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Oracle Unified Method (OUM) 6.4

ORACLE® UNIFIED METHOD RELEASE 6.4 Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions About Oracle is evolving the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) to achieve the vision of supporting the entire Enterprise IT Lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. OUM provides an implementation approach that is rapid, broadly adaptive, and business-focused. OUM includes a comprehensive project and program management framework...

Monday, October 31, 2016 | Release 6.4 | Read More

OUM Key Work Products

Wondering about which tasks and work products are essential for your project? A good resource provided by OUM is a list of key work products for each phase of Implement to assist you in planning, estimating and delivering projects. A key work product is a work product that represents the culmination or end result of work effort that contributes to the achievement of milestone objectives for a phase. Key work products may be considered as candidate deliverables. Not every key...

Thursday, February 4, 2016 | Release 6.3 | Read More

Access to the Oracle Unified Method (OUM) for Oracle Customers and Partners

This blog entry contains the process and navigation steps for Oracle customers and partners who wish to access OUM, including the Cloud Application Services Approach. Oracle Customers The OUM Customer Program allows customers to obtain copies of the method for their internal use – including guidelines, templates, and tailored work breakdown structure in one of two ways: OUM Customer Program – No-Cost Option: Customers, who have a signed contract with Oracle for a consulting...

Monday, October 26, 2015 | Release 6.3 | Read More

MoSCoW Grooming

I was recently asked whether the MoSCoW List (list of known business requirements classified by the first letter of: Must, Should, Could or Won’t) is a static document. The short answer to this is No – the MoSCoW List is intended to be evolved, some use the term “groomed”, as the project progresses. MoSCoW grooming is a good process to indicate what is inside or outside scope for the project as a whole, as well as for a given phase and/or iteration. The MoSCoW List is...

Friday, September 25, 2015 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Can OUM Support Agile Development?

We are asked from time-to-time whether OUM is considered to be "agile".  There is not really a short answer to this question so this blog entry addresses the key characteristics of OUM that make it an agile method. First of all, OUM is not "waterfall", but instead promotes an iterative and incremental approach to development and deployment of information systems. Any of the tasks within OUM may be iterated. Tasks may be iterated to increase quality of the work products to a...

Friday, August 14, 2015 | Release 6.3 | Read More

OUM Spotlight - Keeping Stakeholders Engaged

Congratulations! Your new project is off to a great start and all of the stakeholders came away from the project kickoff meeting informed and enthused. Now you may be wondering how do I keep these very busy stakeholders informed and enthused as the project moves along?  One technique used by successful OUM projects is to communicate the project's status to all of the stakeholders upon the completion of the phase end milestones, and take this milestone opportunity to inform...

Tuesday, March 31, 2015 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) 6.3

ORACLE® UNIFIED METHOD RELEASE 6.3 Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions About Oracle is evolving the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) to achieve the vision of supporting the entire Enterprise IT Lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. OUM replaces Legacy Methods, such as AIM Advantage, AIM for Business Flows, EMM Advantage, PeopleSoft's Compass, and Siebel's Results Roadmap. OUM provides an...

Friday, January 16, 2015 | Release 6.3 | Read More

Join the OUM User Community on LinkedIn and Twitter

As a member of the Oracle Unified Method (OUM) User Community you are able to share your knowledge and insight and benefit from the advice and experience of the global OUM user community. You can quickly locate information; find other knowledgeable users; and provide answers, feedback, and experiences. The OUM Group on LinkedIn and OUM on Twitter help to facilitate communications among members of the OUM Professional Community. If you haven't already, we encourage you to join now...

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 | General | Read More

Questions to Ask When Organizing Your OUM Workplan

So you’ve read all the tips and blogs about how to tailor OUM for your project and you’ve figured out what tasks you need. Now you have to put them into a workplan. What do you do? Do you use the traditional activity wbs structure highlighted in the method or do you need something else? The possibilities are endless. Think about how you implement your projects now. Think about what works now and what doesn’t. Consider this blog my Questions to Ask When Organizing Your OUM...

Friday, October 10, 2014 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Checklists Are Leading Edge

I recently ran across this blog on The Power of Checklists by Ivar Jacobson. In it he describes the value of using checklists on software projects since they: “keep software projects on track, and help maximize the delivery of value, and minimize the risk of project failure.” OUM practitioners know this since the method contains checklists in many places - templates, phase overviews, activities, tasks, etc.  In fact, the WBS itself could be considered a checklist since the...

Tuesday, September 23, 2014 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Oracle OpenWorld and OUM

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) Enthusiasts: I am excited to announce that I will be attending Oracle OpenWorld (OOW) from September 29th to October 2nd representing Oracle's Global Method Group and the Oracle Unified Method (OUM).  If you are planning to attend, and are interested in discussing OUM, then send me a message on LinkedIn and we can arrange a convenient time to meet face-to-face. I would love to discuss your experience using OUM and/or answer OUM-related questions.   Hop...

