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OpenWorld and UKOUG Apps 15 Sessions July 10, 2015

Posted by Duncan in OOW, Oracle, TW, UKOUG.
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I’m delighted that the sessions that I’ve submitted to both Oracle OpenWorld and UKOUG’s APPS15 conference have all been accepted.

The sessions are as follows:

OpenWorld:

PeopleSoft Selective Adoption Best Practices from the Front Line (joint with Mark Thomas of Hays)
PeopleSoft Selective Adoption is genuinely transformative, but to make the best use of it you need a plan. Come to hear from the one of the earliest adopters of this new model on defining how it can work best for you, not just the implementation but the ongoing effective use of PeopleSoft Images using PeopleSoft Update Manager (PUM), the frequency of patch application and the business benefits achieved.

UKOUG APPS15:

Taleo for PeopleSoft People
We’ll show you the Taleo products that work well with PeopleSoft and explain the circumstances in which they might be a good choice for you. We’ll also show the products working together and explain how you can deploy it without breaking the bank.

Running PeopleSoft as a Service
We’ve all heard of the ‘Software as a Service’ (SaaS) vendors. You don’t need to abandon the many benefits of PeopleSoft to gain the agility, security and efficiencies of consuming PeopleSoft as a Service however. We’ll show the key tenets of ‘as a Service’ delivery and how functionality like Selective Adoption enables you to attain them with PeopleSoft.

You can find out more about OpenWorld here and Apps15 here.

Exclusive: The Future of PeopleSoft with Marc Weintraub June 1, 2015

Posted by Duncan in Oracle, Strategy, TW.
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Marc Weintraub (Senior Director of Product Strategy for PeopleSoft) appears in this exclusive Cedar Consulting video and discusses the Future of PeopleSoft with Cedar’s star HR Optimisation guru, Jo Randles.

They cover items such as the size of the PeopleSoft team, competing with cloud-only solutions, avoiding the ‘upgrade for compliance’ trap, self-funding quick wins, co-existence options and putting PeopleSoft in the Cloud.

If you’re curious about the direction that PeopleSoft is taking, or interested in the options available to you now, this is a must watch.

Oracle Ace Award February 23, 2010

Posted by Duncan in Oracle.
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I’ve started off this morning feeling ACE!  The reason for this great start to the day is that I’ve recently discovered that I’ve been named an Oracle ACE!  I am very excited and honored to be added to the Oracle ACE community and I’m looking forward to continuing to contribute in the years ahead.

Scaning through the list there are only 258 ACEs worldwide across all specialisms (this includes ACEs for Database Management, Java, Linux etc as well as Applications).  The list of all the ACEs and their profiles can be found here.

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Oracle buys Sun! April 20, 2009

Posted by Duncan in Oracle.
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Oracle buys Sun Microsystems!

Skills shortage? September 22, 2008

Posted by Duncan in Oracle, PeopleSoft.
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Frank Scavo has a post covering an article from CIO magazine discussing the Oracle and SAP skills shortage.

He muses over a comment on the article concerning whether the skills shortage is independant of experience, or whether it’s only the more experienced end of the spectrum that has a shortage.

My first reaction is to agree with this.  From the consultants I know here in the UK there are those that seem to skip from project to project, only having gaps in between where it’s by their own volition.  Pondering this further though, are these the best consultants or just those that are better organised or with better networks?

It’s difficult to tell the difference, because the most experienced consultants are likely to have a wider network of contacts, and will have changed projects many times so will be well versed in the traps novices may fall foul of.

So which is it?  I’d like to think it was the former.  A talented and experienced consultant will always get work.  However I fear it’s the latter as I’ve come across a few that have succeeded by being barely adequate developers but expert schmoozers.

And is the comment on the article correct?  Is there a surplus of inexperienced consultants around, but a dearth of their experienced colleagues?

What are your experiences?

A couple of pieces of Fusion news September 4, 2008

Posted by Duncan in Fusion, Oracle.
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I’ve decided to keep this blog for PeopleSoft related items and start a second (surprisingly titled Fusion Tipster) for Fusion related or more forward looking items.  I imagine I’ll still post more frequently on this blog, at least until Fusion is released.

There are two pieces of content that I’ve come across in the last few days:

Firstly, there’s a mention for Floyd Teter who has seen Fusion Apps in the flesh.

Secondly, it seems that Oracle’s “Mr Fusion” has left the company.

Creating an entirely read-only user in PeopleSoft August 28, 2008

Posted by Duncan in Oracle, PeopleSoft, PeopleTools, Security, SQL.
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On big projects it is quite likely that large numbers of developers have access to a many environments. Occasionally they can have access to environment which is quite important, for instance one that the customer is using for training or testing.

