Having practical experience in supply chain, PeopleSoft ERP (SCM) and Business Intelligence (BI), I am naturally drawn to anything that combines the attributes of all three. Oracle BI applications for procurement and spend can do just that. We have spoken previously about how PeopleSoft query tools are BI tools and not a full-on BI enterprise product. That said, there is a completely integrated solution offered by Oracle that is just as user friendly.
As we all know, there are literally thousands of tables in PeopleSoft and tens of thousands of fields. To boot, since PeopleSoft is a transaction-based system, there are many different statuses of these transactions. Imagine the work required to sort through all of those tables and fields AND choose the right status/disposition in order to develop effective business intelligence. Remember, we are not talking about simple reports, but true business intelligence that provides insight into your business operations and is aligned with executive-facing strategic objectives.
With Oracle BI apps, Oracle has pre-packaged all of that work of mapping tables, fields and statuses. It’s already done. Additionally, they’ve built the required Oracle data warehouse structure to support BI and all of the required ETL scripts to extract, transform and load the data. This means that a tremendous amount of the work has been accomplished even before a single report or dashboard has been created. On top of all of that, there are hundreds of reports, metrics and dashboards. In fact, in the Procurement and Spend Analytics alone there are 161 metrics, 103 reports, 14 dashboard pages and two dashboards.
If you were to perform the investigation of thousands of tables and fields, choose the correct status, design and develop an appropriate the data warehouse structure, design and develop ETL scripts, establish the 161 metrics, and design/develop the 103 reports, I think you’d quickly realize how much time and effort it really takes to accomplish this. It’s a massive chunk of work, and to have that pre-packaged with Oracle BI apps is a godsend. Further, the maintenance and task of keeping the products in sync is taken care of through maintenance releases. This can be a huge advantage in and of itself, as every time a patch is applied it has the potential to impact the downstream BI.
Finally, another huge advantage I see is that the Oracle BI apps help achieve one of the most strategic goals of business intelligence: embedding BI into the business process. With Oracle BI apps, the integration is very tight, almost seamless, as users move from PeopleSoft apps to BI. They may not even realize they are using different applications, and as a result BI becomes part of their daily routine and adds value to the core organization.
There are many other benefits to these solutions and I have only highlighted a few. In my next post, we’ll discuss different considerations when implementing Oracle BI apps. In the meantime, if you have any questions or comments about this — or are considering Oracle BI yourself — please email me and I’ll help you sort out your options. I’d love to hear from you.
Previously by Larry Zagata:
- The Value of (Real) Integration Between Business Intelligence and MS Office
- Business Intelligence Requirements Gathering: Digging Deeper
- Why Excel Is Not an Enterprise BI Solution
- Art Meets Science: Business Intelligence Requirements Gathering
- Living Together: Oracle BI and PeopleSoft
- Back to basics: Why choose an enterprise Business Intelligence tool, anyway?
- Using BI to Survive the Recession, Part I
- Using BI to Survive the Recession, Part II
- Business Intelligence in the real world: Aligning metrics (Part I)
- Business Intelligence in the real world: Aligning metrics (Part II)
Related whitepapers (PDF):
- MiPro Consulting: Oracle BI Services
- MiPro Consulting: SAP Business Objects Services
- MiPro Consulting: Resources