How did you get started in IT? By sheer coincidence. I was trained as a teacher, but I decided I wasn’t really suited to that profession, so I took a job as a steel worker as a favor to a friend who owned a steel company. I continued looking for something long term and got a job interview at a division of the Dutch social security agency. They tested me for my fitness as a programmer, and I got assigned to a three-month COBOL training—which I completed in three weeks.
Company: Ciber, an Oracle Platinum Partner and global IT services company
Job title/description: Principal consultant, responsible for DBA work and handling remote support
Location: Nieuwegein, the Netherlands
Oracle credentials: Oracle Certified Professional (multiple versions of Oracle Database), Oracle Certified Master (Oracle Database 10g), Oracle Database 11g Certified Implementation Specialist, and Oracle Linux Certified Implementation Specialist, with 26 years of experience using Oracle products
Which feature in Oracle Database are you currently finding most valuable? SQL Plan Management. Once that feature came along, applications began running a lot smoother than before and really stabilized, giving a much better user experience. Performance metrics are nice, but a good user experience is what really counts.
What’s the next big thing driving change in your industry? Security and analytics. We can no longer view security as an add-on—rather it’s a basic thing to build a system around. Analytics are tied to security: A simple brute-force attack from a single IP is quite easy to find, but what about one where hundreds of IPs are involved, spread slowly over several weeks? Analytics could help discover them and raise alerts. For this to succeed you need smart people who think outside of the box, combined with smart software that’s flexible enough to support them. I have enormous admiration for the analytical functions in Oracle Database.
How are you using cloud computing in your work these days? My work life revolves around being constantly connected to a pod that stores my applications and information. Cloud is a way of doing things that’s cost-efficient and streamlines processes, and I’m glad to be part of the Oracle EPM [enterprise performance management] cloud movement.
Company: interRel, an Oracle Platinum Partner that focuses exclusively on Oracle Business Analytics
Job title/description: EPM cloud specialist, responsible for staying abreast of Oracle EPM product offerings and ensuring that consultants are knowledgeable about these technologies
Location: Dallas, Texas
Oracle credentials: Several certifications including Oracle Certified Expert (Hyperion System 9 Planning 4.1 Implementation Consultant), with more than 15 years of experience using Oracle products
Oracle ACE Associate
How do you use social media in your work? Social media gives me a voice to evangelize what I believe in, and I love that it’s an investment and takes time to build up gradually. I also love that people can opt in to only what they want to be a part of. I use social media every single day. I love crowdsourcing knowledge, consuming information, and sharing what I’ve learned through this fun and unique channel.
Which new features in Oracle applications are you currently finding most valuable? Earlier this year Oracle Planning and Budgeting Cloud Service integrated the long-awaited Oracle Hyperion Financial Reporting Web Studio. The movement of the studio client from desktop to web has been discussed for years, and it’s a step in the right direction for Oracle’s cloud software to become zero-footprint. I’m glad to get my hands on it and see how it compares. These are exciting times for financial reports developers!
What technology has most changed your life? I started my Oracle journey with Oracle ADF [Oracle Application Development Framework]. I used to be an IBM/Lotus Notes developer until one day an Oracle presales guy—who is now a very close friend of mine—approached me and threw the first Oracle ADF training materials on my desk. That moment changed my entire professional career, when that friend ignited the Oracle spark in me. I then transitioned to working with SOA [service-oriented architecture], BPM [business process management], Oracle Portal, and Oracle WebCenter.
Company: eProseed, an Oracle Platinum Partner with in-depth expertise in Oracle Database, Oracle Fusion Middleware, and Oracle engineered systems
Job title/description: Technical director, head of Centre of Excellence, and member of the global office of the chief technology officer, responsible for troubleshooting business-critical problems and giving technical training to junior engineers
Location: Luxembourg, Luxembourg
Oracle credentials: More than 25 certifications including Oracle Application Grid 11g Certified Implementation Specialist, Oracle SOA Suite 11g Implementation Specialist, and Oracle Application Development Framework 11g Certified Implementation Specialist, with 11 years of experience using Oracle products
Oracle ACE Director
What would you like to see Oracle, as a company, do more of? The Oracle ADF/Oracle Mobile Application Framework team has released lots of videos describing and explaining concepts and how-tos. I find this really helpful, and I’d love to see other teams, mainly those working on SOA and BPM, apply the same approach.
What green practices do you use in your work? We try to reduce printing to a minimum and have gone all-digital with our internal documents. eProseed’s headquarters are also located at SolarWind, a building that’s become the optimal example of sustainable building in Luxembourg. SolarWind has earned multiple environmental certifications, and it meets the highest standards in sustainable development and eco-citizenship. It makes use of five different renewable energy sources: biomass, solar, wind, geothermal, and water.