The high registration numbers and strong turnout should surprise no one. The ERP end-user community has been waiting for Oracle Fusion Applications since Oracle completed its takeover of PeopleSoft. The availability of Oracle Fusion Applications isn’t simply of interest to existing E-Business Suite, PeopleSoft, and J.D. Edwards customers, it’s also represents a fundamental shift the way enterprise-level applications are deployed, supported, and hosted.
By the same token, it’s no surprise then that our webcast drew many questions. We’re happy to publish Part I of the Q and A Transcript. We say “Part I” because there are still three outstanding questions which we need to answer and, in fact, our webcast presenter is doing that just now while at the Collaborate 12 conference in Las Vegas.
Q&A Session from Reduce Your Confusion About Oracle Fusion
Q: Will the presentation slides be posted somewhere we can download from after the presentation?
Q: I heard that IT Convergence is a beta tester of Oracle R12.2. How can that be aligned with Fusion?
A: As mentioned during the webcast, it is extremely important to say that Oracle Fusion Applications is not a replacement of your current Oracle ERP system.
And that means of course that IT Convergence will not be replacing our Oracle R12 E-Business Suite implementation with Fusion Apps using a big bang approach.
IT Convergence’s strategy is to continue with E-Business Suite using the latest versions and slowly implement Oracle Fusion Applications module by module adding value to our business taking advantage of the new features and functions that are changing the way our employees see an ERP.
Oracle’s own recommended strategy is to continue on your current path, which means following the path of E-Business Suite roadmap which today goes up to Release 12.1.3 and it is announced Release 12.2 with some new integration points with Oracle Fusion for late 2012 and it is what IT Convergence based on the experience as an end user will execute and suggest to our customers.
Q: Do you know when Oracle R12.2 will be available?
A: IT Convergence has been working very close with Oracle Development on this new release in their beta customer program. The new Release 12.2 is the Online Patching upgrade. It provides a huge improvement on the technology stack. It also gives us (the Oracle E-Business Suite customers) the ability to schedule downtime windows, as they are so brief (and predictable) without interrupting business. Oracle is very strict with information about when the products will become generally available and this is not an exception, but it is clear that this will be what Oracle calls a “quality driven release” instead of a “date driven release” because of the impact of the changes on the tech stack of the Oracle E-Business Suite.
Q: What is OTBI?
A: Before defining OTBI (Oracle Transactional Business Intelligence), I’d like to describe the Fusion Application’s reporting strategy.
Oracle Fusion Applications delivers world-class reporting tools to meet reporting needs for timely, secure, and accurate access to real-time information. First, Oracle Fusion Apps are a state-of-the-art financial reporting platform. Single step posting from transactions to analytic cubes ensure consistent, timely and accurate information for both management and external reporting – complete with drill down to transactions. Financial balances are pre-aggregated at every possible summarization point making reporting, ad hoc queries, and drill downs lightning fast.
Financial Reporting, allows you to produce professional quality, boardroom ready financial statements with live drilldowns.
The new Smart View provides the ability to view and analyze financial reports within a spreadsheet environment. This is where the Finance department feels most comfortable, right? BI Publisher does not need any introduction since it has been in the market for several years.
Oracle BI Applications (OBIA) is a prepackaged data warehouse enabling historical analysis and cross-domain insight.
|Professional quality, boardroom ready financial statements with live drilldowns to source transactions Exception-based account monitoring with multidimensional analysis||Financial Reporting Center|
|Spreadsheet-based financial reporting and ad hoc queries with multidimensional analysis, pivoting, and drill down||Smart View|
|High volume operational reporting||BI Publisher|
|Easy-to-use ad hoc queries of transactions with live drill downs to transactions||Oracle Transactional Business Intelligence (OTBI)|
|KPIs, metrics, and highly summarized queries from a data warehouse||OBIA|
|Business Solution||Current State Analysis||Unlimited Historical Analysis|
|Business Process Reporting||Tactical Reporting||Strategic reporting|
|Target Users||Fusion Application operational user||Manager and super users|
|Data Sources||Homogeneous – Fusion Apps Database||Heterogeneous, multiple business areas and applications|
|Data Preparation||Granular Views, no data movement||Data warehouse model with transactional detail, persisted data, bulk and incremental data, ETL (Extract Transform Load)|
|Data Availability||Real Time||Updated periodically via ETL|
|Cross Functional Analysis||Single Semantic model with conformed dimensions across both worlds||Single Semantic model with conformed dimensions across both worlds|
Q: Fusion is a new product, how do we know that it’s stable and reliable?
A: Fusion is a new product that has been built and tested for more than 5 years. Oracle made it Generally Available (GA) in October 2011 and since then many companies has been implementing the solution around throughout world. It has been built on the best practices and leveraging the Fusion Middleware architecture (which also has many years in the market) so in our opinion, from a technical perspective the product is very reliable. Regarding the application on the tests that were performed it is stable but every customer has to model their operations to understand how the product can work with their environment and meet their business needs.
Q: Do the integrations require a separate license?
A: Oracle Fusion Applications relie on integrations with different sources (such as E-Business Suite) on the technical stack. This technology stack includes the products that will be acting as integration points and provide the timing required to meet your business requirements.
These components are: Oracle Golden Gate and Oracle SOA Suite. You will need to purchase these products in order to have the out of the box integrations provided by Fusion Applications.
