Monday Jan 06, 2014

Process Inbox Zero: A resolution your company can actually keep

This time of year, your e-mail is flooded with prognostications and ideas on how to lose weight, how to be healthier, how to be a better employee, a manager and generally be more effective.  I personally have seen several articles about getting my e-mail Inbox to zero.  In fact, January 2nd was unofficially known as Email Overload Day, though ironically enough, you might not have known about it if your email is overflowing.  :)

This got me thinking about the other "Inbox" that exists in every corporation.  It's the old school tray of papers, stacked up in the "Inbox" on the desks of those that are handling business transactions using paper forms, faxes, scanned images and other files.  For most business process professionals, this stack of papers is a key first step in a longer transaction that ultimately results in payment to a customer or vendor, receipt of funds from a customer or partner, or any other of many possible business processes.

The same principles that apply to your personal e-mail and the ideal of an empty Inbox should apply to how inbound documents are handled.  In fact, given the financial impact on the business when these are not processed optimally, getting these processes running smoothly is MUCH more important.  If you agree with the premise that paper-based processes need to be running as fast as possible, WebCenter can help you achieve the needed improvements.

The key to all this is automation.  Automation of the "ingestion" process - how files are captured, scanned, received and then recognized.  Form and character recognition has matured significantly over the past few years and today, with Oracle Forms Recognition technology as an example, inbound forms can be recognized as contracts, invoices or many other form types and then have the line item details automatically identified and associated with the right vendor, customer ID, PO number or other value.  Instead of having a pile of paper on an employees desk, waiting to be re-keyed into an ERP or related system, now it happens automatically and only the unrecognizable exceptions will require human intervention.

As you can imagine, the cost savings in  automating repetitive transactional processes are significant.  Most imaging automation deployments see a return on the investment in 18 months or less.  Human error is also greatly reduced, to say nothing of the additional archiving and compliance benefits.

To help companies understand the benefits of automating business processes, we've put together a number of assets in a single location that showcase how Oracle WebCenter Imaging can help your business... and how we have already helped others.

Getting your "Process Inbox" to zero is an achievable goal. The onslaught of incoming documents may never stop, but at least you will have a vastly superior way of managing the flow of information going forward and be saving significant sums in the (pardon the pun) process.

Check out our new WebCenter Imaging information page to learn more. 

Have a great 2014!

Tuesday Dec 10, 2013

Document Management can drive you crazy!

It is hard to believe but here we are, approaching 2014, and many companies find themselves as befuddled as ever over basic document management challenges. At least, I think they should be "basic" by this time. After all, document and content management technologies have been around for a long time now. Shouldn't most companies have solved these problems and moved on by now?  Turns out, the answer is a definite NO and arguably, the problem is worse than it has ever been.

In a article published by CIO Insight earlier this year, the results of a Harris Interactive poll showed just how pervasive document management challenges are. With more than 1000 knowledge workers across the U.S. and the U.K. participating in the poll, here are some of the interesting results.

83% of knowledge workers lose or waste time every day on document-collaboration issues

In Search Of ... 
73% meet with challenges in simply looking for files.

Identity Crisis  
57% get confused about whether the documents they're accessing are the "right" ones.

48% admit they've emailed the wrong version to a boss, client or coworker.

Mistaken Situation 
47% say they've worked on the wrong version of a document.

Anger Management
33% will yell at their computers.

It's 5 O'Clock Somewhere ...
21% will head to a bar.

78% feel these situations are more frustrating than locking their keys in the car.

64% say these situations are worse than having to work on a weekend.

Why does this happen? Most organizations already have some sort of document management system. Doesn't that solve basic versioning and search problems? Not necessarily! Sometimes they have too many of them which simply magnifies the "where is that document located" problem.  Now factor in the use of multiple consumer-oriented cloud file sharing systems like Dropbox, SkyDrive and Google Drive and the business challenges simply get worse!

So what is the answer? Here at Oracle, we help customers use WebCenter to simplify their approach to document and content management by consolidating wherever possible so that older systems can be put into maintenance mode and information can be more easily discovered by users or even within key business processes. But it is never that simple when humans are involved and users have to see the benefits of keeping their files in a single location before they will really get in the habit of using a content management system on a daily basis. It takes time but once users experience the joys of being able to find the right files quickly and in the context of their daily work, they tend to see the light pretty quickly.

