By Marc Weintraub on Apr 02, 2014
The Higher Education User Group (HEUG) Alliance 14 conference took place in Las Vegas, NV last month and was a roaring success. Over 4,250 attendees participated in the event which is focused on Higher Education and Public Sector institutions using Oracle applications and technology. The vast majority of attendees at the event are PeopleSoft applications customers. The event kicked off with some major announcements from Oracle about its continued and committed investment in the Higher Education industry. These announcements were:
- Planned future release of a PeopleSoft Campus Solutions 9.2
- Development of a totally new, cloud-based student information system
- Continued enhancement of Oracle ERP Cloud solutions to address the industry specific requirements of Higher Education institutions
In addition to these key announcements, the Alliance conference featured over 400 sessions were delivered by customers and partners with Oracle leading over 75 sessions focused on PeopleSoft. Jeff Robbins’ (Senior Director PeopleTools Strategy) “PeopleSoft General Session: Technology Update and Roadmap” session was the PeopleSoft highlight of the event with over 2,000 attendees. Other key Oracle led PeopleSoft sessions included:
- What's New in PeopleSoft Human Capital Management 9.2 and Beyond by John Webb and Maria Ana Santiago
- PeopleSoft Financials 9.2 Value & Roadmap: Do Much More with Less by Amira Morcos
- PeopleSoft Supplier Lifecycle Management 9.2 and Beyond by Alexandra Dhillon
- PeopleSoft Grants, Contracts, Projects 9.2 Value and Roadmap by Melanie Stapelman
- PeopleSoft New User Experience and Mobile Applications by Maria Ana Santiago
- Optimizing Maintenance Strategies Using PeopleSoft Update Manager by Mike Krajicek
The Alliance conference is always a great opportunity for the PeopleSoft team to interact with customers and listen to their feedback. This year the team met with dozens of customers and the overwhelming sentiment was the investments Oracle is making in PeopleSoft are the right ones and are adding value to their organizations. Customer’s expressed to the PeopleSoft team that what’s already been delivered in PeopleSoft 9.2 are “really good solutions”. One customer went as far to say, “The Activity Guide is the single biggest feature for them in their PeopleSoft 9.2 upgrade.” The newly redesigned user interface and marketplace integrations in PeopleSoft eProcurement 9.2 drew praise from customers. End users can intuitively requisition goods and seamlessly search marketplace items with supported integration to partner solutions.
Customer attendees at Alliance 14 also shared with the PeopleSoft team their efforts to expand the use of mobile solutions within PeopleSoft. There was a lot of discussion surrounding how to deliver PeopleSoft via a more modern, intuitive, and responsive user interface. Alliance 14 attendees look forward to when they can get the power of PeopleSoft into the hands of people on their campuses including Principal Investigators and Project Managers. In addition to mobility, Supplier Lifecycle Management (SLM) is an important focus area for the Higher Education and Public Sector customers who attend Alliance conferences as it is for many other PeopleSoft customers. Event attendees are happy with the PeopleSoft capabilities for self-service supplier onboarding already delivered in PeopleSoft 9.2. Customers shared with us their desire to see these capabilities expanded on in the future.
Legislative changes were also hot topics of discussion and feedback during the conference. These ranged from topics like DOMA, ACA, and OFCCP to the growing need for greater transparency in how institutions track and report funds. Attendees were pleased to see the PeopleSoft team led sessions addressing these topics. Furthermore customers were happy to see the PeopleSoft team’s heavy focus on increasing the flexibility of PeopleSoft applications allowing them to adapt their processes and systems. This focus ultimately means PeopleSoft customers can address the legislative changes more effectively and at a lower cost.
While the PeopleSoft team greatly appreciates feedback from our customers; customers at Alliance 14 conveyed their gratitude towards the PeopleSoft team for listening to their needs and ensuring their requirements were incorporated in to PeopleSoft applications. As an attendee from the University of Kansas said, “Meeting with the PeopleSoft team justifies coming to the conference.” This goes to show that participating in PeopleSoft user groups, whether they be HEUG, Quest, or OHUG (Oracle HCM Users Group) is a good way to be hear and influence the direction of PeopleSoft.