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 | General | Read More

Guard Against the Multitasking Brain Drain with OUM

Most people are aware of the perils of multitasking – it is bad for productivity, increases the possibility of distractions, and basically creates a mental traffic jam. It not only wreaks havoc in everyday life but also causes major problems on projects. If you look at OUM you might be thinking, “Hey wait! Isn’t the fact that OUM’s processes run in parallel and that it takes a cross-functional approach really multitasking?” My response to you (to borrow from Lee Corso) is,...

Wednesday, August 6, 2014 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM Training Program: Project Workplan Overview

Course Description | Access | Training Program  Course Description The Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) Project Workplan Overview training consists of a collection of short, independent modules that provide information about and a demonstration of key features of the OUM Project Workplan.The OUM Project Workplan, available in Microsoft Project format, includes tasks from OUM's Manage and Implement Focus Areas and can be: executed at the activity-level or task-level, tailored...

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 | Training | Read More

Eleven Questions to Ask When Tailoring OUM for Your Project

I’ve posted several blogs in the past on tailoring OUM. Here’s one more. As you can see from the title, I call this one Eleven Questions to Ask When Tailoring OUM for Your Project.  Start with the Core Workflow and adjust it based on the following questions. Do you need additional Business Requirements (RD) and Requirements Analysis (RA) tasks?  If so, add them. Are you implementing a custom-off-the-shelf (COTS) product?  If yes, review the Mapping and Configuration (MC) process...

Monday, July 14, 2014 | Read More

OUM Success Story: Multi-Product Implementation for a Leading Travel and Transportation Client

More success! Or in honor of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil we should say: "¡GOL!"  As follow-on to my previous blog entry on the OUM Success Quote, here we have an example of how OUM was used successfully on a highly complex, multi-product project. Project Profile:  A leading Travel and Transportation Company increased customer satisfaction and streamlined accounting functions through an implementation of Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle Business Intelligence Applications, and...

Monday, June 16, 2014 | General | Read More

Success Quote: A Hybrid Approach for Success

We recently received this quote from a project that successfully used OUM: “On our project, we applied a combination of the Oracle Unified Method (OUM) and the client's methodology. The project was organized by OUM's phases and a subset of OUM's processes, tasks, and templates. Using a hybrid of the two methods resulted in an implementation approach that was optimized for the client-specific requirements for this project." This hybrid approach is an excellent example of using...

Wednesday, May 28, 2014 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) Partner Program

Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN) Diamond, Platinum, and Gold Partners The Oracle Unified Method (OUM) is available to Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN) Diamond, Platinum, and Gold Partners as a benefit of membership.  Partners at these three levels are able to download OUM from the Oracle Unified Method Knowledge Zone on the Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN) Portal at no additional cost. Authorized use of OUM materials by Oracle PartnerNetwork Diamond, Platinum, and Gold Partners is described...

Monday, May 19, 2014 | General | Read More

Where’s My View?

With release 6.1 and continued with 6.2, the Home page access pull down was renamed from Select a View to Access Method By and the options were changed.  The view access is still available, but now you also can access applicable OUM content by role (Project Manager or Team Member) or by Supplemental Guidance (Solution Delivery Guide or Supplemental Guide) or by Method Repository.  So let’s talk about each of these options as well as review the View option. By Role Access is...

Monday, April 28, 2014 | Release 6.2 | Read More

OUM Support for Cloud Implementations

You’ve heard that the Oracle® Unified Method supports the entire Enterprise IT lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product, but you may be wondering if that includes support for implementing Oracle Cloud Application Services. The answer is an unequivocal “Yes”. Since OUM 6.0, the method pack has included the OUM Cloud Application Services Implementation Approach Solution Delivery Guide What is the OUM Cloud Application...

Monday, April 14, 2014 | Read More

New in OUM - The Abbreviated PMP Template

Did you know that OUM now contains an Abbreviated Project Management Plan (PMP) template in the BT.070 – Create Project Management Framework task?  If you have been around OUM for a while, or have been a project manager using another methodology that aligns to PMI's global standards, you know that the PMP is key to promoting project success. The PMP is the work product that captures the project approaches for all of the OUM Manage processes. The Abbreviated PMP template in...

Monday, March 24, 2014 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) 6.2

ORACLE® UNIFIED METHOD RELEASE 6.2 Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions About Oracle is evolving the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) to achieve the vision of supporting the entire Enterprise IT Lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. OUM replaces Legacy Methods, such as AIM Advantage, AIM for Business Flows, EMM Advantage, PeopleSoft's Compass, and Siebel's Results Roadmap. OUM provides an...

Wednesday, March 19, 2014 | Release 6.2 | Read More

Scrum Teams -- Do you feel the rhythm?

Hi, I’m Terri Merenkov a member of the Global Methods team at Oracle. This month I celebrate my 18thyear with Oracle. You might be surprised by that, but many in the Global Methods team have more tenure than I do. This is part of what makes my job so interesting. If I don’t know the answer to something about Oracle Implementation projects of a certain type, I don’t have to go far to find someone who does. Even though some concepts have been around for a while, there is always...

