refine our estate analysis and planning approach. MIGRATING After we complete our final review of the analysis and planning deliverables with you, the Soar platform conducts an automated capacity review, then verifies the security requirements and considerations before the migration begins. Our provisioning engine builds the target infrastructure based on consolidation rules and Oracle’s architecture standards and best practices. Then migration proceeds in three stages with real-time migration insights visible throughout execution: Migration Readiness: A process that verifies the source to target connectivity, security considerations, etc. Migration: The actual migration of databases or applications from source to target environment at the click of a button. Post Migration: validate the migration on target environment and provide support for production environments   Value of Migrating to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) Enables continuous innovation: once aligned with Oracle products and Cloud-enabled, your business is positioned to take advantage of continuous platform improvement for the modern business needs e.g. chatbot, analytics, and autonomous enterprise. New innovation is introduced every 90 days. Reduces security vulnerabilities: security vulnerabilities can put technical assets at risk and many businesses lack the capacity to address security given today’s constraints on IT talent. OCI provides a modern, secure architecture. Minimizes change impact: since Soar migrations are like for like and do not modify applications, there is minimal impact to business users when compared with a direct to SaaS model. The Oracle Consulting Difference Payment based on outcomes with no up-front costs: Soar fixed price offerings based on number of databases or application lifecycle environments makes pricing predictable. Customers pay for migration services at completion of successful migrations. There is no up-front cost. Improved accuracy: Automation and repeatable processes facilitate an accelerated move to Oracle’s Cloud Infrastructure in a predictable manner, reducing error associated with manual approaches.   Inline upgrade to OCI compliant database: Modernize with your upgrade to the Cloud by including a  database upgrade with your migration to achieve OCI compatibility.  Complete transparency: “what you see is what we see.” Tight alignment with product teams: One Oracle expedites resolution of any product issues reducing time to migrate and ensures post-migration success. Cloud Certified Consultants: knowledge of Cloud technology and Oracle products helps design your target infrastructure in a way that is high-performing, secure, and cost effective. If you want to learn more about Soar, you can reach out to soar-migrations_us@oracle.com. Join us at OpenWorld for the Oracle Soar sessions.  

AUTHORS: Dawn Austin, Senior Director, Cloud Migration, Oracle Consulting Ross Emerton, Senior Director, Cloud Migration, Oracle Consulting According to Cowen/Altman Vilandrie & Co 2018 Cloud Survey,...

Discover Autonomous: The Making of Oracle Consulting's Augmented Reality Experience at OpenWorld

AUTHOR: Dave Imperiale, North America Communications and Marketing, Oracle Consulting Kurt Bringsjord and David Tester joined Oracle as associate consultants in Oracle’s Austin, Texas Innovation Hub in June 2018 – their first jobs out of college. At a functional level their roles were straightforward: help Oracle customers with post sale implementations and configurations of IaaS and PaaS solutions. Little did they know, 18 months later, the majority of their time in the Hub would be spent working on innovative projects for Oracle and their customers. Nor could they have known that a quick text message would give them an early, career-defining opportunity to develop an augmented reality gaming experience that would be debuted at Oracle OpenWorld 2019 in front of thousands of customers. No pressure. The text was from Aaron Millstone, senior vice president, North America Cloud Consulting, to Beth Legate, who leads the Consulting “Hubsters” at the 10,000-person, state-of-the-art complex in Austin.  “See if you can get some of the hubsters to build a cool demo on ADW [Autonomous Data Warehouse] for [Oracle] OpenWorld.” Based on the creativity and ingenuity Bringsjord and Tester demonstrated on customer projects, Legate decided to offer them an opportunity. They ran with it. And they ran fast. In just 90 days, they designed Discover Autonomous: Augmented Real Estate, an experience which lets people fly through the cityscapes of San Francisco, NYC, and Austin to check real estate sales and rental pricing with real-time data, powered by the Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse. “We knew this would be a big data visualization project powered by ADW. Once we designed everything we set up our instance with 90 tables and 10,000 pieces of open source real estate data going back 30 years in each of the three cities…locations, rental and sale prices, price per square foot, etc. We loaded San Fran first, and were able to automatically scale for Austin and NYC,” said Bringsjord. Tester added: “We are not DBAs. We had never touched any of this technology three months prior to completion, including ADW. Now all of the data is updated and all of the tasks are performed autonomously.” They’re being a tad modest. Despite never having used any of the following hardware or software before, here’s what they accomplished in those 90 days: Went through the discovery and ideation process on what to build to showcase Autonomous Data Warehouse at Oracle OpenWorld. Built a custom, desktop computer with graphic cards. They went out and bought all of the components themselves—they couldn’t do what they needed to do on their corporate-issued laptops. Chose to use Magic Leap AR Headsets after appropriate due diligence, and then became approved creators by that company. Implemented, learned, and used the Unity game engine to build 3-D models, game logic, and design the experience. Became certified on Autonomous Data Warehouse. What’s next for these guys? Tester says: “I’ll be getting back to the Hub right after OpenWorld. I still spend half of my time with customers on implementing their Cloud solutions, surrounded by our diverse group of peers who have expertise in just about every technology skill set you can imagine.” David and Kurt are both looking forward to their first Oracle OpenWorld, where they will be stationed front and center showcasing their Augmented Reality experiences at the Oracle Consulting Lounge on the 3rd floor of Moscone West in San Francisco. Experiences. Plural. Apparently, they didn’t think the real estate demo was enough…so they also built an interactive Autonomous Database game to educate customers on the platform. All attendees are welcome to come by, check out these unique experiences, and meet these guys in person.

AUTHOR: Dave Imperiale, North America Communications and Marketing, Oracle Consulting Kurt Bringsjord and David Tester joined Oracle as associate consultants in Oracle’s Austin, Texas Innovation Hub in...

