By Arun Khehar, SVP Applications ECEMEA, Oracle
The physical and digital worlds will converge, co-mingle, and spring into action as businesses and government agencies demonstrate the latest in transformative technologies at GITEX, October 14–18, at the Dubai World Trade Center—the biggest technology exhibition in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).
As MENA governments and businesses take a bigger leadership position on transformative technologies, GITEX is attracting a larger global audience. Last year, more than 470,000 professionals attended, and each year attracts more attendees from outside the region.
This year we expect to see a maturation of the physical-to-digital transformation taking place in the public and private sectors, with a big step toward tangible applications of blockchain, intelligent automation, digital simulation, predictive analytics, and other game-changing technologies. Specific GITEX sessions are planned around the themes of augmented/virtual reality, smart cities, Industry 4.0, and the Internet of Things (IoT).
The cloud also will be a frequent topic of discussion, and our message for finance professionals will be simple: To use these advanced technologies, you need cloud systems as your digital core, a foundation on top of which you can build and expand. Without cloud-based ERP and EPM, it’s extremely challenging to leverage these new technologies.
This, too, is a maturation. While on-premises ERP and other business applications might still technically “work” at the enterprise level, companies clinging to them are missing out on more valuable benefits—including higher ROI, lower costs, and the competitive advantages of always-up-to-date finance technology.
Moving to a complete cloud is essential to true digital transformation; every part of the business needs access to digital tools and capabilities for true transformation to happen. In recognition of this, Oracle offers cloud applications for every department/function—all connected to each other—so everyone in an organization is working from the same set of up-to-date information, as well as the most recent best practices.
Finance functions, in particular, benefit from this integration because it improves accuracy in reporting. Something as simple as certifying the number of laptop computers an organization owns can be impossible if each department documents their assets separately in spreadsheets, but cloud-based procurement systems make it possible.
It’s also a lot easier to add advanced technologies to finance, supply chain, HR, and other line-of-business applications with a complete cloud. DevOps teams, for example, could develop blockchain-based applications faster using Oracle platform services that are already integrated with Oracle applications.
Oracle will have a large presence at GITEX and will be demonstrating a variety of products and services. We’ll talk about how disruptive technologies are touching everyone, from business owners to executives to private citizens. We’ll also talk about our new Oracle Soar automated services, which make it easy to move from on-premises ERP to Oracle ERP Cloud.
GITEX has been happening for more than 30 years and continues to offer a view into how technology is changing the world. This year there will be a lot of exciting demonstrations, and behind them all will be a necessary but silent enabler—cloud. Our goal will be to show how a complete cloud can bring futuristic technologies into organizations today, so companies reap the benefits faster and with less frustration.