It's not a problem that can go ignored as the impacts on business are too significant. Check out our latest infographic on the subject to learn more about why storing information in a scatter-shot manner is a very bad idea.

Be sure to check out our new WebCenter Content home page where you can find additional information to make the best decisions for your business when it comes to document and content management.  It will help make sure the knowledge workers in your company do not have to work weekends, they won't feel the need to yell at their computers and you won't drive them to drink.

Thursday Dec 05, 2013

Are You Ready to Manage 50x the Amount of Business Content?

Evernote Export

50 X

The amount of information companies have to manage is expected to grow by 50x in the next decade. Yet already some 90 percent of documents, images, and other unstructured content is un-managed. So it is no surprise that 87 percent of organizations blame performance issues on information growth. 

"Many companies try to homebrew content management. This will work for a while, but at some point you reach critical mass. You can't find content. There is no versioning. You don't know who made changes," says Tom Turchioe, CTO, Critigen. "These are the things that drive you toward an enterprise-class solution such as 
Oracle WebCenter Content."

And as the sheer volume and variety of content proliferates, so do risks. It is estimated that 20 percent of chief information officers in regulated industries will lose their jobs by 2016 for failing to implement the discipline of information governance. Meanwhile, employees are spending an estimated nine hours per week searching for and not finding content—at cost of US$14,000 per worker per year. 

Assess Your Content Management Strategy
Now, a new, easy-to-use self-assessment tool helps companies measure the effectiveness of their current content management system. More than just cost savings, it identifies opportunities to maximize the value of structured and unstructured content. Specifically, the tool measures performance in terms of

  • Information access
  • Content infrastructure
  • Content-enabled business processes
  • Information governance

About Oracle Enterprise Content Management
Besides a unified repository to house unstructured content, Oracle WebCenter Content provides the tools to deliver content to business users in the proper format and within context of familiar applications to fit the way they work. In addition, it

  • Integrates content within critical business applications such as Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle’s PeopleSoft, and Oracle’s JD Edwards
  • Introduces consistent rules governing content access, location, retention, and disposal
  • Provides secure, controlled mobile access
  • Integrates with a variety of systems via Oracle Fusion Middleware
  • Manages all documents from creation to end-of-life

Get more information about Oracle WebCenter Content.

There's more of this great content in this November's WebCenter Newsletter

Subscribe for more content every other month.

Deliver Superior Business Efficiency with Enterprise Content Management

Wednesday Dec 04, 2013

Oracle WebCenter Best Practices

Evernote Export

Get best practices and deployment advice from Oracle expert John Brunswick in today's post. Passionate about both business and technology, John focuses on maximizing IT's ability to streamline and optimize business

Five Best Practices for Global Content Management

Managing an enterprise content repository is no small task, but if properly set up with a foundation that leverages best practices, the repository can provide significant value that increases over time. It is difficult to justify the investment of time to retrofit these techniques, so incorporating them at the start of your enterprise content management initiative is essential.

  • Inheritance. Mature content management solutions enable content items to inherit characteristics of the parent area they are placed into. This capability is your biggest ally in the battle to maintain quality information in your repository. Using an inheritance scheme lets you benefit from the automatic application of security, workflow, required metadata, categorization, and ownership rules to content.
  • Foundational structure. Create a foundation of areas within the repository on the basis of geography, line of business, or a nested combination of both. There are many good taxonomy guides available online to help in this effort.
  • Contribution privilege control. Require that users requesting to create new areas within the global repository state the business purpose, staffing resources, and effort required. This adds accountability, which helps ensure the longevity of the repository.
  • Creation and management of content. Use the information provided when contribution access was requested to ensure that any necessary security and/or workflow is applied. Use an alias attached to areas in the repository to map ownership. Update the alias when users change business units or leave.
  • Retirement. With an analytic foundation to monitor all content activity, it is possible act on performance thresholds that should be established during the request of contribution privileges. For example, if a content item has not been opened in five years, its inclusion in the repository should be reevaluated. Unused content clutters browsing and search results, drastically reducing usability.

Read more in-depth information about best practices for global content management.

Read more from John Brunswick.

There's more of this great content in this November's WebCenter Newsletter

Subscribe for more content every other month.