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 | General | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) Customer Program

PURCHASE OPTION NOW AVAILABLE! Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions The Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) Customer Program has been expanded to include a purchase option. The Program allows customers to obtain copies of the method for their internal use – including guidelines, templates, and tailored work breakdown structure – in one of two ways: 1.) OUM Customer Program – No-Cost Option: Customers, who have a signed contract with Oracle for a...

Friday, November 22, 2013 | General | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) 6.1

ORACLE® UNIFIED METHOD RELEASE 6.1 Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions About Oracle is evolving the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) to achieve the vision of supporting the entire Enterprise IT Lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. OUM replaces Legacy Methods, such as AIM Advantage, AIM for Business Flows, EMM Advantage, PeopleSoft's Compass, and Siebel's Results Roadmap. OUM provides an...

Thursday, November 7, 2013 | Release 6.1 | Read More

New in OUM 6.0: Scrum View and Project Plan

Have you checked out the newly released OUM 6.0?  Amongst the many items on the "What's New" list you will notice that there is a new Scrum view and project plan, which are the direct result of collaboration by many global subject matter experts.  The Scrum view and associated project plan provide a conceptual look at managing a Scrum-based project using OUM as the method and source of work products. The Scrum view brings together into one place all the OUM tasks associated...

Thursday, July 25, 2013 | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) 6.0

ORACLE® UNIFIED METHOD RELEASE 6.0 Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions About Oracle is evolving the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) to achieve the vision of supporting the entire Enterprise IT Lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. OUM replaces Legacy Methods, such as AIM Advantage, AIM for Business Flows, EMM Advantage, PeopleSoft's Compass, and Siebel's Results Roadmap. OUM provides an...

Thursday, July 18, 2013 | Read More

The Eating Contest - How a software project is like an eating contest

It may be hard to imagine, but there are some similarities between software projects and eating contests. No, I'm not implying that both are messy  and leave you feeling ill. Done properly, only an eating contest will produce those results. What I am talking about is that both eating contests and software projects should employ an iterative and incremental approach. In other words, smaller chunks are better whether you're eating or implementing. Click here to hear about a guy...

Monday, May 6, 2013 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Tailoring the OUM Workplan

Did you know that OUM has guidance for tailoring your project? Located in the Supplemental Guidance section of the Key Components on the Manage view is the Tailoring OUM for Your Project guidance.  This guidance describes a step-by-step process for tailoring OUM for your project.  This process starts with the Estimate and/or Proposal and ends with Assigning Resources and Duration to Activities and Tasks. What this blog focuses on is the tailoring of the actual OUM Project...

Monday, April 22, 2013 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model - Part 5

Welcome to Part V of the Five Part Blog Series -- “Steps to Creating an OUM Estimating Model”.  Developing the estimating model is only part of the process.  Equally important is the testing and refinement of the estimating model. Test and Refine the Estimating Model Once the implementation approach is identified, the conditions for whether the individual estimating components are included, and the factors that influence the effort for the estimating components have been...

Friday, March 22, 2013 | Estimating | Read More

Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model - Part 4

Welcome to Part IV of the Five Part Blog Series -- “Steps to Creating an OUM Estimating Model”.  In today’s blog, I will share with you, from my experience, the key steps in creating a reasonable, repeatable estimating model. Steps for Developing an OUM Estimating Model A.   Assemble the Estimating Model Development Team As discussed, the goal of an estimating model is to estimate a scope of work yielding consistent effort for consistent scope regardless of the experience of...

Thursday, March 21, 2013 | Estimating | Read More

Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model - Part 3

Welcome to Part III of the Five Part Blog Series -- “Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model”.  Today we will explore the different types of estimating models commonly used in the industry. Types of Estimating Models                 Bottom Up Estimating – A bottom up estimate decomposes the project down to very small components of work, for example, an Activity or a Task.   It estimates each component to arrive at the estimate for the whole.  This estimating approach is the most...

Wednesday, March 20, 2013 | Estimating | Read More

Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model - Part 2

Welcome to Part II of the Five Part Blog Series -- “Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model”.  Creating an Estimate vs. Creating an Estimating Model First, let’s establish the difference between an estimate and an estimating model.   A one-time estimate based on one’s unique experience is NOT an estimating model.  Rather, this is an experienced based estimate.    Often this “experienced based estimate” resembles a Work-breakdown Structure (WBS) with number of hours or days filled...

Tuesday, March 19, 2013 | Estimating | Read More

Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model

Welcome to my 5-part series – “Steps to Create an OUM Estimating Model” Introduction I am a methodologist.  Together with my Oracle Method colleagues, numerous hours have been spent defining method structure and developing collateral to support Oracle Services delivery.   We also facilitate the development of estimating models for a variety of technologies and applications. Estimating models come in many shapes and sizes.   I have been exposed to different estimating tools and...

Monday, March 18, 2013 | Estimating | Read More

OUM’s Oracle Support Services Supplemental Guide – What’s in it for you?

