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Observations About Fusion From HUG Attendees

I recently attended the Oracle Human Resources Group (OHUG) meeting in Orlando. As a consulting partner/vendor I had a chance to talk to a large number customers — both Oracle eBusiness and PeopleSoft HCM– about their current plans and their perception of Fusion.

I have to admit, I was surprised by what I perceived to be a general lack of enthusiasm for Fusion.  The conference had a good number of sessions devoted to the Fusion HCM products, but I found out from Oracle that those sessions were not attended as well as expected.  Most attendees were focused on their current environment or getting to a supported release of their product set.  I even met with a gentleman who was literally in a panic that Oracle was going to force Fusion on him and he didn’t want it. He just wanted to keep his PeopleSoft HRMS.

Obviously, the vast majority of customers are not early adopters — especially when cost-conservatism is still the rule of the day and new technology for new technology’s sake is a no-no. Still, I anticipated there would be more enthusiasm about the fact that Fusion was finally a reality and that the Fusion applications could be considered as part of one’s HCM Roadmap.  But most people seemed to be confused as to what the message was about Fusion and in many cases just what Fusion is.

Oracle has been consistent in its messaging to the HCM customers.  But what I perceive is that Oracle is saying blah, blah, blah and the customers are hearing exactly that: blah, blah, blah. Messaging is either not crisp or being articulated properly.  It is fear from the customers that psychologically blocks the message?  Does cost + change equal job anxiety?  Is it the belief they will have to surrender their investment in their current system and step into the Wild West with a new platform ?Is the message too marketing-oriented?

Oracle predicts that by OpenWorld there will be a good number of Oracle HCM Fusion early adopters to showcase the success of Fusion. I personally have every reason to believe them, but it won’t happen unless Oracle can figure out how to get the message across in a simplified fashion that makes people feel more comfortable.

Just some observations from where I sit.  What is your take?

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One Response

  1. Great observations, Anne, I totally agree that PeopleSoft HR customers will never go to Fusion. The enthusiastic embrace of the future of Oracle applications has made the road to fusion more like a convergence than a switch-over. PeopleSoft 9.2 reminds me of Fusion apps and vice versa. There are now lots of different things going on in one screen, providing deep actionable analytic context for users. I think the question never has to be asked, whether customers are going to Fusion because with PeopleSoft 9.2 they are already there for all intents and purposes.
    One exception I see a real strong reason to convert is Fusion GL module, even if the other PeopleSoft Financial/Supply Chain (PS FSCM) modules stay in place. The Fusion Accounting Data Hub completely changes the context by encapsulating the accounting book of record that holds data from, reconciles, and does Essbase and OBIEE reporting off GL and all the source system and subsidiary ledger feeds. Remember when Oracle eBusiness Suite was considered a solid product in the open market against to PeopleSoft for Financials but not HR? Fusion Accounting Hub’s grandfather was the Oracle Financial Accounting Hub, which was already PeopleSoft-worthy as a data hub even before Fusion. And now it’s incorporated a rules engine based on Hyperion’s Rules Management (I think they call it Allocations Wizard now in Fusion Accounting Hub) and Essbase Cubes. Hyperion is the product of choice in the market for EPM GL Consolidations. The big value add is the ability to be less beholden to a single GL Accounting Code Block. Now that the hub is the book of record that encapsulates the GL system, the GL can be seen, reconciled and reported on in multiple contexts. While PeopleSoft GL 9.2 is really great, my understanding is that for now it would only feed into and then, if retained, accept an asynchronous feed from a Fusion Accounting Hub. Even that is already a huge improvement. But instead I can see that customers might be motivated to look into adoption of the Fusion GL module as a natural progression for adopters of the Fusion Accounting Hub.

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