Friday, February 15, 2008

Fusion Middleware - Get Your Feet Wet

2008 is a big year for the Oracle Fusion vision. We should see the first stand-alone Fusion Applications, as well as the first incremental release of an integrated Fusion Applications Suite. Most Oracle Applications customers are waiting on needles and pins to learn more about Fusion Applications. And it's the waiting that's the problem...

The move to Fusion Applications includes a transition to new applications technology and a new architecture. The basis for both is Fusion Middleware, which is available now. In fact, if you're running on the latest releases of the E-Business Suite or PeopleSoft, you're already running on Fusion Middleware! However, most customers have yet to leverage Fusion Middleware other than implementing the latest Oracle Application releases.

Getting your feet wet with Fusion Middleware provides your organization with two potential benefits: 1) doing so moves your organization towards a wide array of potential value available from the Fusion Middleware tech stack; 2) if your organization is considering a move to Fusion Applications, using Fusion Middleware today will help "set the table" in terms of mastering the necessary technology. It's the first item that leads me to believe that simply waiting is not a good strategy - each day we wait is a day when we could be using Fusion Middleware to provide more value to our respective organizations.

What type of value am I talking about? In general terms, Fusion Middleware's capabilities with business process analysis, process-based integration, and business intelligence look very compelling. However, value is a very specific thing to each organization. What's priceless to me may be worthless for you. You'll need to evaluate the capabilitis of Fusion Middleware to determine what will help your organization do things "better, faster, cheaper". Do you care about integrating up and down your supply chain, having a single process that facilitates coordination between your suppliers, your organization, and your cusomters? Would you be interested in reducing operating costs by automating your employee on-boarding process? How about providing the latest information on critical metrics to your "C-level" executives in real-time? Maybe you'd like to reduce the cost of providing information technology services by increasing reuse of in-house developed solutions? Are you facing challenges with building business processes across organization or technology "stovepipes" within your enterprise? As I write this article, all these issues and others have been successfully met by customers who, rather than waiting, have extended their Oracle Applications through the use of Fusion Middleware.

Waiting means you're missing out on value you could add right now. So, don't wait...dip your toes in...get your feet wet now...The water is fine. Pick a challenge for your organization, match it up with a component of Fusion Middleware, and get going with it. It sure beats waiting.

Next post, we'll talk about how to get started.

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