As highlighted in this previous post, the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) includes supplemental guides to provide product, technology, and business area specific guidance, which complement and expand on the general guidance found in OUM’s baseline method materials. There are a number of Supplemental Guides currently available in OUM covering a variety of areas from Commercial Off-the-Shelf (COTS) Application Implementations to WebCenter.  Because they provide targeted guidance,...

Monday, March 11, 2013 | Navigating OUM | Read More

A Method Store – Supplemental Guidance (Understanding the Structure of OUM)

My last blog in this series on understanding the structure of OUM discusses supplemental guidance.  This is the final section of the OUM Repository “store” that you need to consider.Going back to our grocery store comparison, the grocery store contains additional specialty items.  These items complement the groceries.  You don’t always need these items, but sometimes they come in handy.  These items might include sections for gourmet or hard to find groceries, a book section...

Wednesday, January 30, 2013 | Navigating OUM | Read More

A Method Store – Views (Understanding the Structure of OUM)

This is the fourth blog in a series of blogs on the structure of OUM.  In the previous blogs, I compared the OUM repository to a grocery store or a store with method materials with three main departments (focus areas); Manage, Envision and Implement and each of these having sections for phases, processes, activities and tasks. So now you have your project and you know you don’t need to use everything in OUM but with all this material, where do you start?Start with a view, or...

Monday, January 28, 2013 | Navigating OUM | Read More

A Method Store – Base Materials (Understanding the Structure of OUM)

Once again, building on my previous blogs where I compared the OUM repository to a grocery store or basically a store with method materials with three main sections (focus areas); Manage, Envision and Implement. Each focus area is organized similarly.  Within each focus area of the OUM repository, there are sections (or departments) for phases, processes, activities and tasks.Phase guidance is found in the Phase Overviews.  Phases are a chronological grouping of tasks.  In...

Thursday, January 24, 2013 | Navigating OUM | Read More

A Method Store - Focus Areas (Understanding the Structure of OUM)

If you remember my previous blog entry, I compared the OUM repository to a grocery store, that is, a store with method materials.  Just as the grocery store is organized into sections or departments, the OUM repository is segmented into three main sections or focus areas; Manage, Envision and Implement.  Each of these focus areas has its own view.  From the OUM Home page, use the Select a View menu to go to the Full Method and Focus Areas page.  From there choose the focus...

Friday, January 18, 2013 | Navigating OUM | Read More

A Method Store (Understanding the Structure of OUM) - Introduction

This blog entry is the first in a series of blog entries to assist you in understanding the structure of the Oracle Unified Method. The Oracle Unified Method (OUM) is a repository of information that can be used to support the entire enterprise IT lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product.Think of OUM as a grocery store filled with inventory (method materials) that can be used to implement your project.  When you shop, you never...

Wednesday, January 16, 2013 | Navigating OUM | Read More

OUM Manage - The Key to Marital Bliss

During a recent blog on “Applying the Iterative and Incremental Principle”, a follower commented that the waterfall approach was responsible for the demise of his marriage.  He mused that his marriage may have had a chance if he had followed an iterative and incremental approach! Although this exchange was meant to be amusing, it prompted me to think about the similarity between a conventional marriage and the “marriage” that occurs when an OUM project is initiated.   Without...

Thursday, January 10, 2013 | Planning and Managing | Read More

What's New in OUM 5.6: Updated Manage Homepage

Have you seen the updated Manage Focus Area homepage in the latest release of OUM?  If you have downloaded the recently released OUM 5.6, you may have noticed the Manage homepage was redesigned so that the primary navigation is now by activity, rather than by process as in prior releases. This was done based on feedback from our global PM community that they prefer to view and manage their projects at the activity level. The new activity diagram navigation allows a PM to see...

Tuesday, January 8, 2013 | Release 5.6 | Read More

Oracle Unified Method (OUM) Release 5.6

ORACLE® UNIFIED METHOD RELEASE 5.6 Oracle’s Full Lifecycle Method for Deploying Oracle-Based Business Solutions About Oracle is evolving the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) to achieve the vision of supporting the entire Enterprise IT Lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. OUM replaces Legacy Methods, such as AIM Advantage, AIM for Business Flows, EMM Advantage, PeopleSoft's Compass, and Siebel's Results Roadmap. OUM provides an...

Monday, December 17, 2012 | Release 5.6 | Read More

Do You Know How OUM defines the four, basic types of business system testing performed on a project? Why not test your knowledge?

Testing is perhaps the most important process in the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM). That makes it all the more important for practitioners to have a common understanding of the various types of functional testing referenced in the method, and to use the proper terminology when communicating with each other about testing activities. OUM identifies four basic types of functional testing, which is sometimes referred to as business system testing.  The basic functional testing...

Thursday, December 13, 2012 | Testing | Read More

Finding "Stuff" In OUM

  One of the first questions people asked when they start using the Oracle Unified Method (OUM) is “how do I find X ?” Well of course no one is really looking for “X”!! but typically an OUM user might know the Task ID, or part of the Task Name, or maybe they just want to find out if there is any content within OUM that is related to a couple of keys words they have in their mind. Here are three quick tips I give people: 1. Open up one of the OUM Views, then click “Expand All”,...

