It was a conference totally dedicated towards the Cloud technology. I am using the term “Technology” now, but soon it will be replaced by something much bigger. So, let us have a look at its bigger picture.
On 9th May 2017, Safra Catz, Chief Executive Officer, Oracle, quoted in her keynote session, that Oracle looks at its cloud technology as a Revolution more than just a technology. This was also supported by all the speakers like Ray Wang, the principle analyst and CEO, Constellations as well as Mrutyunjay Mahapatra, CIO, State Bank of India. All together accentuating Cloud as the future and the 4th Industrial revolution.
Though, there were many facts and figures presented by each one of these prominent speakers, we all should always have our own vision on how we see the cloud going ahead. So, let’s categorize our discussion to the following points that the Oracle OWC-India was based upon.
1. Oracle Cloud Services (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS)
2. ‘Adaptation and evolution is a Key to survival’, as a Sales and migration strategy for net new accounts and existing customers.
3. Global Digitization.
4. Security Concerns with respect to Cloud.
Oracle Cloud Services (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS):
I will not be emphasizing on the standard definitions of each of the Cloud services that Oracle provides. In fact, I will try to put this in the simplest way such that anyone from the Non-IT background can understand it as well. Let us begin this with the application level which is the front end for any software. Any enterprise software is based on the following architectural components.
1) The frond end and the logic which defines the look & feel and the process the software is supposed to follow respectively.
2) The development tools and the technology the above components are built with.
3) The Database which is the bank for all your business data with which the front end communicates.
4) The hardware and the servers that the software is hosted upon.
I will now categorize each one within the cloud service structure as shown below.
‘Adaptation and evolution is a Key to survival’ with the Sales and migration strategies for net new accounts and existing customers:
The opening keynote of the conference by Ray Wang, the principle analyst and CEO, Constellations, Oracle, itself began with this. Oracle presented a percentage of the fortune 500 companies who shut down just because they did not adapt to the ever-evolving technology. Oracle explains this as an adaptation towards more smart and robust business processes. It claims the shift to the cloud to be more of a Business process shift than merely a technology shift.
Speaking about the customers that are on Other Oracle/legacy systems, Oracle has aggressively started offering exorbitant discounts for customers to move to the cloud. They have tools to automate the entire shift from on premise to the cloud. And that too free of cost (for the supported versions). They call it “Lift and Shift”.
As long as JD Edwards is concerned, they are showing a similar approach too. But, on the other hand they won’t even commit that the existing latest version Enterprise One 9.2 would be the last one on premise. So, for all those who have been bothering about the future of JDE, it is just a rumor that 9.2 would be the last release. This has been confirmed by the COE, product development, Oracle, Pravin Shodhan.
But, the strategy speaks for itself.
Oracle visualizes this adaptation or shift to the cloud as the most crucial step towards global digitization. The Business processes that are built in the cloud applications are designed to the best interest of a global digital economy. ‘That is the reason, even SBI has shifted to the cloud’ says Mrutyunjay Mahapatra, CIO, State Bank of India, in his key note session. Ray Wang explained the extent of smart applications and automations that the cloud services can stretch to, anchoring it to the Customer Experience. In fact, Customer Experience is something that Oracle deliberately focused at while explaining Digitization. Customer Experience is the new trend of Business success. It keeps on increasing. Customers are transforming too. They are becoming more demanding day by day. Something that was acceptable 5 years back is not acceptable today and this rate is getting faster. So, if the customers are transforming we need to transform our business too. It is the People, Process and Technology together that will bring this Digital Transformation. Digital transformation speaks more about horizontal (amongst the economies) than vertical (within the economies) communication.
Security Concerns with respect to Cloud:
All said and done, but the biggest challenge that the CIOs of most of the companies’ face is with respect to Security. Any customer would at the first place think about securing his data which is the brain of his business. We cannot expect customers to simply go ahead and place their business data to the cloud servers, the security of which is no more in their end to end control. Yes, cloud does have very strong and reliable data security model w.r.t to data backup and recovery. To explain this, I may have to get a bit more technical.
Oracle claims to have hosted most of its SaaS applications on the SPARC. The servers powered by SPARC are considered to be the most secured servers. To understand this in detail, I was shown a presentation which it clear that the level security that the SPARC powered servers provide is really good. They provide an encryption of up to 15 levels, using 15 different encryption algorithms making it impossible to decrypt/crack/hack unethically. I managed to capture a picture of one of the presentations slides meant specially to explain this encryption.
The Million Dollar Question: Should Business Partners Invest on cloud or not?
It would be a good bet to see how many of the CIO’s and CDO’s will oracle and the partners be able to convince to move to the cloud. I think that is something that will drive the future Business strategies of most of the Partner companies. However, what should the growing small economies like startups and individuals within the non-cloud technologies do to sustain this change?
I agree to the fact that cloud will be a good technology for future generations and the shift is bound to happen. Be it Oracle Cloud or some other. But this shift is going to be gradual. It would take at least 5 -7 years down the line for the customers to shift their business to cloud and a further 3-4 years more to get well versed with it. And all of this will be driven by factors such as, ever increasing volumes of data, need of high performance, integrated and optimized systems, digital transformation at all levels via IOT and AI to make the CX even more delightful and, last but not the least a high level of automation that the cloud platform can provide with a single/multiple vendor support.
Considering this, we as individuals or companies should smartly invest on cloud skill-sets with a calculated vision of the possibility of our existing customers transforming their business to the cloud. For start-ups with a very limited investment budget this will be a crucial step. With resources who are fluent in the legacy/non-cloud systems as well as cloud systems, it would be easier for them to bid and win migrations of their existing accounts as well as net new implementations.