Thursday Jul 12, 2012

Extending the Power of Oracle WebCenter Content Through CARA

Guest post provided by Oracle Partner, Generis.

The power of Oracle WebCenter Content – extended through CARA

Oracle WebCenter Content just got a great companion product – CARA from Generis, an Oracle Gold Partner. CARA is a web-based interface on top of WebCenter Content and it provides both a high-performance / high functionality end-user experience, as well as a full suite of configuration tools that allow you to build a business use case for Oracle WebCenter without coding. CMSwire recently reviewed CARA and called it “a pretty slick tool”.

Free Webinar from Generis and Oracle

John Klinke from Oracle and James Kelleher from Generis will be running a demo of CARA for Oracle WebCenter on 19th July 2012 at 11am Eastern Time (USA). This demo will feature the CARA user interface and configuration layer, focusing on the benefits to end users as well as the configuration layer and the associated ROI savings from configuring Oracle WebCenter to meet your requirements rather than coding.

Sign up here for the webinar.

About CARA

So what does CARA offer on top of the Oracle WebCenter? There are two main aspects.

1) A fast, efficient user interface. Slow UIs are one of the biggest reasons that Content Management projects fail. The second biggest reason is if the UI is “unfit for purpose” and the CARA UI has evolved over the last few years based on direct studies with user groups. The team from Generis spent time looking at how users work – how they create content, relate it, push it through the lifecycle – and finding ways of reducing clicks, showing more information on a single screen, and doing intelligent automation based on the system predicting what users are going to do next.

2) A full configuration layer. The largest cost involved in any Content Management project is tailoring the platform to meet the specific business requirements. Typically this meant months of coding / customization, with the associated testing and then upgrade headaches and cost. CARA provides a vast range of configuration items – basically covering everything from how the UI looks for each user through to the business rules e.g. properties screens, folder rules, automated security and so on. In fact, CARA has so much configuration, that Generis is offering a zero customization policy - if customers need a new feature, it will be added as a configurable feature available to everyone. The team from Generis has even created “pre-packaged” configuration start points for various use cases such as Quality Documents, Human Resources, Legal, and a range of Life Sciences cases including eTMF, submissions / eCTD, Correspondence and Commitment Tracking, and Change Control.

Part of the reason CARA is so flexible is that it is a JAVA application built using the Google Web Toolkit (which means it works in any browser). CARA is available also as a mobile solution and in multiple languages including English, French, German, Spanish, Japanese, Chinese, Arabic, Russian, Portuguese and Polish.

Desktop-in-a-browser

When you first see CARA open, it is pretty unusual for a web application – in fact, it looks like you are working on a Windows machine inside your browser. You can have multiple windows open on your screen (so you can efficiently multi-task) and you can do things like drag and drop between windows.

Apart from the usual lists of documents and menus / buttons, there are some other unique things about CARA, which you won’t find in other web UIs. For example, the Widgets Panel shows (not surprisingly) widgets of information about documents that you click on – you can choose from several out of the box widgets, or actually build your own through configuration – including pulling information from third party systems via web services (think JD Edwards, Siebel, databases…). This makes the Widgets incredibly flexible and powerful.

Also – to solve one of the biggest problems in content management (“how do I find my stuff”), CARA has a tool called Dimensions – it’s the ultimate replacement for either fixed-folder navigation or running explicit searches. Basically, choose up to 5 levels of attributes by which you want to browse the repository, and each user has their own virtual folder structure. You can pre-define dimensions for roles or scenarios to make it easier for users to find appropriate groups of documents or filter them by different combinations. This is probably the #1 favorite feature when we talk to users.

In the spirit of Oracle dashboards, CARA also has its own Dashboards where you can access reports as charts or tables, export to Excel, and so on:

All of this is underpinned with the configuration layer which allows you to configure both the user interface (layout, availability of functions per group and so on) as well as the business rules (for example security / folders / audits based on attribute value rules, properties screens, property inheritance / auto-generation). The entire configuration is done through the CARA UI, requiring zero coding – cutting cost and time of implementation dramatically:




 Don't forget to sign up and attend the Free Webinar from Generis and Oracle to learn more about CARA

John Klinke from Oracle and James Kelleher from Generis will be running a demo of CARA for Oracle WebCenter on 19th July 2012 at 11am Eastern Time (USA). This demo will feature the CARA user interface and configuration layer, focusing on the benefits to end users as well as the configuration layer and the associated ROI savings from configuring Oracle WebCenter to meet your requirements rather than coding.

Sign up here for the webinar.

About

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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