Q: When will Fusion be available for Federal Financials?
A: Oracle has not officially provided an answer on Fusion Applications V2 which will be presenting several new features.
Q: Are Oracle, Peoplesoft & JDE are integrated into 1 product in Fusion?
A: Oracle Fusion Applications is a brand new product. It has some of the best features of each of the Oracle ERP systems, but it is not an upgraded version of any of the Oracle Applications.
Q: Are there many customers actually live on Oracle Fusion Applications?
A: There are quite a few clients using in production Fusion Applications (see some examples on this press release from Oracle http://www.oracle.com/us/corporate/press/512670) and it is getting more attraction since it was presented as Generally Available last year. The clients are using Fusion just like Oracle and IT Convergence recommend, implementing some Fusion Apps modules and coexisting with your current ERP system.
Q: What are the hardware requirements for Oracle Fusion Applications?
A: These components must be installed and configured specifically for use with Oracle Fusion Applications:
– Identity and Access Management Database – containing ODS, ODSSM, OVD, OIF, OIM, OAM, SOA, and Audit schema (4 GB memory)
– Identity and Access Management Application Tier – 1 Weblogic Domain containing 4 servers (Admin Sever , OIM Server, OAM Server, SOA Server) and OID Server. (4 GB memory)
– Fusion Applications Transactional Database – containing transactional data and metadata for Fusion Applications and Fusion Middleware (9 GB memory for DEV)
– Fusion Applications Application Tier – containing 9 WebLogic Domain (Common, CRM, Financial, HCM, SCM, Data Hub, FAH, Contracts, Incentive Compensation) containing 39 Application Managed Servers and 28 Middleware Managed Servers.
Oracle Fusion Applications demand a lot of memory, so if you’re either using virtualization or physical hardware we recommend checking each of the product’s specs for further detail on hardware requirements.
Q: We have different ERP systems in our organization like XPD2 which is on mainframe, Oracle 11.5.9 and 188.8.131.52 and another small ERP Profit 21, so how can we use Fusion in this scenario?
A: Besides your different ERP systems, the most important questions, which should be driving the decision, should be:
– Which business process can you improve with Oracle Fusion Applications?
– Which of your current ERP systems can you replace with something from Oracle Fusion Applications that provides better functions and features?
If you’re seriously considering adopting Fusion, you can contact IT Convergence for an assessment on how your company can plan the Fusion strategy. (1-800-675-0032 or reach us through our Contact Us page).
Q: Will development tools like Forms 11, Reports, Workflow etc work in Fusion or is it a total makeover?
A: These tools will no longer be used by Fusion Applications and we strongly recommend that you begin acquiring knowledge on the new tools that Oracle Fusion Application is using such as: Oracle ADF and BI Publisher.
Q: Does Oracle Fusion Applications use a new architecture or is it the same as Oracle 11i or Oracle R12 architecture with changes?
A: Oracle Fusion uses a brand new architecture leveraging the Oracle Fusion Middleware and new technical components such as: Weblogic, Oracle SOA and Oracle Golden Gate.
Q: Hi guys, do you anticipate an Oracle Fusion project to take longer to implement than a standard Oracle EBS upgrade? What would be your estimate for moving to Fusion (E.G. Financials) with co-existence with Oracle EBS?
A: Oracle Fusion Applications is business software solution and like any other ERP system it requires a realistic project plan. Some of the key differentiators with E-Business Suite are the User Experience that has been dramatically improved on Fusion , thusimproving the user adoption. This can speed up some phases but, on the other hand, you have to consider the training of the IT Team on this new product can also be a challenge.
Bottom line we wouldn’t expect longer implementation projects for Fusion Apps and it’s hard to set a estimation without knowing the model of your organization.
To give you and example from our experience, here at ITC we are’ estimating a 6-9 month project for the implementation of Fusion Financials for a single legal entity.
Q: When will full suites of Fusion HCM (Human Capital Management) and Financials be available?
A: They are already available.
Q: Can we upgrade from Oracle 11i or Oracle R12 to Oracle Fusion Applications or it has to be a new installation?
A: Fusion has to be a new install since they are applications that have been built from scratch.
Q: OTBI is free with Fusion?
A: Yes, OTBI is part of the Fusion Application product.
As mentioned above, we still have some questions relating to Oracle GRC, OFA, and PL/SQL that we need to answer and that we’re researching.
Please check back as we’ll have those answers for you shortly.
Keep Yourself Up to Speed on Oracle Fusion
In the mean time, there are a number of ways you can continue to educate yourself about Oracle Fusion Applications. First, you can follow the IT Convergence internal Fusion implementation on a separate blog we have set up solely for the purposes of documenting our experiences. Click here to visit the IT Convergence Oracle Fusion Blog.
You can also download the white paper that is supporting two of the presentations IT Convergence delivered at Collaborate 12. To register and download the white paper “Clouds” on the Horizon: What’s the Best Oracle Fusion Strategy for Those Still on Oracle 11i or Oracle R12?” click here now (you’ll also be able to download other white papers delivered at Collaborate 12).
Finally, we invite you to join us at the “Introduction to Oracle Fusion Applications|” workshop we’re holding as part of the Oracle Applications Workshops. The first installment of this workshop will be held in August 2012 on the campus of Harvard University. Click here for more information or to register for “Introduction to Oracle Fusion Applications.”