Future State

When it comes to send times, there’s no ‘one size fits all’ solution

Author : Simon Johnston | Strategic Consultant, Oracle Marketing Cloud Email has evolved significantly from the early days of ‘blast and go’. Dynamic content allows us to personalise with ease: we can trigger real-time emails based on site actions, whilst multi-variant testing allows us to optimise like never before. But has the way that we choose our send times really changed that much? We’re not referring here to triggered email campaigns like ‘abandon carts’ but to high-volume promotional campaigns, often called Business as Usual (BAU) emails. These are the emails which, like it or not, bring in the majority of email-generated revenue for retailers. They are typically scheduled to go at times the marketer determines, rather than by reacting to a customer interaction.   Timing affects placement The email inbox is a pretty busy place. There are promotional emails fighting for attention against social notifications, family messages and the occasional bit of spam which slips past the watchful eyes of the Internet Service Provider’s (ISP) inbox filter. Inboxes saw an 18% increase in email volume between 2016 and 2017. As a marketer you want to get your message seen. Sending at 9:00 a.m. may work just fine for some of your subscriber base, but there may be others who are still asleep (shift workers for example), and by the time they check their phone at lunchtime your email will be buried. This burying effect can be seen in the ‘unique open’ rate decline immediately after sending an email. The below example from a leading retailer shows how opens are distributed from the time emails are sent. 28% of all unique opens occur within the first hour 70% of all opens occur within the first 8 hours 83% of all opened emails are opened within 24 hours      Defining ‘best’ In my first week at Oracle I remember asking a colleague what was typically the best time to send a B2C email. I had seen a few studies online and wanted to get the benefit of his wisdom on this topic. Instead of replying “Tuesday at 10 a.m.” or “Friday at lunchtime” he simply asked: “Best for what?” He was right. This is a crucial question you need to ask yourself as a marketer. What are you aiming to achieve by segmenting your send time? Are you looking for the best time to minimise unsubscribes? The best time to generate incremental website traffic? The best time to improve open or click-through rates? Or the best time for lifting page views? Not all of these considerations are in exact alignment.  However, the further down the funnel you go the harder it is to optimise with clear winners, which is why most marketers tend to optimise for top-of-funnel actions like unique opens or click activity. It is recommended that you consider the impact of your activity outside of the email channel, and also to study your web analytics reporting as a whole to understand the real impact of your tests.   Approaches to determining send time Optimising your send time is the oft-ignored ‘4th element’ of segmentation. You’ve got the right targeting (Who), the right personalisation (What), the right channel (Where), and now you want the right time (When). In our experience there are three broad approaches marketers can take to determine send time: 1. Basic batch The entire batch of emails is sent at the same time, and the send time is usually determined based upon assumptions or convenience. An assumption-based approach might be that the audience are working professionals: therefore, emailing during peak commuting time is unwise, so instead we send at lunchtime. A convenience-based approach usually centres on sending at a set time based on established practice: “That’s what we’ve always done.”  A brand typically defines a common-sense blackout period during which they definitely do not want to send, for example between midnight and 5 a.m. This is mostly to avoid fury from subscribers woken up by a notification (if they have sound enabled). More sophisticated marketers will use their web analytics to identify peaks and troughs in the daily traffic pattern, and use those to decide whether to send when activity is high (to add to already piqued interest) or when activity is naturally low (to try and drive incremental visits). Good: Marketer convenience. The recipient can anticipate receiving messages at a certain time. Bad: Will not suit every subscriber on a list. Might be the best time for a particular campaign, but not for the individual. 2. Batch-delivery testing Using the Responsys Program or Eloqua Campaign Canvas, marketers can split their audience and route them in batches to multiple send times. You start by defining a ‘no send’ period and then test everything outside of that. With large-enough audiences this could be each of the hours, or you might wish to target smaller audiences initially to identify a larger four-hour window which delivers best results before refining. Good: Specific to your audience. Bad: Iterative testing takes time, but is still a ‘one size fits all’ campaign-level optimisation.  3. Algorithmic send-time optimisation (STO) Both of the above approaches are campaign-level time optimisation. They aim to answer the question: “When is the best time to send my campaign to my entire audience?” The other approach is subscriber-level time optimisation” “When is the best time to send this campaign to an individual?” Subscriber-level solutions typically run historic engagement data through an algorithmic model to calculate the best time for an individual subscriber to be sent an email. In Oracle’s STO model all subscribers who have past behavioural data are run through a proprietary algorithm and assigned to 1 of 24 segments representing the hours of the day. For those with no values, a default send time can be chosen in the program settings. A data table holds the ideal time values for each subscriber by day, and these are referenced by an STO timer in the Responsys Program. This avoids the need to have 24 branches routing to each hour, keeping program designs clean and efficient. There is also the option to use the STO functionality for serving multiple time zones. If you have a global sales event launching at 9:00 a.m. across several countries, you can manually upload a time-value equivalent to 9:00 a.m. in the Accounts Time Zone setting to the STO table and then launch through Program. The STO node in Responsys is free to use either with your own Send Time Algorithm (if you have a data science team who can process this data) or with Oracle’s tried and tested model (which is an additional license option). Good: Automated, subscriber level. Based on actual behaviour. Can aid in deliverability. Bad: Does not suit every type of campaign you may want to send. Which should you choose? For marketers sending at scale on a regular basis it makes sense to think seriously about investing in an algorithmic subscriber-level solution. We have typically seen between 6% to 10% lifts in unique open rates for clients with STO, and some seeing lifts as high as 30%. Uplifts in unique open rates bring with it lifts in unique click-through rates, and that waterfall effect can be felt all the way down the funnel to conversion. “The Oracle Responsys Send-Time Optimisation solution is driving at least a 10% increase in response rates every time we’ve tested it, and as high as 30% increases.” -VP of Marketing at a large omni-channel department store retailer   Is STO the best solution for every campaign? Not always. Certain campaigns are time-critical: a 6-hour flash sale, for example, would not be a suitable campaign for using STO. Consider your sending window and ask if the last recipient has enough time to respond and whether or not it’s fair to recipients.  Many customers work with Oracle Marketing Cloud Professional Services teams to answer these questions, so why not get in touch today to see how you can benefit?   For more details on Oracle Marketing Cloud, Click here & if you would like to get in touch with us, visit us here       About the author: Simon has worked with the Oracle Strategic Services team for the last 5 years, supporting retailers with CRM initiatives covering acquisition, conversion and retention.

Author : Simon Johnston | Strategic Consultant, Oracle Marketing Cloud Email has evolved significantly from the early days of ‘blast and go’. Dynamic content allows us to personalise with ease: we...

Oracle Cloud Consulting Advisory: HOW Do You Get to Cloud?