Deliver Superior Business Efficiency with Enterprise Content Management

Wednesday Nov 20, 2013

Reducing Costs and Improving Business Efficiency with Enterprise Content Management

As a lot of you know, there are many benefits that come with managing content properly and efficiently across the organization, the true measure of success is demonstrated in real-life business scenarios. How any organization manages content has a direct impact on business efficiency, employee productivity, IT infrastructure complexity, and certainly, the bottom line.

With that in mind, we have compiled a collection of Oracle WebCenter Content customers to showcase the specific benefits that each of them have realized.   While every vendor in the ECM space talks about the value that can be realized from effective content and information management, the proof ultimately comes from existing customers and the real-life value that they are realizing. This most recent compilation of customer success stories includes testimonials and examples from Toyo Engineering, Texas A&M University, Schneider National, Mortenson Construction and others.

Click this link to take a look at these various customer case studies and see for yourself how Oracle WebCenter Content can make a real difference. We think you will gain insights into how you can do the same within your organization and realize new successes of your own. 

Tuesday Nov 19, 2013

Taming the SharePoint Beast

Microsoft SharePoint has been around for over a decade now and many companies have it in use to some degree, either departmentally or across the company. And most of these companies will tell you that when it comes to managing the growth of content and information, SharePoint introduces some, ahem, challenges. SharePoint sites tend to proliferate out of control and this eventually introduces many of the same headaches that companies were looking to overcome when they deployed SharePoint as a replacement for file shares.

For many organizations, integrating SharePoint with Oracle WebCenter is an ideal solution to reduce storage costs, improve archiving and retention policy adherence and lower operating costs. Be sure to join Fishbowl Solutions and Oracle on Thursday, November 21st as they discuss the business benefits of storing and managing content created in SharePoint within Oracle WebCenter Content. Members of Fishbowl's and Oracle's product management staff will discuss and demonstrate how the features of each of their SharePoint integration's can help you and your organization ensure compliance, reduce storage costs, and improve content accessibility.

Make plans now to attend and learn for yourself how Fishbowl Solutions and Oracle have positioned their connector integrations to solve specific content management business problems that organizations have encountered with SharePoint.

Attendees of this webinar will learn:

  • The business benefits of storing and managing content in Oracle WebCenter
  • Use cases for Fishbowl's and Oracle's integration with SharePoint
  • Which integration option is best for you and your organization

Date: November 21st, 2013

Time: 1:00 - 2:00 PM EST, 12 - 1:00 PM CST

Click Here To Register

UPDATE:  The webinar recording is available and can be accessed here:

Sunday Nov 17, 2013

Just how bad is your current content management strategy?

For many companies, content management is an after thought.  Valuable documents, forms, images, videos and countless other forms of content are scattered across applications, shared drives, local drives and various repositories. To make matters worse, a lot of the information in these locations is garbage - it has no remaining value.  Companies find themselves storing strategic plans and executive presentations along with the announcement flyer from last years ice cream social.  It's time to demand better.

The more your company grows, the worse this problem gets.  At some point, something has to be done in order to get information under control.  The endless growth of documents, files and other information eventually demands your attention but where should you first focus your efforts?  Every company is different and is going to have different areas that need immediate attention. To that end, we have developed a very quick and easy online assessment tool that will help you develop an initial set of focus areas.  You cannot (and should not) try to solve every problem at once, so setting the right priorities is essential.

Our goal here on the Oracle WebCenter team is to help customers make the right decisions about how to manage information and then deliver it in a way that optimizes the desired user experience.  We encourage you to consider how you manage and store your most valuable information, how you sort the proverbial wheat from the chaff, and make the most of the resources you have available.  

Check out our new WebCenter Content information page for more details and insights on how your company can be as efficient as possible. Then let us know how we can help your company in the same way we have helped so many others.

Monday Nov 11, 2013

Becoming the well-integrated content company (and combating AIUTLVFS)

Every single day, each of us create more and more content. Sometimes it is brand new material and many times it is iterations of existing content, but no one would argue that information and content growth is growing at an almost exponential rate.