Wednesday, December 5, 2012 | Navigating OUM | Read More

The Workshop Technique Handbook

The #OUM method pack contains a plethora of information, but if you browse through the activities and tasks contained in OUM, you will see very few references to workshops.  Consequently, I am often asked whether OUM supports a workshop-type approach.  In general, OUM does not prescribe the manner in which tasks should be conducted, as many factors such as culture, availability of resources, potential travel cost of attendees, can influence whether a workshop is appropriate in...

Tuesday, December 4, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Finding Tools Guidance in OUM

OUM is not tool – specific. However, it does include tool guidance.  Tool guidance in OUM includes: a mention of a tool that could be used to complete a specific task(s) templates created with a specific tool example work products in a specific tool links to tool resources Tool Supplemental Guides So how do you find all this helpful tool information? Start at the lowest level first – the Task Overview.  Even though the task overviews are written tool-agnostic, they sometimes mention...

Monday, December 3, 2012 | Navigating OUM | Read More

When should I use a Process Model versus a Use Case?

This Blog entry is a follow on to https://blogs.oracle.com/oum/entry/oum_is_business_process_and and addresses a question I sometimes get asked…..i.e. “when I am gathering requirements on a Project, should I use a Process Modeling approach, or should I use a Use Case approach?” Not surprisingly, the short answer is “it depends”! Let’s take a scenario where you are working on a Sales Force Automation project. We’ll call the process that is being implemented “Lead-to-Order”. I...

Tuesday, November 20, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

The Birth of a Method - Where did OUM come from?

It seemed fitting to start this blog entry with the OUM vision statement. The vision for the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) is to support the entire Enterprise IT lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product.  Well, it’s that time of year again; we just finished testing and packaging OUM 5.6.  It will be released for general availability to qualifying customers and partners this month.  Because of this, I’ve been reflecting back on how...

Saturday, November 3, 2012 | General | Read More

Iterative Project Planning - Let's Talk

I recently had an interesting conversation with a Project Manager regarding the shift from a "Waterfall" approach, to an Iterative approach to managing projects. Click on the following link to see an animated version of that conversation! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMOCO_wS96k

Thursday, October 11, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Where's my MD.070?

In a previous Blog entry titled “Where’s My MD.050” I discussed how the OUM Analysis Specification is the “new-and-improved” version of the more traditional Functional Design Document (or MD.050 for Oracle AIM stalwarts). In a similar way, the OUM Design Specification is an evolution of what we used to call the Technical Design Document (or MD.070). Let’s dig a little deeper…… In a traditional software development process, the “Design Task” would include all the time and...

Wednesday, October 3, 2012 | Transitioning from AIM and AIM for Business Flows | Read More

Iterative and Incremental Principle Series 5: Conclusion

Thank you for joining me in the final segment in the Iterative and Incremental series.  During yesterday’s segment, I discussed Iteration Planning, and specifically how I planned my daily exercise (iteration) each morning by assessing multiple factors, while following my overall Implementation plan. As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog, regardless of the type of exercise or how many increment sets I decide to complete each day, I apply the 6 minute interval sets and a timeboxappr...

Friday, September 28, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Iterative and Incremental Principle Series 4: Iteration Planning – (a.k.a What should I do today?)

Welcome back to the fourth of a five part series on applying the Iteration and Incremental principle.  During the last segment, we discussed how the Implementation Plan includes the number of the iterations for a project, but not the specifics about what will occur during each iteration.  Today, we will explore Iteration Planning and discuss how and when to plan your iterations. As mentioned yesterday, OUM prescribes initially planning your project approach at a high level by...

Thursday, September 27, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Iterative and Incremental Principle Series 3: The Implementation Plan (a.k.a The Fitness Plan)

Welcome back to the Iterative and Incremental Blog series.  Yesterday, I demonstrated how shorter interval sets allowed me to focus on my fitness goals and achieve success.  Likewise, in a project setting, shorter milestones allow the project team to maintain focus and experience a sense of accomplishment throughout the project lifecycle.  Today, I will discuss project planning and how to effectively plan your iterations. Admittedly, there is more to applying the iterative...

Wednesday, September 26, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Iterative and Incremental Principle Series 2: Finding Focus

Welcome back to the second blog in a five part series where I recount my personal experience with applying the Iterative and Incremental principle to my daily life.  As you recall from part one of the series, a conversation with my son prompted me to think about practical applications of the Iterative and Incremental approach and I realized I had incorporated this principle in my exercise regime.    I have been a runner since college but about a year ago, I sustained an injury...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Iterative and Incremental Principle Series 1: The Dreaded Assignment

A few days ago, while making breakfast for my teenage son… he turned to me and happily exclaimed, “I really like how my high school Government class assigns our reading homework.  In middle school, we had to read a chapter each week.  Everyone dreaded it.  In high school, our teacher assigns us a section or two every day.  We still end up reading a chapter each week, but this way is so much easier and I’m actually remembered what I’ve read!” Wow!  Once I recovered from my...