  AUTHORS: Mike Owens, Group Vice President of Oracle Cloud Advisory Rob Rowello, Vice President of Oracle Cloud Advisory IT organizations today are at a crossroads. Most enterprise CIOs have already begun their journey to the cloud over the past decade by moving non-mission critical applications such as custom development, CRM, HCM, email, desktop apps, file sharing, and collaboration. What remains are the “toughest nuts to crack:” applications that are highly customized and drive your mission-critical workloads. The operational benefits of migrating these often-complex workloads are well understood—increased agility, elasticity, and innovation, along with reductions in capital and operating expenses. However, the journey to the cloud for these workloads is not a clear one, and there are many paths to consider before you embark. Oracle Consulting works closely with our clients to identify the right path. In most cases, our clients operate in hybrid environments and will end up having workloads distributed across IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS. Our primary objective is to work with you to assess your current application landscape and identify the right “roadmap” for your journey that minimizes risk and accelerates time to value—without disrupting your day-to-day business. Managing and maintaining a cloud service requires a different way of working. Your culture has to be ready for the move. Our most successful clients possess the following attributes: Strong sponsorship from business owners to drive innovation and maintain focus on results Governance from both IT and lines of business to encourage speedy and collaborative decision-making Focus on building internal capabilities to support new operating models An environment that avoids complex processes and supports change Agile approach to delivery of releases, which facilitates a repeating cycle of innovation Optimal use of self-service support tools and resources Oracle Consulting has a proven and straightforward methodology to enable your journey to the cloud…quickly. We begin by refining your cloud strategy, with a specific focus on how Oracle’s Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) and PaaS services can best enable your workloads. We see that most companies have and will continue to have a multi-cloud strategy. Our approach determines how to work within your environment. This includes leveraging Oracle’s recent cloud interoperability announcement with the Microsoft Azure cloud service. Next, we examine your current IT operating model to determine your “Cloud Readiness.”  And finally, we use these inputs to develop a change impact assessment and a customized transformation roadmap to the cloud.   We have a dedicated team of industry-leading architects, developers, and data migration specialists to assist in executing this roadmap. Oracle Consulting leverages our proven migration accelerator called “Soar” to move workloads to the Oracle Cloud. We leverage our automation and direct relationships with Oracle Product Management to help migrate Oracle and non-Oracle databases and applications. Our Soar approach and engagement is focused on your outcomes. Our migrations are executed with a fixed price AND we don’t bill the customer until the migration is complete. This is our “Customer Business Outcomes” approach—a clear commitment to customer success.   Are you and your organization at the crossroads in your cloud journey? Oracle Cloud Advisory can help your organization with a clear roadmap, supported by our migration and cloud services capabilities to deliver the value where and when you need it. How do you start? Contact our members of the Cloud Advisory (na-cloud-advisory_us@oracle.com) team and let us help map your journey. And check out our Oracle OpenWorld session How to Build an Effective Cloud Strategy on Monday, September 16th from 2:45pm to 3:30pm in Moscone West, 3007B.  

  AUTHORS: Mike Owens, Group Vice President of Oracle Cloud Advisory Rob Rowello, Vice President of Oracle Cloud Advisory IT organizations today are at a crossroads. Most enterprise CIOs have already...

From Grad to Great: UKIE Consulting Graduate Programme Shaping the Future

Author: Ana Perez, Senior Director, Oracle UKIE Consulting The last few years has seen the huge changes in the Technology world and tremendous growth of Cloud business. The Oracle Consulting Graduate Scheme, which has been extremely successful, aims to train and develop the next generation of Oracle Consultants to support the growth of the business and help us to keep up with the increased demand. The scheme consists in a 2-year programme which involves activities to create a highly engaged graduate community that promotes career development. Recent graduates join from universities from all over the UK to join one of our practices which include Applications, Technology, Business Development and project management.   ‘We believe that the best way to learn is by doing. So our graduates join projects and customer work after a short training period. They are able to add value from day one. We continue to support their development with a mix of classroom and on the job training. Our training programme focusses both on the technical and the soft skills required to become a successful Consultant’  Ana Perez, Senior Director, Oracle UKIE Consulting   The graduate programme is always seeking for the next future consultant, whether it is in Apps or Tech. If you are or know a recent graduate aspiring a career in tech who is enthusiastic, motivated and highly passionate about being in an interactive environment.   Please get in touch with ana.perez@oracle.com.

Author: Ana Perez, Senior Director, Oracle UKIE Consulting The last few years has seen the huge changes in the Technology world and tremendous growth of Cloud business. The Oracle Consulting Graduate...

Future State

Accelerate your journey to the Cloud with Oracle Soar

Unlock the power of the Cloud for your ERP, HCM and EPM needs with Oracle’s innovative Cloud Upgrade service.   Oracle Consulting uses the power of innovation to deliver an automated route to the Cloud for our existing On-Premises customers, with our confidence in success built-in to ensure our customers unlock their value from Cloud as quickly as possible. We recognise that our customers have invested their trust in Oracle’s On-Premises applications to run their business, and our Soar Upgrade service deploys innovative tooling to extract the most value from this investment and then automate the tasks of moving to the Cloud.   At the same time, we combine this unique tooling with our unrivalled experience in Oracle Cloud go-lives to move our customers to standard features in the Cloud, simplifying their world and making it easier to benefit from regular Cloud updates after they are live. Our Soar Upgrade service includes packaged innovation that helps our customers to successfully adopt the Cloud for their organisation.  Innovation with a purpose, delivered as part of your Upgrade. All of this is underpinned by our confidence in success.  Our unique Soar Upgrade proposition offers a fixed price fee, with payment on success – a successful go live in the Oracle Cloud. Learn more about the Soar Upgrade here or contact your local Oracle Sales Representative to begin your accelerated journey to the Cloud.  

Unlock the power of the Cloud for your ERP, HCM and EPM needs with Oracle’s innovative Cloud Upgrade service.   Oracle Consulting uses the power of innovation to deliver an automated route to the Cloud...

Future State

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure breaking ground in the Utilities Sector in EMEA

Author: Bill Trapp, Consulting Enterprise Architect, Oracle UKIE Oracle set an ambitious goal in building its second-generation cloud infrastructure: to create an infrastructure that matches and surpasses the performance, control and governance of enterprise datacentres. Delivering the scale, elasticity, and cost-savings of public clouds when a UK utility company decided to modernise the hosting for their enterprise applications, the customer chose Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI).  The result, Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, is built from the ground up to be an Enterprise Cloud, equally capable of running traditional multi-tiered enterprise applications, high-performance workloads, and modern serverless and container-based architectures. This customer has requirements that perfectly line up with OCI’s capabilities as they have a large investment in mission critical applications including high performance requirements.  The perfect partner to help them realise their goals in leveraging the Cloud is Oracle Consulting.  OC provided a methodology that helped the customer migrate their applications reliably.  We worked with their application support teams to ensure the application teams had everything they needed for the complete recovery of the applications and especially the integrations that tie the applications together.     The customer used OC to help with migrations from non-Cloud hosting environments like AIX converting them to Linux, plus they had a large Windows estate.  OC migrated over 150 Oracle databases and were able to upgrade many of them eliminating technical debt that existed since their last datacentre migration five years ago.  Oracle Consulting’s True Cloud Method for Migrations provided a standardised repeatable model for the programme to follow ensuring successful application migrations while modernising their infrastructure and taking advantage of the new Cloud Native capabilities in OCI.  The price points for OCI offers substantial savings compared to their legacy hosting model and the use of automation and orchestration further cut cost out of the migration and endures to minimise costs for the target operating model for the future. Oracle Consulting can help you achieve substantial results by helping you move your application estate to the Oracle Cloud.   If you want to find out more please get in touch with our team now jim.muir@oracle.com – Consulting IaaS, PaaS & Integration Practice Leader, Oracle UKIE paul.crisp@oracle.com – Consulting Client Solution Director, Oracle UKIE

Author: Bill Trapp, Consulting Enterprise Architect, Oracle UKIE Oracle set an ambitious goal in building its second-generation cloud infrastructure: to create an infrastructure that matches...

