This past summer, Oracle announced the feature enhancements included in the latest version of Oracle E-Business Suite, release 12.2.9. There were several notable areas of improvement across each of EBS’ functional domains, but it was particularly exciting to see Oracle continuing to invest in its customers’ desire for a more consumer-driven experience in their use of enterprise applications.
While improvements to the underlying tech and associated functionality are certainly critical, we find that continued investment in UI and UX will help counter a few of the salient (and interrelated) issues inherent in an enterprise environment: user adoption & ‘rogue’ users. If you can find a customer or user-base that says, “I love the user experience of my applications at work – they’re just like how I interact with all of my different applications at home,” let us know! Generally, people find their experience with ERP (and other business applications) to be cumbersome, slow, or archaic (or some combination thereof).
How the Latest Release Compares to Previous Versions
In previous 12.2.x releases, Oracle introduced the Enterprise Command Center – an interface that allows users to drill-down into transactional data without an enterprise-scale reporting platform serving as an intermediary. In what can probably be termed a pilot or beta release, there were 6 Command Centers included in the initial release – which has now been increased to 22, including 72 interactive dashboards. The Command Centers and dashboards cover the Financials, Order Management, Procurement/Projects, Manufacturing, & HCM domains.
If your last exposure to EBS was on 11i or a 12.1.x release, you would be pleasantly surprised by the sleek and modern UI embedded in these applications. Users can now search, filter, and display transactional data like they would on a consumer application. Ultimately, this will ideally reduce the workarounds some users require to access and leverage data.
Inclusion of dynamic features like the Enterprise Command Center are necessary for on-premise products like E-Business Suite to maintain their relevancy for the workforces of the present and future, especially as more companies begin to adopt Cloud solutions. The challenge of supporting large, global businesses with diverse user bases, operations, and business unit configurations cannot be understated. There are very few enterprise-grade systems available that are capable of the volume and complexity associated with that kind of scale, and EBS is one of them. To continue to delight users and move forward, capabilities like the Enterprise Command Center dashboards are fantastic additions to complement an already powerful system.
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