By Leah Yomtovian Roush, Oracle Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Integration, Corporate Development
For many companies, mergers and acquisitions (M&A) are a key strategy for competing in the marketplace and meeting long-term growth objectives. But when it comes to M&A, deals that look great on paper can fail to meet their business goals if integration is not completed quickly.
This is because companies deliver value to customers through the end-to-end experience that surrounds their offerings, and protracted uncertainty about that experience can lead customers to look elsewhere for stability and security. It’s the same for employees. Top talent has many employment options, so people who feel uncertain about their status or work tools and processes may look for new opportunities.
For those companies that have not yet been able to achieve a single ERP instance, the cloud makes it easier to get there.”
With a single, centralized ERP instance, however, companies can quickly merge operations, eliminate uncertainty, and realize the value associated with M&A, with the combination becoming more than the sum of its parts. The absence of a single system brings complexity, which not only increases costs and hinders agility, but also prolongs the M&A integration timeline. At Oracle, for instance, we simplified our processes and standardized on our own central corporate system over a decade ago, and as a result, over the past 10 years, we have saved billions of dollars, increased employee productivity, continuously innovated based on our customers’ needs, and rapidly integrated more than 100 acquisitions.
For those companies that have not yet been able to achieve a single ERP instance, the cloud makes it easier to get there. Rather than depend on highly technical, highly skilled resources to run and maintain corporate systems while making the move to a global single instance, the cloud simplifies this shift, pushing the operational burden and associated resourcing requirements to cloud service providers.
In addition, because the cloud requires no additional hardware, no time is wasted obtaining and installing IT infrastructure. As such, companies can quickly and easily roll out across multiple regions and divisions and add more users as the business grows.
Cloud systems are automatically upgraded and constantly benefitting from new capabilities.”For those companies that already have an on-premises single instance, moving to the cloud not only eliminates IT operations headaches and hardware costs but it also provides the ability to continuously modernize processes and innovate operations to support changing customer needs and ensure the delivery of maximum value. Unlike centralized on-premises systems, which are difficult to upgrade and often remain stuck in time at the moment of their go-live date, cloud systems are automatically upgraded and constantly benefitting from new capabilities delivered by the vendor. Thus the cloud makes it simple for companies to utilize emerging technologies, such as machine learning and chatbots, that provide new opportunities to automate tasks, free up resources to focus on higher-value activities, and deliver better experiences. In addition, cloud systems are malleable, enabling companies to shift and change at the speed of their customers.
Since beginning our move to the cloud, Oracle has continuously taken advantage of cutting-edge technology and looked for new opportunities to optimize our business processes and innovate the experience we provide our customers. And as a result, integrated businesses get the benefit of our ever-improving operations. In addition, with the cloud, Oracle is able to seize the opportunity, each time we acquire a new company, to learn and incorporate differentiating ideas that enable us to deliver even more value to our customers.
The bottom line: although change can cause unease, we believe we can best meet our customers’ and employees’ needs and realize our long-term growth potential by quickly integrating acquired businesses into our centralized cloud system, which we continue to optimize for operational excellence.
Photography by Bob Adler/Studio at Getty Images for Oracle