LifeScan Ensures Successful Divestiture with Move to Cloud Implemented by Oracle Consulting

“We wanted ONE partner to provide the whole range of cloud services including infrastructure, platform, applications and professional services. We wanted simple and less complex…that's why we selected Oracle.” – Gilbert Torrance, IT Director, LifeScan, Inc. LifeScan, Inc., a diagnostic systems manufacturer with a blood glucose monitoring brand called OneTouch®, needed to move to cloud in a six-month timeframe in order to enable a divestiture from Johnson & Johnson (J&J) Company. This meant that all of their on-premises applications within J&J data centers needed to be externally hosted in the cloud in order for the divestiture to be successful. LifeScan turned to Oracle because they wanted one partner that could provide the entire lifecycle of cloud services including infrastructure, platform, applications and professional services. Oracle Consulting was selected as the implementation partner due to expert content knowledge on Oracle Cloud products, which provided confidence to LifeScan that the move to cloud would happen within the aggressive timeframe. Oracle Consulting was selected for two critical projects: Migration of JD Edwards ERP to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) by Oracle Consulting Technology Implementation Oracle Procurement Cloud and Financials Cloud by Oracle Consulting Applications “Oracle Consulting helped move the entire back office to the cloud freeing LifeScan to innovate as a standalone company.”  – Gilbert Torrance, IT Director, LifeScan, Inc. The Oracle Cloud platform with JD Edwards and Procurement Cloud will empower LifeScan to transform their business by freeing valuable resources to focus on the creation of innovative products and services that help save lives. To learn more about how Oracle Consulting can help you move to the cloud, please visit www.oracle.com/consulting.  Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Contact us at ask-oracleconsulting_us@oracle.com.

“We wanted ONEpartner to provide the whole range of cloud services including infrastructure, platform, applications and professional services. We wanted simple and less complex…that's why we...

Future State

Oracle Cloud Application Migration: Are You Ready to Soar?

This post was written by Mike Owens, Vice President, Cloud Advisory Practice, and Mary Melgaard, Group Vice President, Cloud Migration Services. Do you ever feel like you've been left behind in the on-premises world while everyone else has moved to the cloud? You want to move your applications to the cloud, but which of the many paths is the right one for you?   Moving Oracle Applications such as E-Business Suite, JD Edwards, PeopleSoft, Siebel, and Hyperion to the cloud can introduce a complex landscape of alternatives and choices. It's important to select a partner who has the vision, experience, tools, and commitment to help you create your cloud adoption and migration strategy, and guide your migration to its successful conclusion. Join Oracle Consulting for our May 7 webinar on cloud application migration, in which we explain our cloud adoption and strategy methodology: Vision, Frame, and Mobilize.  Vision Establish your vision: Gather and organize key data about applications, infrastructure, and IT costs. Establish your project and transformation governance plan, and conduct a visioning workshop to ensure alignment with stakeholders. What are your business and technology objectives for your Oracle Cloud migration? What are the underlying drivers for your success? Organize for transformation: Compile and analyze an application inventory subset, build the business case, and identify prototype applications to migrate. What are the common characteristics or unique business requirements for your application portfolio? Frame Frame your path forward: Based on the application subset that you identified, determine the appropriate cloud deployment model for your applications, addressing regulatory, legal, and privacy considerations. Given your requirements, will you need multiple cloud vendors, or can one provider fulfill most of your business and workload objectives? Mobilize Map your journey: Determine the activities and actions needed to drive the migration, validate the business case, and reconcile any conflicts. Is this a "move and improve" initiative that will create a new way of working by changing the look and feel of your applications? Or, is this a technical move that lifts workloads "as-is" from on-premises to the cloud with limited impact on the business users? Mobilize for the future: Orchestrate the final application modernization, migration, and transformation analysis. Sequence the initiatives, and incorporate in-flight and planned projects. Develop your cloud transformation roadmap. What internal and external resource commitments are required to successfully migrate, and how will you manage the organizational change? Does the subscription include services that reduce your internal staffing requirements, and how will you communicate and adapt to these changes? Soar After your strategy is in place, flawless execution is critical. A strategic approach coupled with a partner that automates cloud migration can help to simplify the process of moving your applications to cloud. Leveraging the Oracle Soar methodology, you can move Oracle and non-Oracle applications to the cloud rapidly and efficiently with near-zero downtime. Join Us Are you ready to choose a path for cloud application migration that is right for you? Are you ready to soar? Join our webinar on May 7 at 9 a.m. PT to: Identify best practices for your cloud migration strategy Understand the paths for moving applications to the cloud Learn from real-life customer examples for moving E-Business Suite, JD Edwards, and third-party applications to Oracle Cloud Understand how to leverage Oracle Soar to rapidly and efficiently move your applications to Oracle Cloud with near-zero downtime. Check out Oracle Infrastructure Blogs. To learn more about how Oracle Consulting can help you move to the cloud, please visit www.oracle.com/consulting/technology.  Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Contact us at ask-oracleconsulting_us@oracle.com.

This post was written by Mike Owens, Vice President, Cloud Advisory Practice, and Mary Melgaard, Group Vice President, Cloud Migration Services. Do you ever feel like you've been left behind in the...

