In the right hands, Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) is a powerful tool that’s prepared to unleash an entire suite of benefits for your organization — from slashing costs to improving key performance indicators. Unfortunately, for many companies, trying to leverage this unparalleled power is a bit like taking a drink from a fire hose.
Deploying and using an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution is a highly complex and fraught undertaking. According to a 2016 survey, 43 percent of companies had a neutral or negative opinion of their ERP projects. In order to avoid the same fate for your company, you should have a plan for each of the five most critical challenges of Oracle EBS discussed below.
1. Training Users
In many cases, problems with Oracle EBS can be traced back to employees’ insufficient training with a certain application or functionality. Many users are slow to adopt EBS because they’re conditioned to doing things in a different way, or because they don’t realize how to best leverage the features available to them. You need to implement a thorough training process for EBS that will get everyone involved up to speed, especially if you’re migrating to EBS instead of upgrading.
2. Selecting Metrics and KPIs
Without knowing your past performance, it’s hard to understand future results. In order to assess the success of your Oracle EBS deployment, you need to carefully select the right metrics well in advance so that you can establish a baseline for the software’s capabilities. These may include KPIs such as the time or cost involved in handling a particular operation. Choosing the right metrics will not only make it easier to understand how you’re doing, but also help make your case for the value of the project to key stakeholders.
3. Testing the Environment
Like any complex software deployment, Oracle EBS must be tested on a regular basis in order to ensure its performance remains at an acceptable level. A comprehensive testing plan should push EBS to its limits using techniques such as stress testing, but also include day-to-day use cases and regular activities such as financial reporting.
4. Installing Updates and Patches
Oracle is constantly releasing an array of security patches and upgrades for EBS. Installing these updates can result in downtime for the system, which makes many organizations reluctant to perform them. However, updating EBS on a regular basis is important. The longer you wait to do so, the more work you’ll have to do to resolve issues, and the more effort you’ll have to put in when you eventually upgrade.
5. Cleaning Data
Out-of-date and disorganized information can easily build up in an Oracle EBS environment, introducing lag, inaccuracies, and inefficiencies. Your organization should have a strategy for master data management to avoid these difficulties. Transient data and obsolete transactional data should be repeatedly purged from your EBS platform so that you can continue to turn the most relevant data into useful business insights.
Knowing how to handle the five challenges above is the key differentiator for many companies between the success and failure of an Oracle EBS deployment. If you’ve recognized some of your own difficulties while reading this article, you may benefit from a discussion with Oracle experts who can help guide you on your journey.
Learn more about how to overcome the challenges of EBS through optimization and our performance tuning methodology in our white paper: Taming the Beast: Optimizing Oracle EBS for Radical Efficiency.
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