To reduce the likelihood of developers accidentally deleting some data that they shouldn’t it would be quite normal to remove their access to the environment altogether. However if they need access for troubleshooting purposes then (at least on projects I’ve seen) it’s quite normal for developers to be told “OK, you can have access, but be careful not to do anything destructive”. Occasionally – as with everything – things can go wrong. Either someone forgets which environment they’re in, or does something with unintended consequences. An alternative to the “just be careful” approach would be to create an entirely read-only user profile (i.e. one that has display only privileges to every component system-wide).

A read-only user profile is shown in screenshot below, where no fields are editable and the save button is inactivated:

Also, on Run Control pages the ‘Run’ button is inactive. It’s going to be pretty difficult to alter data in this environment.

Here’s how to do it quickly and easily …

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Substringing and Oracle SQL – Basic Trick August 18, 2008

Posted by Duncan in Oracle, SQL.
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This may well be something that you already know, but it was totally new to me.  It was one of those magic moments where you stumble across something so elementary you wonder:

a) how you haven’t found out about it before

b) how much time it’ll save in the future

This is related to taking only a portion of a string using Oracle SQL, and in particular the right hand side of a string.  In other programming languages I’ve been spoilt with the RIGHT(x,num_chars) command, which we don’t have in Oracle.

In the past I’ve made do using something like:

SUBSTR(<character_field>,length(<character_field>)-4,4)

if I wanted to take the 4 right-most characters from a string.  This gets cumbersome pretty quickly when you have multiple substrings etc.

Today – to my delight – I discovered that you can include negative numbers and Oracle will count back from the right hand side.  So this will take the 4 right-most characters from a string:

SUBSTR(<character_field>,-4)

Oracle’s Fusion Progress and secrecy August 4, 2008

Posted by Duncan in Fusion, Oracle, PeopleSoft.
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There’s a good summary post on Oracle and how they’re far more secretive about their products than PeopleSoft ever used to be.  The post deals with Fusion, but I think that the same point applies to many products, including PeopleSoft applications and Tools releases.  Even tools patches have very vague release dates.

When I posted a year or so ago that I’d heard Jesper Andersen say that the Fusion Applications suite wouldn’t GA until 2009 there was a fair bit of feedback (to put it politely – I even had to edit one comment for profanity), but now it seems more likely that Jesper was correct.

How much we read into this Gartner report is up to our own faith in Oracle, but statements like

‘Oracle plans to only sell Fusion to new customers and that “migrating the installed base to Fusion is no longer a near-term goal”.’

and

‘the 2008 Fusion applications will not include any core ERP products’

don’t fill me with confidence that we’ll see clients implementing Fusion any time soon.

It’s great news though for anyone hoping that the PeopleSoft product line remains around for a long time.

Intriguing Oracle WebCast July 1, 2008

Posted by Duncan in Fusion, Oracle, PeopleSoft, Strategy.
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Oracle have made available a WebCast outlining their future direction for MiddleWare strategy, and announcing what’s in store for the BEA product line.

I must admit that I haven’t listened to the WebCast myself (to be honest I didn’t think there’d be much there that affects PeopleSoft in the short term) but after reading summary posts on a couple of other blogs it seems I was wrong.

The most surprising announcement for me was that going forward

“BEA WebLogic Server is now Oracle’s strategic JEE container and will be integrated into Fusion Middleware stack immediately; OC4J dev to continue though”

This was a bit of a shock as I expected Oracle App Server to be slowly pushed as the Web Server of choice. It’s a change of tack too as in many ‘prepare now to get a headstart for Fusion’ presentations I’ve got the impression that clients should be implementing what they perceive to be Fusion middleware components now, and I’d have had Oracle App Server down as one of those applications.

Antony Reynolds also says:

“But the surprising bit was the emphasis that Thomas Kurian made on Tuxedo. It seems as though the Tuxedo guys are being rehabilitated after years in the wilderness at BEA since the WebLogic acquisition. I was amazed at the increase in connectivity and functionality that has occurred in Tux since I last came into contact with it some ten years ago.”

I’ve tried to view the webcast to find out exactly what’s behind this but can’t seem to view it. I’ll post more if I can get it working …

EDIT: Mulling this over further, I think the decision to use WebLogic over Oracle’s own product is good news for the other acquisitions. If Oracle is willing to use a product that it deigns is superior instead of just using its own product ‘because it’s Oracle’ then that bodes well for any areas of functionality within PeopleSoft, Siebel etc that may be better than corresponding areas of eBusiness suite.