The Art of Active Listening: 3 Questions with Josh Burch

None of us emerged from childhood without being told “you need to listen!” It’s one of the earliest messages that we receive in life—and it’s culturally universal. Listen to your parents. Listen to your teachers. Listen to your elders. Undoubtedly, some of us as children were better at it than others. If your parents still use family gatherings as a forum to gleefully recount your youthful disregard of their instructions, you’re not alone. But how good of a listener are you now? In the consulting business, there is no greater skill to possess. Winning our clients’ trust—and their business—requires us to not just hear what they say, but to demonstrate that we understand what they need. One of our Oracle Applications Consulting client partners, Josh Burch, consistently embodies the critical importance of active listening. We asked Josh to share his best practices for quickly earning the confidence of clients and colleagues through skillful listening and insightful responses. Q: What advice would you give to someone who asked you how to engage in an active listening process that earns the trust and confidence of clients and colleagues? A. First, make sure that you’re responding in the affirmative when someone is talking to you. Whether that’s a nod of the head, or verbally saying “I understand,” you’re relaying to them that you affirmatively hear them, and it instills confidence. I also happen to be a massive note-taker. Maybe that’s because I have a really bad memory, so I need to do it. But I just write notes. I jot them down. I make sure I revisit them. I type them back up. I archive them. I revisit them before the next meeting so that there’s continuity. You don't ever want a client to feel like they’re telling you something for the second time. You may think it’s a subtle thing, but it’s not lost on clients. It’s one of the biggest obstacles to success you can have. If a client has to repeat something, especially a central request, then you’re putting yourself at a clear disadvantage because you’re indicating that you’re just not getting it. A third critical component is not being afraid to literally say, “Let me make sure I heard you correctly. This is what you’re telling me.” Use those words and read your notes back to your client. If you got something wrong, edit your notes on the spot. If you got it right, then it’s written in stone, and it’ll hopefully live the life cycle of the project. Even if you repeat it back to them word by word, you’re indicating that you’re thinking about exactly what they told you. This sets you up to move into the advisory role. You may respond, “Okay. I fully agree with you. This is how we can move forward.” But it may be an opportunity to say, “Okay. I did hear you correctly. Have you thought about this instead?” If I hear something that I strongly feel is not in the client’s best interest, it’s appropriate—and necessary—to gracefully and elegantly present another solution or alternative. I’ve framed this in the context of client interactions, but all of these practices—affirmative responses, thorough note-taking, confirming what you’ve heard, and speaking up to suggest alternative solutions—apply to every business meeting. It’s important to be as buttoned-up in internal meetings as it is with clients, and I think we can overlook that too often. Q. Are you a student of body language in a face-to-face meeting? What steps do you take to “read the room”? A. I’m huge into that kind of observation, maybe to an extreme degree. My wife always laughs because I ask her after we go somewhere, “Did you see this? Did you see this person do that?” And she's like, “What are you talking about?”  When it comes to reading the room, the first step is understanding who the key stakeholders and decision-makers are. I generally take my cues from their demeanor. If they’re relaxed, and laid back, and start off with a joke or something lighthearted, it gives insight into what your approach should be. Some of the other people in the room may be more technical and regimented in what they want to talk about, and they want things well defined. That’s going to result in a much more formal and straightforward conversation.  You need to address them accordingly. Body language is a big part of that. You can pick up on cues by just looking across the table. How are they sitting? How are they responding? In short, be observant of the people who are running the meeting and mirror their tone and demeanor as much as possible. Q: Do you have any tips for reading a room when there isn't a room? What cues can you pick up on over the phone or in emails? A. With regards to email, people have different preferences that you can pick up on. Personally, I like bullets, and succinct, to-the-point, informational pieces as opposed to paragraph form. I think you can often interpret those preferences in an email thread—who needs things spelled out for them and who just wants bullet points—and provide it accordingly. Oftentimes, a client does need a longer narrative that’s explanatory of the work that we’re doing. In those cases, my advice is that’s it’s always better to give them more than you think they need. They can decide what pieces to edit, or how to escalate it. You don't want to make the client come back to you two or three times to get information. Trying to judge a room over the phone is by far, in my mind, the most difficult. You can’t see facial expressions, you can’t see body language, you can’t see how attentive they are. They may be multitasking. They may be at a coffee shop. You have no idea. That said, you can generally get an idea of who you need to address—and how—based on who is asking questions or speaking on a call. A client may have eight people on a call. It quickly becomes evident who the main players are or who your counterpart is. They don’t have to be a senior stakeholder. It may be the person who’s running quarterback for the client who’s asking for all the information. After a big conference call, my advice is to schedule a quick one-on-one call with your key point-person on the client side to review your notes and action items. It may sound inefficient to have a second call to go over something you just talked about. But I truly believe in the long run, it saves you time. If something was lost in translation on a conference call, a 10-minute review phone call will prevent significant problems days or weeks down the road.  How do you practice active listening at work? Give us your best advice in the comments section!

None of us emerged from childhood without being told “you need to listen!” It’s one of the earliest messages that we receive in life—and it’s culturally universal. Listen to your parents. Listen to...

