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Advice and Information for Finance Professionals

Oracle OpenWorld Looks to the Business of Tomorrow

Lynne Sampson
Managing Editor

Does this scenario sound familiar to you?

Your company has a new product ready to launch. The product development team is eager to get it out to the market. Finance has run the forecasts, and the new product is going to be big: it has the potential to increase revenue by 19 percent in the first year, and 31 percent next year.

But your company has supply chain issues at the Mexican plant that are causing delivery delays; and attrition on the design team is more than 40 percent; and the materials budget is off by 17 percent; and sales generates 75 percent of its revenue from older products.

Your customers might be ready for your latest innovation, but your business isn’t.

This is a perfect example of a business that can’t keep up with the pace of change. According to Steve Cox, Global VP of ERP EPM Product Marketing at Oracle, companies are constrained by yesterday’s technologies and operating models: aging IT infrastructure, manual processes, people and cultures that are resistant to change.

In his Oracle OpenWorld session, “The Last Upgrade You’ll Ever Need,” Cox urged companies to immediately start looking at tomorrow’s technologies—cloud applications built on machine learning, chatbots, intelligent process automation and more—to immediately start automating as many functions and processes as possible.

“Everything that technology can do, it will do,” Cox said, describing the current era as “the last mile of automation.”

In the finance function, for example, half of a team’s time is spent on manual, mundane tasks: transaction processing, reconciling numbers, chasing and waiting for information. Yesterday’s ERP doesn’t provide the level of insight, speed or automation required to keep up with today’s pace of change.

Companies need tomorrow’s ERP: built on emerging technologies to include features like expense reporting assistants, supplier recommendations, intelligent payments, and more. And because it’s in the cloud, tomorrow’s ERP is updated every 90 days with the latest functionality.

“This is about making your organization future-ready,” said Cox. “You can consume innovation at a pace that was unheard of in the old, on-premises world.”

A Connected, Intelligent Business

Senior Vice President of ERP Product Marketing, Juergen Lindner, echoed the sentiment in the OpenWorld session, “Create Tomorrow, Today: Transform into a Connected and Intelligent Business.”

“What makes the conversation about cloud meaningful is the access to innovation,” Lindner said during a panel discussion with Oracle customers and IDC. “When you compare the richness of functionality of cloud applications to on premises, it’s the secret sauce to future-proofing your business.”

Lindner cautioned audience members about the “cloud hairball”: multiple point solutions from multiple cloud providers that aren’t integrated with each other. This not only hinders the flow of information from one system to the next, it prevents the process automation that companies are seeking to achieve.

The Dangers of Disconnected Clouds

IDC’s recent InfoBrief, “Technology Challenges Driving Large Enterprises to a Connected Cloud Suite” (sponsored by Oracle) found that only 5% of large enterprises have all their SaaS applications fully integrated with corporate-wide systems.

In cases where applications are integrated, only 25% of respondents said the SaaS provider offers this integration. Instead, organizations rely on on-premises integration platforms (21%), cloud-based integration platforms (20%), custom in-house integration (16%), and systems integrators (14%) to build the integrations they need.

“Many large enterprises have made repeated, disconnected cloud purchases that have left them with a complex portfolio of inconsistent and potentially incompatible solutions that are expensive, cumbersome and not easily leveraged as a whole for strategic advantage,” IDC writes.

The firm advises organizations to reassess cloud vendors based on a proven ability to deliver full SaaS integration, as well as their ability to provide a head start with innovation and digital transformation.

IDC's advice aligns with Oracle's approach. We offer a complete, connected suite of cloud applications, infused with machine learning, chatbots and other emerging technologies, to provide immediate innovations that you can begin using right away.

“This is something that Oracle is in a unique position to provide,” said Lindner. 

Learn more about Oracle ERP Cloud and Oracle EPM Cloud.

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