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Managing Quarterly Patches for Oracle Cloud Financials

Author: Sarah Martinez | | October 12, 2021


 

So your company has made the investment in Oracle ERP Cloud Financials. You’ve completed the implementation, stood up all the features and functions you want to use, and your users are on the platform. Your work is done right?

 
Well, no. Your work is definitely not done – and this is a good thing. While Oracle Cloud Financials already comes packed with features, businesses are constantly growing and changing…and your software will need to grow and change as well. This is why Oracle has introduced the concept of continuous innovation.

Every quarter, your software receives updates that will mitigate bugs, speed processes, add functions, lower security risks, and incorporate additional integrations that can make a big difference to your business. These updates aren’t table stakes either – we’re talking over a hundred new functionalities across all the applications made available each quarter across the Oracle ERP Cloud suite.

Quarterly patching is very important for your organization for several reasons:
 

  • Patches provide security updates that protect your financial data.
  • Patches introduce new features, some of which could be game changers for your financial processes.
  • Depending on your industry, patches may be required to remain in compliance with legal entities.
  • Patches deliver bug fixes that will make your software operate more smoothly.
Learn more about ourEnterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Services. We provide full support for Oracle ERP Cloud, PeopleSoft, Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS), JDEdwards, and more.
The latest patch for Oracle Cloud Financials is 21D. The naming convention has logic behind it – the number is the year and the letter is the quarter. We’re in the fourth quarter of 2021 so, presto, 21D. 22A, or first quarter 2022 will be next.

Reviewing documentation and preparing for an update can be time-consuming, however, and it can end up taking the backseat to other tasks that seem more critical. Oracle publishes the new features of each release on their website – you can find the details for each update in the Oracle Cloud Readiness documentation.  When you update, all of your data, configurations, and extensions are preserved so you don’t have to worry about losing anything you already had set up. Some new features that come with the update default to “disabled” status, while others are automatically enabled. This means you may need to make some adjustments after the patch is completed based on which features you want to take advantage of.

Sounds pretty good, right?

Patching is not simple, however. There can be unexpected effects on your data and applications if you don’t take some preventative steps to ensure your application will still function as you and your users expect.

Here are a few steps we always take before quarterly updates are applied to a customer’s environments:
 

  • Review the entire Oracle Cloud Readiness update documentation. Get a good understanding of exactly which features are coming and whether they will be automatically enabled or disabled. Make note of which ones you want to turn on and any that you’ll need to turn off. With every patch, always review updates to security roles. Most companies have a high volume of security role customizations and you’ll need to be sure to apply any new features to each of the specific roles you’ve identified. Ensure to review the documentation for all cloud applications and modules that you have implemented.
  • Execute regression testing. Oracle does its own testing before releasing a patch, but their testing doesn’t run against your specific environment and customizations. Regression testing ensures that no aspect of your system, data, workflows, or reports will be adversely affected by the patch, and if it does, it gives you time to fix it before you go live on the new update.
  • Communicate with your users. As you adopt and implement new features, your users will need to know what’s coming and what’s changed. Execute change management strategies so no one gets surprised when they login to the interface.

 
Patching is an essential piece of successful application management for Oracle ERP Cloud. If your organization is struggling to find the resources to keep up with quarterly patches, Datavail can help. Our experienced ERP team supplements finance teams across the country to execute patches that ensure they can take advantage of all the new features and functionality of Oracle ERP Cloud.

We also helped companies take advantage of many additional features of Oracle Cloud Financials such as automated invoicing, purchase order and invoice linking, and audit report preparation. To learn more about the cloud features you may not even know about, download our white paper, “9 Enhancements You Can Make in Oracle ERP Cloud Financials Today.”

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