Future State

Modern Marketing is the science of Customer Experience

Author: Nick Fleetwood, Director of Strategy and Analysis, Oracle Marketing Cloud EMEA Do you know the median tenure for a CMO is less than 3 years? In the last five years there has been a shift towards the CMO owning the revenue and growth metrics for the business that are driven by acquisition, customer value and retention marketing activities. CMOs are being asked to be the ‘Silver Bullet’ for CEOs as they seek to rapidly change or maintain business performance. Given the pressure and the reality of the length of the tenure, the challenge is always there to find the solution to rapidly increasing the return on investment from marketing spend: to find the unique combination of the right resources, strategy and technology that can rapidly adapt to the market conditions to get your products into the hands of the right people at the most efficient cost that can drive growth and average customer value. As Director of Strategy and Analytics for Oracle Marketing Cloud, my role and the role of my team has been to aid the acceleration of our client’s maturity in terms of their approaches to utilising marketing technology to achieve the strongest impact on their KPIs. In the last 3 years our engagements have been driven by one aspect more than any other: Customer Experience. What has become clear to me, is that marketing is now an output of effective Customer Experience. In fact you could say it is the science behind Customer Experience, as CX becomes focused on rapidly executing campaigns and strategies against measurable KPIs and then realising the value of those experiments across the marketing ecosystem as efficiently as possible. Framing the science Based on that concept we have been developing a new framework that has been focused on accelerating Customer Experience by focusing on the 3 fundamental factors that are driving modern CX: Technology: The age of point solutions operating individually in silos is now behind us. The focus is on an integrated suite of technologies that are driving a new set of marketing disciplines that are entirely focused on achieving seamless Customer Experience. Technology, however, is also moving faster than ever before so choosing the right technologies and adapting to market innovations will be the differential in winning the customer. Data: We are all coming to terms with the fact that data will be a central pillar of any marketing conversation for the rest of our lives. One challenge is defining what elements of the data strategy should be the responsibility of the CMO and which fall to the CTO or CDO? Taking the science analogy, data is a variable which needs to be controlled to be valuable to the CMO. In this instance we should use data to analyse performance, model future behavior and drive insight into our customers. The key is asking the right questions to ensure data provides the right opportunities for us in Marketing. Customer: It goes without saying that the Customer is central to Customer Experience. The need to have clarity on our target personas at an individual level, through a combination of persona driven marketing and behavioral real-time responsive cross-channel campaigns, are the key driving forces for many marketing teams at the current moment.   The Accelerator Model In order to display this, we think of Customer Experience as a DNA Helix with three elements – Technology, Data and Customer. This model is designed to not only show how each integral element of the Strategic Accelerator model aligns, but also to show how they flow together. Any of the individual elements can be treated in isolation to provide maturity in a specific area – for example a CMO who wishes to focus on the value of Data Modelling – but there will be a natural next step in the cycle for the CMO to take should they wish to continue. Let’s go through an illustration of the Accelerator model from end-to-end:   Technology is the starting point as so often a period of acceleration is driven by one of two events, a new technology providing new opportunities to the marketing team or the evaluation of an existing, possibly under-performing technology that is part of your mar-tech stack. Our advice is to take a Best Practice approach to evaluating how you are using your technology both in isolation and as a functioning whole within your ecosystem. This will drive new engagement activities at a strategic and campaign level for your marketing team. A new technology will then create an effect of re-evaluating your Marketing Disciplines. How does the new technology impact your website optimisation, your marketing automation programs or your digital advertising? As a result the opportunity comes to benchmark yourself against in each discipline in the context of your new technology to shape your approach to elevating your maturity in this area. Any new technology requires evaluation in the context of the Industry Trends and Innovations which are impacting your business. How are challengers in your market adopting new technologies to shape their go to market and reach your customer base more effectively? Is that an opportunity which is both relevant and cost effective for your business to pursue? This new technology now needs to be allied to your Business Objectives and KPIs to align how it impacts measurable performance at every level of your business. This will entail understanding the interplay between campaign level metrics (open rate, CTR, conversion rate), marketing level metrics (new customers, average customer value) and business metrics (revenue, growth etc). Analysis of your marketing data at a campaign, channel and holistic marketing level becomes the key measure for understanding the value of marketing technology, disciplines and marketing performance. This analysis should allow constant re-evaluation of spend and investment as well as putting Return on Investment on strategic initiatives. What opportunities does our data present in terms of Modelling to provide clear answers on customer’s behaviour and preferences. Can we use our data to segment our customer base into self-ordering groups or propensity to purchase or next best action? This is the clearest way for us to bridge the gap from Data to Customers. Using Data we can gain a clear view on who our Customer are in terms of data points and logical groupings, but until we start to build their Personas we are unable to use them to innovate around customer experience. Knowing our customer persona’s motivations, needs and influences allows us to build Customer Journey Mapping that not only recognises the reality of our current interactions with our customers, but also create innovative CX around moments that matter and understand the impact that innovation will have on KPIs and strategic initiatives. Finally the Customer Journey requires a consistent Digital Experience which examines how effectively your creative approach both delivers your brand identity and drives customers to complete your desired action in the acquisition or retention funnels. Which leads us back to Technology as you use the Customer Journey to understand which gaps now exist in your marketing architecture that are required to be filled in order to achieve the Customer Journey you have mapped out. In this way your customers inform your technology choices. This model is designed to be a virtuous circle with technology creating data modelling that drives new customer experience that creates need for enhanced technology. Those companies that embrace the acceleration model will be able to not only adopt new technologies faster and innovate new customer experiences more effectively, but they will also be able to measure the impact on those technologies and shape their approach through a robust KPI driven series of initiatives. Read more on Oracle Marketing here  Also, don't forget to read the blog post on What if e-mail died? You can contact us directly: Email or DM us on Twitter: @OracleConsult

Author: Nick Fleetwood, Director of Strategy and Analysis, Oracle Marketing Cloud EMEA Do you know the median tenure for a CMO is less than 3 years? In the last five years there has been a shift...

City of Memphis Partners with Oracle Consulting to Become a 21st Century Model HR Organization

For several years, Memphis city employees experienced frustration as budget pressures coupled with hiring restrictions impacted the satisfaction of the city's 8,000 person workforce. Private-sector veteran, Alexandria Smith, was hired by Mayor Jim Strickland as the new chief HR officer to improve the morale of employees and enhance the delivery of services to more than 652,000 citizens. Chief Smith's vision was to become a 21st-century model HR organization by improving recruiting, training and benefits for the city's workforce. One of her first decisions was to makeover the city’s HR functions while driving innovation and adoption of HR best practices. To ensure success, Chief Smith turned to Oracle and Oracle Consulting to replace its legacy HR applications with modern, cloud-based Oracle HCM and Oracle Talent Acquisition Cloud (OTAC). Oracle Consulting was selected as the implementation partner to enable the city’s journey to Oracle Cloud. Oracle Consulting worked with the city’s team to implement Oracle HCM Cloud modules including Core HR, Compensation, Performance and Goals Management, Succession Planning, Talent Review, Learn, Profile Management Taleo and Benefits and Absence. "As an implementation partner, Oracle Consulting was willing to listen and be accountable and adaptable throughout our implementation journey. They had experience with Oracle products, brought best practices to the table, and helped us every step of the way.” — Alex Smith, Chief HR Officer City of Memphis The new platform positions the HR team to recruit, hire and onboard new staff more efficiently through social sourcing and workflow. Some of the outcomes of this transformation include: Added 419 police recruits since 2016, resulting in a net gain in officers last year for the first time in seven years. Successfully recruited 363 new firefighters. Reduced attrition among police personnel by 25%, through a combination of improved compensation and benefits, management training opportunities, retention bonuses, and employee appreciation events. Increased employee engagement by 14 percentage points, as measured by an independent survey of employee opinions about city leadership, culture, and resources. Chief Smith recently elaborated on their transformation in Forbes - click here to read the full story. Visit www.oracle.com/consulting for more information. Email us at ask-oracleconsulting_us@oracle.com

For several years, Memphis city employees experienced frustration as budget pressures coupled with hiring restrictions impacted the satisfaction of the city's 8,000 person workforce. Private-sector...