Monday, September 24, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Reflections on the Agile2012 Conference

Last week, I had the great fortune to attend the Agile2012 conference at the lovely Gaylord Texan Hotel in Grapevine, TX, just a short drive (at least by Texas standards) from where I live.  Overall, the conference was a great experience and I am very glad to have had the opportunity to participate.   I picked up a number of ideas for tools and techniques that will most likely find their way into OUM at some point.   It was encouraging to hear real-world agile success stories...

Thursday, August 23, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

A Use Case for the Olympic 100m Final

  Unless you have been hiding away on a desert island, you would probably have seen Usain Bolt win the 100m Gold Medal at the London 2012 Olympics! It would clearly be “absurd” to write a Use Case for such an event, but nevertheless, it serves as a good memory jogger for the various components of a Use Case. Let’s set the scene by having a quick recap, along with a very brief (summarized) description of the major components of a fully dressed1 Use Case: Use Case Name: 4 words or...

Monday, August 13, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Where’s my MD.050?

A question that I’m sometimes asked is “where’s my MD.050 in OUM?” For those not familiar with an MD.050, it serves the purpose of being a Functional Design Document (FDD) in one of Oracle’s legacy Methods. Functional Design Documents have existed for many years with their primary purpose being to describe the functional aspects of one or more components of an IT system, typically, a Custom Extension of some sort. So why don’t we have a direct replacement for the MD.050/FDD...

Tuesday, June 26, 2012 | Transitioning from AIM and AIM for Business Flows | Read More

The Use-Case Driven Approach to Change Management

In the third entry of the series on OUM and PMI’s Pulse of the Profession, we took a look at the continued importance of change management and risk management. The topic of scope change management and OUM’s use-case driven approach has come up in few recent conversations. So I thought I would jot down a few thoughts on how the use-case driven approach aids a project team in managing the project’s scope. Use-case models are one of several tools in OUM used to establish and...

Thursday, May 31, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

OUM and PMI's Pulse of the Profession: The Fifth In a Series

Welcome to the fifth (and final) blog entry of the series on PMI’s 2012 Pulse of the Profession .  The previous blog entry focused on Key Finding #4: Organizations will renew their focus on talent development as they look to grow and gain competitive advantage in new markets.  That entry highlighted how the OUM Training Program prepares project team members in various roles to be effective on an OUM project. In this blog entry we will look at PMI’s Key Finding #5: Despite tight...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM and PMI's Pulse of the Profession: The Fourth In a Series

Welcome to the fourth blog entry of the series on PMI’s 2012 Pulse of the Profession .  The previous blog entry focused on Key Finding #3: As organizations continue to strive for agility, change management and project risk management will become even more important.   That entry discussed how change management and risk management s are documented in the OUM Manage Focus Area, as well as woven into the fabric of the Envision and Implement Focus Areas. In this blog entry we will look...

Tuesday, May 1, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM and PMI's Pulse of the Profession: The Third in a Series

Welcome to the third blog entry of the series on PMI’s 2012 Pulse of the Profession .  The previous blog entry focused on Key Finding #2: The desire for organizational agility will also lead to increased use of iterative and/or incremental project management methods such as agile and extreme.  That entry discussed how agile methodologies, such as OUM, help to enable agility because they are designed to significantly reduce project risk and deliver value much earlier in the...

Tuesday, April 24, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM and PMI's Pulse of the Profession: Second in a Series

Welcome to the second of the series on PMI’s 2012 Pulse of the Profession .  The previous blog entry focused on Key Finding #1: Tight economic conditions will continue to force the issue of strong project portfolio management.   We saw how project portfolio management is supported in OUM by the Envision and Manage Focus Areas.   In this blog entry we will take a look at PMI’s Key Finding #2: The desire for organizational agility will also lead to increased use of iterative and/or...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM and PMI's 2012 Pulse of the Profession: The First in a Series

Taken your pulse lately?  Recently, PMI released their 2012 Pulse of the Profession which contains five key findings based on the results of their global survey: Tight economic conditions will continue to force the issue of strong project portfolio management. The desire for organizational agility will also lead to increased use of iterative and/or incremental project management methods such as agile and extreme. As organizations continue to strive for agility, change management...

Monday, April 9, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Use Case Actors - Primary versus Secondary

The Unified Modeling Language (UML1) defines an Actor (from UseCases) as: An actor specifies a role played by a user or any other system that interacts with the subject. In Alistair Cockburn’s book “Writing Effective Use Cases” (2) Actors are further defined as follows: Primary Actor: The primary actor of a use case is the stakeholder that calls on the system to deliver one of its services. It has a goal with respect to the system – one that can be satisfied by its operation....

