Busy OpenWorld for Oracle Usability Advisory Board Features Deep-Dive into Fusion Applications User Centered Design Process

Anna Wichansky, Senior Director, Applications User Experience

Anna Wichansky

The last several weeks have been exceptionally busy for members of the Oracle Usability Advisory Board, many of whom attended on-campus events at the Redwood Shores Usability Labs, as well as activities at Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco, October 2-6, 2011.

The Friday before OpenWorld, 20 board members took a deep dive into how the Applications UX team developed its ground-breaking new user experience for Fusion Applications. The Apps UX team, accompanied by Oracle Fusion Apps developers, presented a full day workshop, entitled A Day in the Life of User Experience.

Talks included how the user-centered design process was incorporated into the applications development process, with concrete case studies for Fusion Applications Human Capital Management (HCM) and Fusion Financials General Ledger (Figure 1). Design artifacts such as low- and high-fidelity prototypes were shown, and early-cycle evaluation methods such as productivity analysis were explained. Developers were present to attest to the value of incorporating the user-centered design process early and often into their own work processes. How it all gets built through the use of Oracle Fusion Middleware and Fusion UX design patterns was also detailed.


Figure 1. OUAB customers and guests listen to a review of Fusion Applications HCM UX development by Oracle UX and product managers. Oracle Usability Labs, Redwood Shores, California, September 30, 2011 (photo by Martin Taylor)

The day was topped off with a tour of the Redwood Shores Usability Labs, including demonstrations of new large screen technologies that can facilitate collaborative work. Customers were also able to try out the portable eye-tracking system with visual designs for the Fusion Applications screens.

Board members said in follow-up surveys that all the events were useful or very useful in helping them think about and plan for improved user experiences for their applications upgrades, migrations, and customizations to Oracle Application platforms. Two favorite talks were on the Fusion design patterns, which are now available to selected Oracle customers, and UX-Direct, a UX consulting service for Oracle customers. Some sample comments:

"I came away with an appreciation of the expertise that Oracle has developed."

"How will I find a UX champion for our organization?"

"We need to see if there is a way to start building in some UX, user feedback, usability into the HCM roll outs, changes or upgrades."

"It's good to know where Oracle's focuses are. Eventually we will follow Oracle's lead."

This program was originally developed to support Oracle Applications Marketing initiatives with Oracle ACE Directors by Misha Vaughan, User Experience Architect, and adapted to fit the special needs of the OUAB by the presenters.

"After customers see Fusion for the first time they ask, ‘how did Oracle do that?’  This event is one way for Oracle to educate customers on the unique value of the Fusion User Experience and how it was developed."

“An unexpected benefit we see from the day, is how motivated customers are to try scaled-down versions of Oracle’s user experience processes on their own implementations and roll-outs.”

Other OpenWorld OUAB events:

  • Presentation at the E-Business Suite User Group SIG, chaired by OUAB members Donna Rosentrater, TJX  Companies, and Kathleen Fauerbach, City of Las Vegas, on how the board and other sources of customer feedback  have influenced R12 releases.
  • Presentation at the Procurement SIG, hosted by Steve Jolly, Genpact, and chaired by OUAB member Ketan Thanki, Ameron International, on how user feedback influenced design of Fusion Self-Service Procurement.
  • Annual Worldwide OUAB Luncheon, held at the Marriott Marquis Hotel, San Francisco, attended by 40 board members, Applications UX managers, and Oracle board guest speakers in 2011 (Figure 2).
  • OUAB Meeting held at the Marriot Marquis Hotel, San Francisco, featuring a panel of Fusion Applications Early Adopters on their perceptions of the Fusion Applications user experience. The panelists were OUAB member Sharon Steffen, Principal Financial Group;  Sheryl Johnson, PriceWaterhouseCoopers LLC; and Kathleen Kelly, The Professional Golfers Association. Other customer speakers included OUAB members Chuck Abell, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory; Joel Albert, Chevron; and Basheer Khan, Innowave Technologies.

Figure 2. Members and guests of the Oracle Usability Advisory Board at their Annual International Luncheon, Oracle OpenWorld, San Francisco, October 4, 2011. From left to right: Tim Shank, PGA and guest; DJ Ursal, Oracle; Thao Nguyen, Oracle; Candi Bashiri, Wind River Systems; Erika Webb, Oracle; Jude Carney, and John Lewis Partnership. (Photo provided by DJ Ursal)

Customer content in board meetings is controlled through confidential disclosure agreements with Oracle. Additional public information is available on this website: Oracle Usability Advisory Board, Get Involved: UX Customer Participation Program.


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