Future State

China - A Marketer's Dream

Author : Phoenix HY, Associate Consultant, Oracle Consulting According to the statistical report on internet development in China published in January 2018, as of December 2017 China had 772 million ‘netizens’ and growing. To put this into perspective, the UK population in 2016 was 65.6 million. With these numbers it is no surprise that companies are making it a priority to enter this huge market. So what do I need to consider when marketing in China? 1. The two Ws - WeChat and Weibo WeChat recorded a billion monthly users in March, that’s right a billion. WeChat has the capability for a user to do pretty much any desired action they want to online: banking, call a cab, shop, transfer money to friends, the list goes on. It’s pretty much all of our everyday apps rolled into one. With this huge user base and the various capabilities to reach the consumer in all these ways it is now absolutely essential for companies entering the Chinese market to be on WeChat. Weibo is the largest social network in China, consider it their equivalent to a Facebook and Twitter fusion, and so is a great tool for building brand awareness. The same rules apply for marketing on social media on Weibo, with the ability to target audiences with mass amounts of data about each consumer at your disposal. A differentiator for Weibo is that it allows payments, so you are able to sell online in the app and offline using QR codes, which is common online consumer behaviour in China. Brand trust is even more prominent in China, especially when it comes to ‘foreign’ companies entering the market; thus a solid profile, content, verification, and connecting with the right influencers is even more important.   2. Utilise the B.A.T mobile Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent are the 3 largest players who dominate the digital marketing space, especially on mobile. Baidu is the most used search engine in China, Alibaba dominates e-commerce, and Tencent is the most valuable company which owns WeChat. All three companies have different apps and sometimes different app stores, where their apps do not interact with each other. Despite this users commonly have apps from each company, so as consumers are on all 3 platforms, so should companies entering this market, with each managed independently.    3. KOLs – Key Opinion Leaders China is more prone to influence than the western markets when it comes to KOLs. Thus it is now one of the most recommended ‘marketing tools’ where most agencies based in china are pushing companies to utilise. It is of course vital that the KOL you choose matches your brand and appeals to your target audience. Michael Kors has done this particular well, bringing in Yang Mi as their brand ambassador who boasts a following of 90.9 million on Weibo at the time of this post. She has featured in Vogue, Grazia and Elle, matching perfectly in line with the Michael Kors brand. They have also recently released a full WeChat store featuring a bag collaborated with Yang Mi.   4. The great firewall There are more than 60 internet restrictions in China, and the control of the internet is ever growing. Due to this China has not been accustomed to using Google, Facebook or Twitter and now have their own equivalents. So on top of understanding the platforms to utilise in China, it’s important to consider the laws too. As this can easily go wrong, for example Mercedes-Benz was forced to delete the below post for quoting the Dalai Lama:     This went against the law in china of “Advertisements shall not harm the dignity or interests of China”, and despite China not allowing access of Instagram, there was still enough outcry for this post to be deleted and an apology was made on Weibo. This shows when entering this market we need to fully understand what the laws and restrictions are, before it becomes a blocker to being successful in China.   5. Understand the culture and the language Part of understanding the Chinese culture is the significant periods of the year: Lunar New Year, Qingming festival, national day the list goes on. This will inform companies on when to increase promotional activity and tailor accordingly. This leads on to Cyber Days, which in China are different to the west. The most notable one is Singles’ Day, where in 2017 on Alibaba’s e-commerce platforms alone $25 billion was spent; a substantial amount more than in the US on black Friday. Language is often overlooked when moving into new markets, this can lead into embarrassing and costly mistakes. Nike made a huge error: Alone the two words mean great things… together however it translated to “getting fat”. This illustrates the importance of having a local person translate, when it comes to any promotion, Google translate is not sufficient enough.   References WeChat hits one billion monthly users - are you one of them? Statistical Report on Internet Development in China Jan 2018 Chinese marketing trends in 2018: What Western brands need to know Marketing in China: a five-step guide SCMP Forbes   Learn more at: oracle.com/marketingcloud

Author : Phoenix HY, Associate Consultant, Oracle Consulting According to the statistical report on internet development in China published in January 2018, as of December 2017 China had 772 million...

Future State

Oracle Consulting Supports Diversity and Inclusion at the Human Rights Campaign 2018 Gala Celebration in Boston

Oracle was a VIP sponsor for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) thirty-seventh annual Gala Dinner in Boston on November 17th. The HRC is the largest national LGBTQ civil rights organization. HRC envisions a world where LGBTQ people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.   Miriam Gallardo, Oracle Consulting Sales Executive, was a co-chair of this event, which drew an impressive crowd of 1,300 people. Miriam provided an impactful, authentic and heartfelt introduction of Patricia Velasquez, who utilized her fame to lay the foundation of an unprecedented support system that highlights the importance of encouraging others to live authentic lives. Patricia is the first Latina Supermodel in the 90s, an actress in The Mummy / The Mummy Returns and has appeared on many popular TV shows. The night was filled with remarkable speakers & honorees including Elizabeth Warren (U.S. Senator), Maura Healey (MA Attorney-General), Marty Walsh (Mayor of Boston), Sarah McBride (HRC National Press Secretary), Patricia Velasquez (Global Human Rights Advocate, Actress and Model), Teddy Quinlivan (Transgender Advocate, Model), Dana Goldberg (Comedian) and Brian Puccini (Restauranteur & LGBTQ Advocate/Employer). Aaron Millstone, Senior Vice President of Oracle Consulting, not only attended the event, but also ensured that Oracle secured the VIP sponsorship. Aaron states, “Oracle Consulting’s leadership team has set an objective of creating the best place to work across all of Oracle. A key aspect of building a best place culture is creating an inclusive and diverse environment, where people can be their authentic selves and have a full sense of belonging at work. By sponsoring, attending and supporting the HRC gala event in Boston, we were able to show through our actions that this is so much more than a phrase or program that we dutifully point to as a corporation.” Thank you to Kristine Lessard for her leadership engaging the Oracle Pride Employee Network (OPEN), John Marshall, Oracle Consulting Sales Executive, and the Oracle Diversity and Inclusion team for fostering an environment at Oracle that is inclusive of all employees. For more information on Oracle’s Diversity and Inclusion visit: https://www.oracle.com/corporate/careers/diversity/  

Oracle was a VIP sponsor for the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) thirty-seventh annual Gala Dinner in Boston on November 17th. The HRC is the largest national LGBTQ civil rights organization. HRC...

Oracle Corporation

Oracle Cloud Café - Modernización de la Plataforma Analítica el 16 de noviembre en la oficina de Oracle Madrid

¿Ha oído hablar de conceptos como Big Data, Machine Learning, Inteligencia Artificial, Analítica Predictiva o Algoritmos de Decisión en Tiempo Real y le gustaría saber de primera mano en qué consisten y cómo le pueden impactar a sus sistemas basados en tecnología Oracle?  Le invitamos a que conozca cuáles son algunas de las principales tendencias y cuál es la propuesta de Oracle para dar respuestas a estas nuevas necesidades, mientras se toma un café y conversa con los consultores expertos en los factores clave para su implantación exitosa.    Agenda del Evento:   9:45 – 10:00    Inscripción y café de bienvenida  10:00 – 10:30  Modernización de su Plataforma Analítica 10:30 – 11:15  Prepare su viaje al Cloud:     - Beneficios del Cloud y Estrategia de migración     - Reconocimiento de su inversión (Bring Your Own License Program)  11:15 – 12:00  Ecosistema de soluciones analíticas en Cloud:     - Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse     - Oracle  Data Integration Platform     - Oracle  Analytics Cloud  12:00 – 12:15   Coffe Break 12:15 – 13:00   Incorpore nuevas funcionalidades en su plataforma analítica:     - Global Data Warehouse (Relational + Big Data)     - Analítica Predictiva: Machine Learning     - Information Discovery     - Real Time Events and Decisions   Dónde y Cuándo: 16 noviembre 2018   9:45 - 13:00 Oficina de Oracle Madrid, Calle José Echegaray, 6B, 28232 Las Rozas, Madrid, España.   Comparte tu datos de contacto enviando un correo a paolo.gallo@oracle.com o haciendo clic aquí y Oracle Consulting se pondrá en contacto contigo.   Más Información:  Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse  Oracle Data Integration Platform  Oracle Analytics Cloud  Oracle Consulting 