With all this content being created and stored, a number of problems naturally arise. One of the most common issues that users run into is "Am I Using The Latest Version of this File Syndrome", or AIUTLVFS. This insidious syndrome is all too common and results in ineffective, poor or downright wrong business decisions being made.  When content or files are unavailable or incorrect within the scope of key business processes, the chance for erroneous and costly business decisions is magnified even further.

For many companies, the ideal scenario is to be able to connect multiple business systems, both old and new, into one common content repository.  Not only does this reduce content duplication, it also helps guarantee that everyone in various departments is working off the proverbial "same page".  Sounds simple - but for many organizations, the proliferation of file shares, SharePoint sites, and other storage silos of content keep the dream of a more efficient business a distant one.

We've created some online assets to help you in your evaluation and eventual improvement of your current content management and delivery systems. Take a few minutes to check out our Online Assessment Tool.  It's quick, easy and just might provide you with insights into how you can improve your current content ecosystem. While you are there, check out our new Infographic that outlines common issues faced by companies today. Feel free to save our informative Infographic PDF and share it with business colleagues and your management to help them understand the business costs and impact of inaction. Together we can stop AIUTLVFS in its tracks and run our businesses more effectively than ever.

Additionally, we hope you will take a few minutes to visit our new and informative webpages dedicated to the value of a well connected, fully integrated content management system. It's a great place to learn more about how integrating WebCenter Content into your infrastructure can lower your operational costs while boosting process and worker efficiency.

Wednesday Oct 16, 2013

Save Paper, Time and Money with a Fully Integrated Invoice Processing System

Oracle Corporation
Get the Guide: Delivering a Cost Efficient and Integrated A/P Soluttion

Save Paper, Time and Money with a Fully Integrated Invoice Processing System

Organizations today are looking to implement document imaging to help manage multiple business processes and realize the benefits of automation across their enterprises. With Oracle WebCenter Imaging, and its out-of-the-box integrations to Oracle Applications, companies can create a complete transactional content management platform and extend the benefits throughout the entire organization.

We encourage you to read our guide, Delivering a Cost Efficient and Integrated A/P Automation Solution with Oracle WebCenter Imaging to learn how to:

  • Get a fast, rapid ROI by automating image process for accounts payables
  • Fully understand the value of automating form and image processing and integration with Oracle E-Business Suite
  • Extend the benefits by leveraging the same imaging infrastructure to automate other business processes
Download the white paper today and learn more about how you can automate important business processes.
Register Now

Monday Oct 14, 2013

World Paper Free Day is Coming Next Week

Hello Everyone,

I am willing to bet that most of you have never heard of "World Paper Free Day" but yes, there really is such a thing!  Basically, it is a volunteer initiative to help businesses understand how reliance on paper-based processes can have a detrimental effect on how efficient your business is.  Here at Oracle, we are big believers in eliminating reliance on paper and all the problems it causes.  You may have seen one of our recent webcasts on the subject, or viewed one of our recent customer testimonials. Whatever the case, we encourage you to step back and evaluate the processes you have in place today and ask yourself, could this be better if the capture, scanning and routing of inbound documents, faxes and images was automated?

For many companies, the obvious first place to start is Accounts Payable Invoicing as pretty much every company on earth has an AP department.  But there are many other areas within a business that can benefit from process automation.  It might be the Procurement process, or General Ledger, or Sales Contract management or a Human Resource Management process.

World Paper Free Day is October 24th.  Why not make it a milestone for your organization and make it the day that you reconsider how you do business, and consider how Oracle WebCenter Imaging Solutions can help you make a change for the better. 

To see what other Oracle customers are already doing to save money and be more efficient, view our collection of customers success stories here.

Tuesday Oct 01, 2013

Digital Signatures for Oracle WebCenter: Speeding up processes and guaranteeing authenticity

digital signature is basically a way to ensure that an electronic document (e-mail, spreadsheet, text file, etc.) is authentic. Authentic means that you know who created the document and you know that it has not been altered in any way since that person created it.  For many document workflows and processes, guaranteeing authenticity is critical and in many cases, it is required for compliance purposes.  Organizations are increasingly investing in Enterprise Content Management and Business Process Management automation to enhance their operations, increase efficiencies and ensure compliance, not to mention the hopes of cutting costs. Unfortunately unless they are also implementing a compliant and standards based digital signature solution that is integrated into the enterprise, their overall ROI on these investments is greatly reduced due to the inefficiencies of having to print, sign, and scan signature-dependent documents.