Tuesday, March 20, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Developing an Implementation Plan with Iterations by Russ Pitts

Developing an Implementation Plan with Iterations by Russ Pitts  Ok, so you have come to grips with understanding that applying the iterative concept, as defined by OUM is simply breaking up the project effort you have estimated for each phase into one or more six week calendar duration blocks of work. Idea being the business user(s) or key recipient(s) of work product(s) being developed never go longer than six weeks without having some sort of review or prototyping of the...

Monday, March 19, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Use Case Assumptions versus Pre-Conditions

Within the Oracle Unified Method (OUM) we define the following in relation to Use Cases:   Assumptions: Facts we assume to be true, but may later prove to be untrue Pre-Conditions: That which must be true before the Use Case can start Seems pretty clear at this point! But in practice, when would it be appropriate to use an Assumption versus a Pre-Condition within a Use Case? Let’s look at a hypothetical Use Case which represents the creation of an On-Line Sales Order (Internet...

Tuesday, March 13, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

When to call an Oracle Enterprise Architect in on your project

When you aren’t sure about your physical health, what do you do?  Well, you may call in a doctor, maybe even a “specialist”. As a Project Manager, and a PMP, I understand the need to “protect the project”.  Risks should be mitigated early on so that they don’t become issues.  So “When do I call in an Oracle Enterprise Architect (OEA) on my project?”  What signs should I look for to indicate that an OEA is needed?Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to work with Oracle...

Thursday, March 1, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

What comes first…Gap Analysis or Use Case development?

What comes first…Gap Analysis or Use Case development? It’s a good question and one we often get asked, but like most things in an imperfect World, the answer is “it depends!” If we look at the OUM Method Pack and examine the dependencies for the Gap Analysis Tasks, then we see that one of the key pre-requisites are Use Case Specifications. So that means we have to write a Use Case before doing any Gap Analysis…..right?.....well, it depends!!! Consider the following two examples: L...

Monday, February 20, 2012 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Back to the Strategy

Methodologists are much like everyone else in that we are all too crazy busy to spend time reflecting on the past.  However, as I was preparing for a presentation at the 2012 JDE Summit last week, I found myself reflecting on the fact that I had returned to the site of an important milestone in the evolution of OUM. It was seven years ago, in a conference room at the Oracle campus in Broomfield, Colorado, that several legacy Oracle, PeopleSoft and JD Edwards folks got together...

Monday, February 6, 2012 | General | Read More

The Project Management Plan (PMP) in OUM - Creation and Evolution

According to the Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) — Fourth Edition, the Project Management Plan is defined as a formal, approved document that defines how the project is executed, monitored and controlled.  In OUM, the Project Management Plan (better known as the PMP) defines the overall project management strategies and approaches applied to the project.  Since the PMP is considered to be the most important artifact created by the...

Thursday, January 12, 2012 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Do you have OUM work product “samples” to share?

Often I am asked for examples of Oracle Unified Method (OUM) work products.  These requests come from many interested parties; clients, partners and Oracle consultants.  In OUM, the output of a task or activity is called a work product to eliminate the risk of having method deliverables confused with contractual deliverables. Contractual deliverables are specifically referenced in the contract and often have a payment schedule associated with their acceptance....

Friday, December 23, 2011 | Training | Read More

Build Up Or Tailor Down?

OUM is intended to be highly scalable. In our industry today we hear lots of buzzwords around Agile or Agility. We see many methods in today’s marketplace that have adopted an agile approach to software development. The Global Methods team is in strong agreement with the tenets put forth in the “Manifesto for Agile Software Development.” We also see a debate in our industry about agility versus discipline which has been well framed in the book “Balancing Agility and...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Everything is URGENT – a look at Use Case prioritisation.

Everything is urgent. How many times have you heard that? The business needs this functionality to launch a new product, we have to have that piece of functionality to comply with new legislation, our current software licence is expiring. There are a myriad of factors influencing priority how do you deal with them in a way that recognises and mitigates for risk. Yes, risk. How often have you been tempted to put off dealing with difficult or risky functionality? How often has...

Sunday, December 4, 2011 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Oracle Unified Method 5 Essentials Exam (Beta)

Oracle Unified Method 5 Essentials (1Z1-568) exam The Oracle Unified Method Certified Implementation Specialist Certification identifies professionals who are skilled in Oracle’s all inclusive methodology. The certification covers the core features the Oracle Unified Method suite, including but not limited to, Focus Areas, Use Cases, and Requirements Gathering. The certification proves a baseline of the consultant’s knowledge and allows the implementation team to work as a...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011 | Training | Read More

Stakeholder Management in OUM

Where is Stakeholder Management in OUM?  Stakeholder Management typically falls into the purview of the Project Manager, which means much of the associated guidance is found in the OUM Manage Focus Area (a.k.a. Manage).  There is also a good deal of content related to the discipline of Stakeholder Management contained in the Implement Focus Area (a.k.a Implement). There is no process in Manage named Stakeholder Management, but this “touch point” can be found in a variety...