¿Ha oído hablar de conceptos como Big Data, Machine Learning, Inteligencia Artificial, Analítica Predictiva o Algoritmos de Decisión en Tiempo Real y le gustaría saber de primera mano en qué...

Oracle Corporation

How Oracle Consulting Ensures Customers Achieve Lasting Value with Oracle Cloud Applications: 3 Questions with Steve Reeter

The ultimate measure of success for a cloud applications provider lies not in winning a customer’s business. It doesn’t reside in an on-time, on-budget go-live either. While these are critical goals to meet, they represent milestones along the path to the brass ring of achievement: ensuring customers receive enduring value from their applications.   This goal drives both the philosophic and practical approaches Oracle Applications Consulting instills in every customer project. In this interview, Steve Reeter, Oracle’s Vice President of ERP Consulting, discusses how we collaborate with customers to establish a strong foundation of ownership and knowledge of Oracle Cloud Applications that pays long-term dividends. Q: At a recent event, I heard you define a happy customer as one who finds lasting value with Oracle. How does Oracle Applications Consulting help customers achieve that lasting value starting from the implementation experience to beyond the go-live? A: For some time, certainly all the way back to on-premises, we’ve ascribed to a philosophy that it’s not just about a go-live event, it’s a commitment to agility. For cloud, it's all about long-term agility, long-term sustainability, long-term flexibility. Staying current becomes vastly easier in the cloud, which gives customers a roadmap that is an appreciating asset. Our ability to get customers to that place in deployment is key, and the way in which we get the customer onboarded adds signature value both in the implementation and over time because we are arguably the most transparent partner. Oracle Consulting is the most aggressive in making sure that our customers are self-sufficient. We have a multi-decade reputation of getting customers better trained and more knowledgeable. I like to think of our work as ensuring customers become better custodians of their Oracle applications. We not only get customers live, but very quickly on the heels of the go-live, we position them to be great custodians for change. We empower them to continue to optimize and take advantage of business events in the cloud, not just application updates or unlocking software value. It’s about addressing business change, mergers and acquisitions, expansion, globalization, technology innovations—all the things that we want them to be able to capitalize on. Our litmus test within the first year, second year, and third year is to confirm that value is appreciating faster than they’ve experienced before. That embodies lasting value for us, not a “one and done” go-live. Q: You mentioned our reputation for delivering better training and knowledge transfer. What is different about our approach? How does Oracle Applications Consulting deploy the strategy and tactics to enable that custodianship from day one? A: It begins with the transparency and the explicitness of what it’s going to take to be a successful customer. The best enablement for success that a customer can acknowledge is they’re going to have to be a critical participant. They’re going to have to be a decision-maker. They're going to have to commit resources. This is not a back-office project, and it’s critical for customers to align with that mindset to ensure they’re truly prepared. The process that begins from there, the way we deploy cloud, we believe is markedly different. With our implementation methodology, True Cloud Method, we have customers engage with the software extremely early—right up front—instilling the notion that their role as an informed participant is critical to success. Specifically, that starts with things like familiarization workshops as a part of True Cloud Method, which serves as early application education awareness. That lays a foundation so that, once we start making decisions, making setups, and establishing, confirming, and accepting designs, they’re truly an informed participant. We progress from there with customers working side by side with us. We look at the project as a bell curve—it shifts over time to less dependency on Oracle Consulting and more responsibility on the customer. That’s deliberate, so the customer begins to validate the system. By validating it, they’re creating muscle memory as opposed to just intellectual understanding of their processes on the cloud. That’s vital because, again, you can throw a lot of consultants at testing and validation, but that doesn't cement that necessary sense of ownership for the customer. Empowering our customers to own validation carries them forward. It prepares them for their first month-end close, for the first unexpected production support, for the first proactive business event that needs to be conducted in the cloud. The last milestone before go-live is when a big part of the customer’s organization—not just their core team—is validating with hands on a keyboard, and they have been properly prepared to do that. That makes for a successful cut-over, and it makes for a successful cloud custodian relationship with the applications. Q: Your description of the transfer of responsibility over the course of the project brings to mind a common challenge I’ve heard from many customers during my career: “How do I dedicate the internal resources necessary for this implementation without disrupting my day-to-day operations?” What approach does Oracle Consulting take with customers to ensure they can successfully run their business while doing the implementation in parallel? A: The last technology event that many of our customers have seen is an upgrade, which can create a false sense of interaction. So, at times, our customers will say, “Well, this is maybe a little more work than the upgrade,” or “You, the consultants, will do a little more work than the upgrade.” My response is, “No, that’s like the difference between some house maintenance and building a brand-new home.” We prepare customers accordingly in several ways. We make it clear they’ll be making key decisions that impact their business. And as a result, they need to assemble the right team to support it. That requires the executive sponsors of the project to assemble their best people to fingerprint this new cloud design. This sounds obvious, but it can be difficult to assign your most in-demand talent to another project. We go an extra step to understand not only what the demands are for some of these key folks, but to determine what other capital projects are going on in parallel that may be fighting for resources. Sometimes that’s as innocuous as an expected audit. Sometimes it’s as strategic as an acquisition during the life of the project, and those same critical resources will get tapped. Once the team is assembled, executive sponsors must deputize individuals by clearly making the project a priority for them, and empower them to make decisions on behalf of the company. The C-level executives won’t be at every meeting. Responsibility assignments and governance structures only work if there is a true delegation of authority. In absence of that, you get decision volleys, secondary reviews, and decisions that lack staying power. So, we are candid about the level of commitment needed and the importance of mapping the right resources to the project. The power to make things go quickly requires an empowered team. Customers want to know how fast we can run. And the answer is, it’s a three-legged race. The consulting team can only run as fast as we can run together.  

The ultimate measure of success for a cloud applications provider lies not in winning a customer’s business. It doesn’t reside in an on-time, on-budget go-live either. While these are critical...