Our friends at ARX and Bezzotech have focused their expertise in this area and are hosting a webcast on Thursday of this week, in conjunction with the IOUG, to educate and inform you about the value of adding digital signatures to documents or other files within WebCenter Content. 

Be sure to join them for "E-Signatures in Oracle WebCenter Content" on Thursday, October 3, 2013 12:00 PM- 1:00 PM CST.  You can register for the event by clicking this link.  You can also learn more at and

Thursday Sep 05, 2013

What WebCenter info will you gain this year at OpenWorld?

Oracle OpenWorld 2013 is all about learning new things and gaining new insights that will help you and your business be more effective and successful. For many organizations, getting a handle on how information such as forms, faxes and other documents is a key focus area because there is a large and fast return on investment potential (and who doesn't want to see that!!).

That is where WebCenter Content and Imaging come in to play. It might be true that forms processing doesn't have that much sizzle, but as we all know, the CIO and CFO care a lot more about saving money and cutting operational costs then the latest sexy toy.  Forms processing is indeed a bit of an "unsung hero" but probably deserves another look by most companies.

Before you show up at OpenWorld this year, check out this blog post by our friends Dwayne Parkinson and Dan Stitely over at Team Informatics on the issue and then stop by and talk to them directly in the Oracle Demogrounds this year. You and your boss might be very glad you did!

And for a full list of Oracle WebCenter related sessions, labs and event, be sure to visit the Focus On WebCenter page.

Tuesday Sep 03, 2013

Oracle OpenWorld 13: Learning from the success of others

September is upon us and that can only mean one thing - OpenWorld is just around the corner!  One of the best things about the show for WebCenter customers is the chance to learn from other customers about what worked, what did not and how to get the most value from your information and the infrastructure that supports it all.

All of us want to help our organizations save money and be more efficient.  Logitech is one company that will be speaking this year about how they did just that using WebCenter Imaging and related technologies. Logitech is a global provider of personal computer accessories. Their Accounts Payable department was manually processing over 90,000 AP invoices, 100,000 employee expense reports, and 12,000 smart claims per year.  With this kind of load, they were understandably having difficulty managing the increased workload of manual data entry and complex validations. Physically entering the data into Oracle® Financials led to a large number of data inaccuracies and exceptions, creating a long cycle for purchase order to payment disbursement.

With support from Keste, a leading WebCenter business partner, Logitech was able to save many thousands of dollars a year and radically improve business operating efficiency.  How did they do it?  How much did they save?  There is only one way to find out... join us on Monday morning, September 23rd at 10:45 am in the Moscone West 2014 room to hear all the details!

To see the full list of sessions dedicated to WebCenter, check out the online guide at

We hope to see you in San Francisco later this month!

Wednesday Aug 21, 2013

Digital Signatures and Oracle WebCenter: The Future Is Now

Today's blog post showcases the Digital Signature solution for Oracle WebCenter Content provided by one of our many business partners, ARX. 

Affordably automate your signature dependent processes with the proper standards, controls, and integrity using CoSign® by ARX

As more and more organizations adopt paper-free processes and automate their document-based workflows, the “wet ink” signature requirement stands out as something of an evolutionary laggard. CoSign digital signatures are already in widespread use. They leverage open standards to allow paperless processes that are fast, secure compliant, and reliable.

The CoSign Connector for Oracle WebCenter Content (WCC) allows users to access CoSign features directly within the WCC interface and leverages repository features including workflow, revision control, and content security. Documents can be digitally signed, verified, and reviewed from WCC browser screens. No software installation is needed on the user’s PC. The ability to quickly view digital signature metadata indicating who signed, when they signed, and why not only increases your business process velocity but also its reliability because CoSign-signed documents have effect wherever they travel. The digital signature can be examined for trust and integrity without re-connecting to CoSign or WCC. Compliant digital signature features are accessible from WCC action menus and the connector provides a user friendly signing ceremony page for ad hoc and/or high volume signing.

