In the Field

User Groups Prepare for Oracle OpenWorld 2018

Here’s what four user groups expect from and bring to Oracle OpenWorld San Francisco this year.

By Leslie Steere

September/October 2018

From its very beginnings as Relational Software Inc.’s “first international user group meeting” in 1982, attended by a few dozen customers representing fewer than 20 companies, Oracle OpenWorld has grown to become the industry’s most important business and technology conference for Oracle users and partners, serving thousands of educational sessions to tens of thousands of attendees every year. Although Oracle has managed the event since 1996, user group participation remains a critical part of the conference. Oracle Magazine asked leaders of some key user groups what their members most wanted to gain from Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco this year (October 22–25) and what their user groups were bringing to the conference. Here’s a selection from their responses.

Gary Gordhamer, Director of Education
Independent Oracle Users Group

Because Oracle technology is the core of hundreds of thousands of critical business systems, it’s essential to integrate and upgrade in a proven and reliable manner. With that in mind, for Oracle OpenWorld 2018, I believe Independent Oracle Users Group (IOUG) members will be looking at three hot-topic areas: how to adopt new features in Oracle Database 12c Release 2 into production running systems, what to look forward to in Oracle Database 18c and how to start preparing to use those features in their next projects, and where the cloud can continue to enhance existing business systems as well as enable new business outcomes.

One of IOUG’s goals for its membership is to help develop not just technical skills but also presentation and leadership skills. So it’s great to see that more than 20 of our members are scheduled to speak at Oracle OpenWorld 2018. Anuj Mohan will discuss Oracle Database 18c new features and how they build on what Oracle Database 12c Releases 1 and 2 already delivered, Arup Nanda will help prepare DBAs for their future role in cloud-based organizations with a discussion of DBA best practices for the cloud, and Michael Gangler will present real-world experiences in his session on upgrading to Oracle Database 12.2 in the cloud. That is just a taste of the great content we’re bringing to the conference this year.

Christine Hipp, President
Oracle Applications Users Group

The Oracle Applications Users Group (OAUG) originated and grew for many years largely to support customers running Oracle E-Business Suite. In many cases, this contingent of customers is continuing to use Oracle E-Business Suite while actively planning for and beginning to adopt cloud solutions. We also have members with BI/analytics solutions that are in similar positions. As a result, our members are very interested in seeing hybrid cloud sessions at Oracle OpenWorld.

While some OAUG members maintain a portion of their Oracle apps on premises, a lot of them are venturing into cloud solutions. To do their jobs better, members need to know how to balance the foundations they have in place with the effort to embrace promising new solutions. They want to hear from other customers who’ve “been there, done that.” Highlighting “Real Customers, Real Stories” right up front in the Session Catalog makes it clear that Oracle OpenWorld is providing a platform where customers can learn from each other how to plan and streamline implementations.

To do their jobs better, members need to know how to balance the foundations they have in place with the effort to embrace promising new solutions.”–Christine Hipp, President, Oracle Applications Users Group

We’re pleased to be part of “Real Customers, Real Stories,” with our members sharing how they evaluated and planned for adopting cloud solutions and overcame challenges to get there. One of our member-presented sessions, for example, looks at a migration from Oracle E-Business Suite on premises to the cloud. Another session presents how an OAUG member organization fully adopted out-of-the-box best practices with Oracle Enterprise Planning and Budgeting Cloud Service. You can view the full list of OAUG’s member-presented sessions on the OAUG website.

Ann Hansen, President
Carrie Hollack, Board of Directors
Oracle HCM Users Group

Members of Oracle HCM Users Group (OHUG) are primarily interested in all human capital management (HCM) and analytics products. We also want to understand the integration points between HCM and enterprise resource planning (ERP) products. Lastly, members using Oracle’s PeopleSoft and Oracle E-Business Suite on premises are interested in cloud options for hosting.

Oracle’s focus at this year’s Oracle OpenWorld on the changing workforce is also particularly relevant to OHUG members, who view their HR systems as business enablers. Our members rely on Oracle’s HR applications to meet rapidly changing business needs, including a more collaborative and dynamic environment.

The customer success stories at the conference are also a big draw. Many of our members are focused on differentiating capabilities such as attracting, retaining, engaging, and growing talent, whereas others are constantly adapting to international compliance requirements. And all OHUG members are keenly interested in the new functionality that Oracle continues to roll out in its HCM cloud products as well as its on-premises HR applications.

Of course, OHUG member organizations will be at Oracle OpenWorld to share their own cloud experiences as well. Whether you’re interested in an executive overview of Oracle Human Capital Management Cloud (Oracle HCM Cloud) transformation, a tactical approach to configuring Oracle HCM Cloud security, a how-to on quickly standing up real-time talent insight, or tips on reducing customizations within Oracle’s PeopleSoft applications, you’ll find OHUG members there to share advice and best practices.

Jon Vaughn, CEO
Quest Oracle Community

Overwhelmingly, Quest members are interested in hearing real stories from customers about product implementation and use. They want to hear about what went well as well as what pain points customers are experiencing with their products.

Quest members who are using Oracle Cloud products are looking for best practices and postimplementation resources from those who are on Oracle Cloud. Members evaluating Oracle Cloud want to hear from current Oracle Cloud users about what life looks like once Oracle Cloud is implemented and what benefits can be quickly realized.

Quest will be presenting multiple stories from Oracle customers about their journey to Oracle Cloud, with special focus on Oracle HCM Cloud, Oracle EPM Cloud, and Oracle ERP Cloud”–Jon Vaughn, CEO, Quest Oracle Community

At this year’s conference, Quest will be presenting multiple stories from Oracle customers about their journey to Oracle Cloud, with special focus on Oracle HCM Cloud, Oracle Enterprise Performance Management Cloud (Oracle EPM Cloud), and Oracle Enterprise Management Cloud (Oracle ERP Cloud). Companies including Sinclair Broadcast Group, Yum! Brands, Ohio National Insurance Company, Harbison Walker International, Wagstaff, and Intermountain Health Systems bring with them a great depth of experience that comes from their Oracle Cloud journeys, and we think other customers will benefit greatly from that experience, helping them benchmark their own companies’ progress in their adoption of Oracle Cloud.

We are also presenting sessions focused on the various options Oracle customers have in their utilization of Oracle Cloud, whether that be with IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS, and we will be sharing findings from our annual community surveys for Oracle Cloud and Oracle’s JD Edwards and PeopleSoft products as well.

Of course, Oracle OpenWorld wouldn’t be Oracle OpenWorld without some great parties, and we are hosting several receptions where customers can connect with us and with one another.

Next Steps

REGISTER for Oracle OpenWorld.

REGISTER for Oracle Code One.

Photography by Tue Nam Ton