Wednesday, November 23, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM is Flexible and Scalable

Flexible and Scalable Traditionally, projects have been focused on satisfying the contents of a requirements document or rigorously conforming to an existing set of work products. Often, especially where iterative and incremental techniques have not been employed, these requirements may be inaccurate, the previous deliverables may be flawed, or the business needs may have changed since the start of the project. Fitness for business purpose, derived from the Dynamic Systems...

Tuesday, November 15, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

OUM is Business Process and Use Case-Driven

Business Process and Use Case-Driven Business processes and use cases are used as the primary artifacts for establishing the desired behavior of the system and for communicating this behavior among the stakeholders. OUM projects are able to document requirements through business process models, through use cases, and through written supplemental and quality of service requirements. OUM guidance helps implementers to understand where each technique is appropriate and how they...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Tell us your best tip for writing a use case?

Do you have a favorite tip for writing a use case that you would like to share with us?  Here are some of our tips: Use a two-column format. Use structured sentences. Use active verb phrases. Write in the present tense. Avoid compound sentences. Describe the steps by starting every action with "The actor..." or "The system..." Number the steps…but not until you’re done. Each step should contain one testable, traceable requirement. Please feel free to write your best tip in...

Monday, October 31, 2011 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

Iteration vs. Oscillation

What’s the difference between iteration and oscillation?  This is important distinction for an OUM practitioner to be able to articulate – that while OUM is indeed an iterative method; it does not mean you are endlessly oscillating on the same tasks like a washing machine stuck on the rinse cycle.   Since properly applying iterative development principles is vital to an OUM practitioner’s success, this blog explains why, in OUM, iteration doesn’t equate to oscillation. WHAT IT...

Thursday, October 6, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Why not use “just enough” OUM?

Sometimes I hear people say, “Oh, OUM is great, but I’m not sure I can use it for the work I’m doing”. I ask “Why not?”, often I hear one of three answers; I’m working as part of a staff augmentation contract, and there really isn’t a formal “project” for me within the Enterprise. The Enterprise has chosen to use their internal method for this project. Oracle Consulting is not leading the project or the Partner leading the project for the Enterprise is using a proprietary...

Wednesday, September 14, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

It's all down in Black and White.

  In the BI/EPM View of Oracle Unified Method we introduced the idea of Black and White box Use Cases. Black-Box Use Case Black-box use cases capture requirements at the level of observable behavior, but do not reveal the internal workings of the business or system. Most use cases are written at the black-box level to maintain the separation between requirements and design. Within this view, black-box use cases are most applicable to development of a custom BI system, but...

Friday, September 2, 2011 | Requirements, Analysis, and Design | Read More

7 Tips for using Microsoft Word 2007 with OUM Templates

To ensure trouble free operation of the method material, the macro security settings associated with MS Word must be modified.  During product installation, the MS install program establishes all MS Office components with the maximum security setting enabled.  The affect of this setting is to prohibit the execution of any macro code instructions embedded in an MS Word document.  Because the method material uses extensive macro code, the MS Office security level options must...

Thursday, August 25, 2011 | Training | Read More

The Tree

  A couple of weekends ago, my wife and I were out for a bicycle ride on the Washington & Old Dominion (W&OD) - a paved, multi-use trail that stretches 45 miles from Washington, D.C. to Purcellville, VA. We were westbound on a section of the trail between Route 7 and Dry Mill Rd. We were coming up behind a runner when the runner stopped suddenly and looked up. The upper two-thirds of a dead locust tree crashed down across the path. The tree fell harmlessly to the ground, but...

Monday, August 15, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Make the Method Serve You

One bit of feedback that we sometimes hear about the Oracle Unified Method (OUM) is that it's too heavy or that it forces a project to produce too many documents. The implication is that using OUM is too costly. Of course, developing methods that makes it more expensive or difficult to implement Oracle products would be a disservice to Oracle's customers and in opposition to the mission of the Oracle Global Methods organization.This sort of feedback indicates that the...

Thursday, May 12, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Valuing "Working Software over Comprehensive Documentation"

I subscribe to the tenets put forth in the Manifesto for Agile Software Development - http://agilemanifesto.org. As leader of Oracle's Methods team, that might seem a self-deprecating attitude. After all, the agile manifesto tells us that we should value "individuals and interactions" over "processes and tools." My job includes process development.I also subscribe to ideas put forth in a number of subsequent works including Balancing Agility and Discipline: A Guide for...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011 | Planning and Managing | Read More

Oracle AIM, Oracle ABF, and Siebel Results Roadmap Officially Retired as of January 31, 2011

It seems somehow appropriate that the first entry of the Oracle® Unified Method (OUM) blog is about the retirement of several of our legacy methods, most notably AIM Foundation. You can click here to read the official Partner announcement.If you're reading this, you're probably aware that Oracle has been developing OUM to support the entire Enterprise IT lifecycle, including support for the successful implementation of every Oracle product. As Oracle has continued to acquire...

Wednesday, February 16, 2011 | Transitioning from AIM and AIM for Business Flows | Read More
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