Additionally, CoSign by ARX can be deployed as a single signing solution for all your Oracle® systems and managed content. By being compatible with your major content authoring applications, such as, PDF, Word, and Excel, the CoSign digital signature travels with the document for the remainder of its lifecycle because the native application can inspect the digital signature for proof of document integrity, signer identity, and signer intent without proprietary verification software. CoSign also meets the needs of organizations in the most tightly regulated industries by providing digital signatures that are legally enforceable and that allow compliance with industry and worldwide regulations including ESIGN, UETA, EU directives and HIPAA, FDA Title 21 CFR Part 11, SOX, & PIPEDA.

To learn more about the CoSign Connector for WebCenter, please view the CoSign Connector for Oracle WCC demo visit, or contact the ARX team directly at to schedule a consultation. 

Tuesday Aug 20, 2013

Oracle WebCenter Content: Digital Asset Management

This week, we are going to touch on a topic that doesn't get much hype, but is extremely important in your content management strategy: Digital Asset Management!

Oracle WebCenter Content’s digital asset management capability allows organizations to store, find, view, and use digital assets and rich media quickly and easily. Content, collateral, and individual asset items can be made available instantly in the appropriate formats for use on Web sites, in print materials, or in other programs. Assets can be protected and controlled through rich and configurable access control. Oracle’s digital asset management solution automates routine tasks, such as the process of creating multiple renditions, allowing you to effectively manage and appropriately use your rich media assets. 

Catalog Your Assets for Secure and Instant Access
Global 2000 organizations are constantly seeking better ways to effectively communicate with  and provide value to their employees, business partners, and consumers. Rich media and  digital content are used both as consumer product and as assets in a wide range activities  range of activities including advertising, sales and marketing, manufacturing, and distance  learning. However, providing rich media can creates unique burdens on an organization.  Some rich media solutions require high cost specialized hardware and software. Accessing  large files from a central storage location creates increased network load. Lastly, providing a  method for users to securely access, share, and modify digital content can be cumbersome.

Oracle WebCenter Content helps you address these issues by providing easy access to find  and use your rich assets quickly and easily from anywhere. With Oracle WebCenter Content  you can quickly create renditions of digital content by turning large images, video, or audio files into high-resolution, low-resolution, resized, or thumbnail versions based upon your business needs. 

Manage Rich Media Files Effectively
Oracle WebCenter Content enables automation of routine tasks and effectively manages rich  media files. With secure Web-based access, employees across your organization can quickly and easily access, share, reuse, and modify digital content. Oracle WebCenter Content  provides a rich set of digital asset management features, including 
  • Workflow, version control, security, archiving, subscriptions, content conversion,  collaboration, record disposition, and Web publication assets leveraging core capabilities of Oracle WebCenter Content 
  • Content check-in and accessibility from anywhere with Web-based and Windows Explorer interfaces 
  • Compression of content to decrease bandwidth demands 
  • Automatic categorization of assets for easy searching 
  • Quick identifying of files via automatically created thumbnail renditions  
  • Asset selection and download in one operation 
  • Secure content distribution - easily and quickly 
Provide a Foundation for Key Business Applications 

Oracle WebCenter Content digital asset management capability provides the underlying  foundation for a variety of key business applications, such as the following: 

Image Management Application
With Oracle’s digital asset management solution, you can easily manage popular image formats such as PSD (Photoshop document), JPEG, GIF, BMP, and TIFF files; store unlimited image renditions in one source for quick reuse of any format or size; and automatically format images to the appropriate size, shape, resolution, or aspect ratio. Multiple renditions, including thumbnails, Web versions, and print versions, are automatically created and compressed at the time of check-in for use in HTML pages or marketing collateral—saving thousands of hours of manual labor in resaving files. 

Video Management Application
Oracle’s digital asset management solution allows you to work with common video formats such as MPEG, QuickTime, Windows Media, and MP3 files; pinpoint specific scenes of video using a storyboard; and view them immediately. You can store multiple renditions of video in one source for various bandwidth and size requirements and integrate resulting files with streaming servers. With Oracle’s digital asset management solution, you can easily access storyboards and closed-captioned text, while administrators can configure the system to generate appropriate proxies and metadata.

Be sure to check back later in the week, as we will have some exciting assets and a customer case study you won't want to miss! 


Oracle WebCenter is the center of engagement for business—powering exceptional experiences for customers, partners, and employees. It connects people, process, and information with the most complete portfolio of portal, Web experience management, content, imaging and collaboration technologies.


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