Jim Brull

In my last article in this series, I cleared up a few misconceptions about Oracle applications in the cloud versus on-premises, and I recommend a read through of that article if you haven’t yet seen it. In this follow-up piece, I’ll discuss a reasonable approach CIOs can use to plan their move to the cloud, including a few important questions and caveats to watch for

Got specific questions about Oracle applications in the cloud or on-premises? Contact the experts at Centroid for help

Why It’s a Bad Idea to Put Off Your Cloud Decision

At the outset, let me clarify that I’m not trying to sell you on the cloud. These modern solutions are a great fit for some businesses looking to reduce costs and increase agility… but the cloud is still a developing technology. At this stage of the game, your business may or may not find a compelling value proposition for switching to the cloud. 

However, I do strongly recommend that you start thinking about the cloud now. This is because, as you and I both know, the cloud is the future. It may take you a decade to fully migrate your business to this next stage, but, in the meantime, you will want to plan all your upcoming purchases, investments, and support choices by comparing your costs and overall value with similar cloud options.

As you compare cloud to on-premises options, ask yourself these questions: 

  1. Are Oracle Cloud applications a viable replacement for my current on-premises Oracle applications? 

Though Oracle has focused on cloud development for the past 10 years, they haven’t focused on all their cloud applications for the same amount of time. In terms of maturity, the HCM Cloud product leads the pack for companies considering a global HR management solution, and Oracle ERP Cloud is a strong product for companies looking for core financials. Oracle SCM Cloud, though a strong product, is less mature currently and may not currently meet the needs of process manufacturers with complex needs. 

Another factor to remember, and one that I mentioned in the previous article in this series, is that Oracle Cloud applications don’t always provide like-for-like replacements of their on-premises counterparts. For example, Oracle ERP Cloud does not contain built-in manufacturing or logistics functionality; those capabilities are found in Oracle SCM Cloud. 

To determine what cloud-based Oracle applications would be the best fit for your organization, you’ll want to compare the specific features your company uses in your current solutions, instead of comparing across-the-board feature sets. 

  1. Do Oracle Cloud replacements offer benefits I’m not currently experiencing? 

Though Oracle’s cloud applications don’t always match up feature-to-feature with their on-premises versions, the cloud-based options often have additional functionality that are of high value to business leaders. This is because Oracle invests billions of dollars into cloud R&D each year and continues to focus on building up their cloud portfolio. 

Aside from the typical benefits that the cloud offers (lower TCO, greater agility, access to mobility, latest updates, etc.), cloud-based Oracle applications offer unique value to businesses and users such as new patching functionality that reduces downtime, more user-friendly UIs and search capabilities, embedded analytics, IoT integrations, revenue management tools, and more. These deployments would also be the first to have access to machine learning and AI tools as they are further developed and refined. 

In addition, because cloud apps are on a modern, cloud-based architecture, Oracle has the freedom to add more features and functions to these solutions on a regular basis, which means you may have more power to innovate if you choose to use the cloud versions of your current Oracle applications. 

Your best bet as a CIO is to compare the value you get from paying for ongoing maintenance for your on-premises Oracle suites, and then comparing that with the benefits and value you would receive if you were to purchase a functionally similar cloud application. 

Recommended Approach: Postmodern ERP Implementation

Luckily, it’s not necessary for you to migrate your entire business to the cloud all at once. Instead, you may want to consider a “postmodern ERP” approach, in which you mix and match separate cloud deployment strategies (IaaS, PaaS) with different cloud-based Oracle applications (SaaS) to ensure you’re optimizing your costs and procedures while maintaining high levels of business flexibility. 

In practice, this could mean that you start by using a cloud-based HCM(human capital management) solution to provide a single, global repository for HR data, along with a cloud-based business continuity solution that protects your business from cyber threats. You could easily pair these solutions with your on-premises, highly customized ERP, and in the process, you may stand to achieve significant gains in both productivity and overall ROI, due to your cloud protections and enhancements.

You would then be able to add cloud-based Oracle applications as new functionality becomes available, which would then further increase your productivity gains and cost savings. 

Consult the Cloud Experts for Help with Your Oracle Applications

Remember, whether or not you decide to move any applications to the cloud now, your business will surely benefit from a clear, decisive cloud strategy. If you’d like help figuring out which cloud solutions may be right for you now or in the future, trust the in-depth expertise from the consultants and techs at Centroid. 

For more than 20 years, we’ve helped businesses across the world solve their challenges by leveraging the full stack of Oracle solutions. And when it comes to cloud knowledge, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more experienced team than ours. We’ve been fortunate enough to lead the way for the Oracle Cloud and Oracle Cloud applications by driving some of today’s largest cloud deployments around the globe. 

In addition, we’re also one of the few Oracle implementation partners that can help you at every stage of your cloud journey, all the way from assessment through design, implementation, and ongoing hosting, support, and security. 

 

Contact Centroid’s cloud experts to learn more about your current and future options with the cloud.