The COVID-19 crisis has forced businesses to rapidly change how they live and work. Leading organizations are reorienting their customer-experience efforts to help them meet their business needs. Technology major Oracle is one such example that has been doing its best to manage through this pandemic—from ensuring an effective crisis response to managing supply-chain disruptions, and helping customers in their cloud and digital transformation journey.
In a recent interaction with CXOToday, Juergen Lindner, Oracle’s senior vice-president of marketing for SaaS, focusing on enterprise resource planning (ERP), enterprise performance management (EPM) and supply chain management (SCM), informs how Oracle has acted like a business partner, not like a technology partner to its customers, through the crisis shedding lights on some of the specific steps it has taken to help customers.
A trusted business partner in crisis
“The pandemic has been an educational experience for us,” says Lindner, as he mentions that the pandemic forced businesses to have those conversations around digital transformation that they have been ignoring for some time.
For example, Lindner believes, some of the backend functions like finance and supply chain were brought at the forefront of all the transformation. Some sectors flourished, while others faced existential crisis. The business leaders were trying to be ready themselves and helping their teams to prepare to face any contingency because of the pandemic.
“We understood that the uniqueness and the sensitivity of the situation and we stayed away from the classic sales conversations. We played the role of a trusted advisor for our customers. We saw a lot more go-lives than we had expected,” says he.
Lindner explains some of the specific steps the company did to help its customers. “For the first time,” he says, “we offered some of our products free to our customers. We were very flexible in our pricing to suit the delicate condition of our customers.”
“We extended some pieces of functionalities to our customers to ride through the crisis. We announced elevations to our SaaS offerings. We are helping our customers to shift their business models. We are offering a very seamless orchestration between the configuration of the service and customer experiences and between revenue streams and financial systems and supply chains,” he adds.
According to Lindner, all these things have made possible by common data model. That is what customers have come to realize that the data needs to flow seamlessly between the applications within one suite, with embedded analytics.
“This allows having predictive features part of the platform and gives the tremendous advantage to redo scenario model to all those things, that our customers need to survive right now and for the next chapter of growth,” he informs.
Cloud ERP to leapfrog
The new normal caused the cloud to leapfrog in every industry and Oracle took complete advantage of this opportunity. Needless to say, the tech major is positioning itself to take more market share in cloud ERP segment. As Lindner observes, “In our pursuit you to deliver latest technology to our customers, we keep on unlocking new functionalities, for our stable core sectors and to gain access to newer industries.”
He sees tremendous growth in the higher education sector. Besides, the company is breaking ground in the oil and gas industry through joint venture accounting.
“We have proven success with 7300 Cloud ERP customers and 5000 of these are go-lives. We are the only technology provider in the market right now with a complete suite of services with end to end solutions for every line of business. Our ability to extend every innovation from our infrastructure side to SaaS customers gives us huge opportunities,” he says.
India success stories
Sharing some of the latest customer success stories from India during the Covid-19 crisis, Lindner says, “Despite the pandemic, the conversations about the digitalization did not cease with some of our clients.”
Taking a dig at SAP, he gives the example of Omega Healthcare, a healthcare outsourcing provider that was using its legacy HCM systems from the provider and they looked at it critically during the pandemic. They decided to partner up with us as we could offer them one cloud platform. This is where we stand up in the competition with SAP.
He adds, “When customers compare our offerings with competition, they feel that we can be a better choice in the long run as we offer them this innovation platform.”
Oracle also implemented cloud ERP for Cactus Communications, a research firm for medical services in recent weeks.
“We implemented ERP for them in less than 10 weeks, which shows that a cloud ERP journey has nothing in common with on- prem ERP. It can be very tactical for quick business wins and this is one of those examples that in just first 10 weeks we already had business success,” informs Lindner, adding that the customer also saved 20% of their time that they spent on procurement.
The global cloud ERP market size is expected to grow from USD 45.3 billion in 2020 to USD 101.1 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 17.4% during the forecast period, according to recent reports. The major factors driving the growth of the cloud ERP industry include growing demand among enterprises to improve operational efficiency and streamline business processes, the impact of COVID-19 pandemic and increasing adoption of cloud-based solutions. Last year Oracle led the pack with over 10% market share riding on a 35% jump in Cloud ERP license, maintenance and subscription revenues, followed by Intuit, RealPage and SAP.