Why Life is Easier in Oracle Cloud Than PeopleSoft
With over 400 completed Oracle Cloud projects and more than 180 Oracle Cloud customers, Alithya knows a thing or two about helping our customers move to the cloud. For PeopleSoft users, this is especially important if your support agreements with Oracle are ending soon or have already ended. In this blog post, we will share specific lessons learned and areas of interest for current PeopleSoft users considering a change – and that change may not be as hard, timely, or costly as you may think.
Accounts Payable (AP)
In Oracle Cloud, Supplier Registration and “out of the box” Approval Workflows are gamechangers for companies with multiple locations/entities that want to centralize AP. With the ability for Suppliers to enter their own information along with Supplier Bank Account Controls and Supplier Audit Reports, it is much easier to keep the Supplier Master pristine and accurate. Workflows for Account Coding, Invoice Approvals, and Payment Approvals help eliminate paper processes, control cash flow, and ensure correct expense classification – ultimately fostering the centralized AP approach as well.
Cash Management (CM)
The creation and depth of Reconciliation rules is more flexible and robust than in PeopleSoft, and handling Sweeps/Zero Balancing between accounts is more automated and much cleaner in Oracle Cloud.
Fixed Assets (FA)
Without a doubt, the built-in interfaces in Oracle Cloud, including accounts payable to fixed assets, make reconciliations easier and streamline asset management. The process is very clunky in PeopleSoft, involving four processes which makes troubleshooting a nightmare. In Oracle Cloud, it is one process.
Oracle Cloud offers greatly improved reports options, including the following attributes:
- More robust financial reporting with Financial Reporting Studio compared to the PeopleSoft nVision tool.
- Built on Essbase with Cubes/SmartView, Oracle Cloud’s ability to ‘slice and dice’ data far outweighs reporting options in PeopleSoft.
- Overall, it is much quicker to find the information you need across both Ledger and Transactional data, as opposed to running many different reports and stitching them together in Excel.
- Oracle Fusion Transactional Business Intelligence (OTBI) is a more sophisticated report-building engine and includes pre-built data models. Dashboards, Infotiles/Infolets, and improved search screens are also a huge plus and have been welcomed by our Cloud customers. With all these reporting improvements, compared to PeopleSoft, Oracle Cloud helps greatly reduce the dependence on highly technical resources for report development.
- Ability to create triggers, alerts, and bursting options without complex code.
Moving to Oracle Cloud eliminates the need for updates and patches from the PeopleSoft Update Manager (PUM) – which now requires a lot of work and effort to track updates and manually apply them. The PUM Images are patch packages for updates. While not required, you do need at least one per year, and each one is like a miniature upgrade project. Even if you run PeopleSoft environment, PUM work is needed and there are potential costs that are beyond any testing efforts in Cloud.
Also, per Oracle, there will not be a 9.3 Release, but instead incremental quarterly releases on top of 9.2 via PeopleTools. With lots of customizations and the need for extensive regression testing, it is easy for PeopleSoft users to fall behind quickly on quarterly patches, creating the need for LOTS of planning, manpower, and money to maintain them. With this approach, there is a greater risk of things breaking and not having the time to fully test each process after each patch.
In Oracle Cloud, instead of “big” releases, there are quarterly ones that Oracle completely handles from an infrastructure perspective. Four releases per year provide a good balance to introduce new functionality that can move the needle forward yet allow you to manage and keep up with the updates without feeling overwhelmed. Also, when you move to the Oracle Cloud, you are automatically placed on a pre-defined schedule to receive the updates, so you are always on the latest release. This new approach reduces the need to customize which means less need for planning and full regression testing.
As a by-product of quarterly upgrades, you can standardize old processes and functionality to leading practices which makes training your resources simpler with content more readily available/accessible.
Bank and other integrations are more streamlined and partially pre-built (web services, APIs, FTP/SSH Key connections) in Oracle Cloud, thereby reducing technical/developer resources. Many integrations in PeopleSoft require an intermediary server that you must host and maintain. Moving to Oracle Cloud eliminates the need for such servers in many integration scenarios.
Other Improvements in Oracle Cloud include:
- Ability to set up reminders, escalations, and delegations on various workflows
- The ability to attach files in most screens in Oracle Cloud while not having to worry about database constraints in on-premises PeopleSoft instances (this eliminates the two-to-three-year storage runway concern that often plagues IT departments).
- Dedicated community forums on Oracle’s Customer Connect where Oracle Cloud’s Product Team members interact directly with customers, review user ideas/enhancement requests, and ultimately approve them for the official roadmap.
If you are considering alternative options for your PeopleSoft environments, you can see from this short list alone that there are many reasons to move to the Oracle Cloud platform. If you’d like further guidance on how to get started, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For comments, questions, or suggestions for future topics, please reach out to us at email@example.com. Visit our blog regularly for new posts about Cloud updates and other Oracle Cloud Services such as Planning and Budgeting, Financial Consolidation, Account Reconciliation, and Enterprise Data Management. Follow Alithya on social media for the latest information about EPM, ERP, and Analytics solutions to meet your business needs.