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Oracle WebCenter is the user engagement platform for social business—connecting people and information.
Updated: 3 hours 23 min ago

Automate Order Receipt & Processing with Oracle WebCenter

Tue, 2015-07-14 07:39

Have paper-based methods brought aspects of your business to a grinding halt?  Are manual processes leading to slip-ups, mix-ups and missteps? Not too long ago, my company was in the same jam. In our pursuit of becoming the leading provider of education products to schools across the country, we ran into an issue: Our ability to process such a growing number of orders had created a bottleneck. We were actually printing orders captured electronically and routing them manually for fulfillment. Inefficient to say the least, this led to orders being lost or delayed. View this video created by Oracle partner Redstone Content Solutions (originally posted on their blog) to see how you can Automate Order Receipt & Processing with Oracle WebCenter. 

WebCenter & BPM: Adaptive Case Management

Thu, 2015-07-09 10:47
By Mitchell Palski, Oracle WebCenter Sales Consultant 
We are happy to have Mitchell Palski joining us on the blog for a Q&A around strategies and best practices for how to deliver Adaptive Case Management with WebCenter and BPM.
Q. So to begin, can you describe for our listeners what case management is? A case is a collection of activities that support a specific business objective. Each case has a lifecycle, which is essentially a process that delivers a service to a use that includes:
  • Activities
  • Rules
  • Information, content, etc.
Case management defines specific interactions that a case may have with a system and with the actual users who are involved in a case’s lifecycle. In a self-service solution, these cases are typically:
  1. Initiated by a customer or citizen
  2. Routed through workflow based on specific business rules or employee intervention
  3. Resolved by evaluating data and content that is captured during the lifecycle

Q. Why is Case Management important? How does Case Management differ from Adaptive Case Management?
Case management is an important concept in today’s technology because it is a primary means of how services are provided to our end users. Some examples might include:

  • Patient services
  • Traffic violation payments
  • Retirement benefit delivery
  • Building, health, or child safety inspections
  • Employee application, promotion, or incident tracking
Each of these examples ties unique combinations of data and documentation together to provide some meaningful service to an end user. Case management software gives organizations the means to standardize how those services are delivered so that they can be completed accurately, quickly and more efficiently.
Adaptive case management is way of modeling flexible and data intensive business processes. Typically, adaptive case management is needed when a case’s lifecycle includes:
  • Complex interactions of people and policies
  • Complex decision making that require subjective judgments to be made
  • Specific dependencies that may need to be overridden based on the combination of fluid circumstances

Adaptive case management allows your organization to employ the use of standard processes and policies, but also allows for flexibility and dynamic decision making when necessary.

Q. How do Oracle WebCenter and Oracle Business Process Management help to deliver Adaptive Case Management? The Oracle Business Process Management Suite includes:
  • Business user-friendly modeling and optimization tools
  • Tools for system integration
  • Business activity monitoring dashboards
  • Rich task and case management capabilities for end users
Oracle BPM Suite gives your organization the tools that it needs to illustrate complex case management lifecycles, define and assign business rules, and integrate your processes into critical enterprise systems. Everything from defining your data and process flows, to implementing actual case interactions; BPM Suite has an intuitive web-based interface where everyone on your staff can collaborate and deliver the best solution for your customers possible.

WebCenter Portal serves as a secure and role-based presentation layer that can be used to optimize the way that users interact with the case management system. For case management lifecycles to be effective, they need to be easy and intuitive to access as well as provide meaningful contextual content to end users who are interacting with their case. WebCenter Content supports the document management aspect of a case by managing the complete lifecycle of documents that are associated with cases, organizational policies, or any web content that helps to educate end-users.

Q. Do you have any customer or real-world examples you could share with our listeners? The Spirit of Alaska is a Retirements Benefit program that faced:
  • Limited resources and funding
  • Out-dated and undocumented processes
  • A drastic and immediate increase in the number of cases being processes
With the help of Oracle, the Alaska Department of Retirement Benefits was able to:
  • Automate and streamline their business processes
  • Reduce the frequency of data input errors
  • Improve customer service effectiveness
The end result was a solution that not only delivered retirements benefits to citizens more quickly and accurately, but also relieved the burden of the state’s business challenges now and in the future.
Thank you, Mitchell for sharing your strategies and best practices on how to deliver Adaptive Case Management with WebCenter and BPM.  You can listen to a podcast on this topic here, and be sure to tune in to the Oracle WebCenter Café Best Practices Podcast Series for more information!

Simplify Enterprise Mobility with Mobile Application Framework

Mon, 2015-06-29 10:14
By Mitchell Palski, Oracle WebCenter Sales Consultant
We are happy to have Mitchell Palski joining us on the blog for a Q&A around how you can Simplify Enterprise Mobility with Mobile Application Framework.
Q. How can Mobile Application Framework deliver Secure, Seamless Mobile for the Enterprise? For many years, corporate IT departments looked to the desktop as the only way to present information from their corporate enterprise applications. With the advent and exponential growth in mobile computing, applications are no longer tethered to the desktop; users expect to be able to switch among desktops, tablets, or smartphones anytime, anywhere. Multi-channel, mobile environments are becoming the new normal. Oracle helps simplify your organization’s transition into a mobile offering by providing a comprehensive platform for developing a mobile solution.
Q. Is it possible to Develop Cross-Platform Mobile Applications with Mobile Application Framework? Based on a hybrid architecture, Oracle MAF lets you build apps that are portable across devices and operating systems while still leveraging the device specific capabilities that deliver a rich user experience. 
Applications developed with Oracle MAF can be designed for phone and/or tablet form factors and packaged for either Apple iOS or Google Android – all from a single code base. Oracle MAF leverages the power of Java, HTML5, and JavaScript in a visual and declarative development environment to provide development teams with a more efficient approach to building on-device mobile apps. 
Oracle MAF end users will realize benefits from native apps that can work in both connected and disconnected mode, access device services, and store data in a local SQLite database.
Q. We’ve been hearing a lot about Digital Experience in the market today. How can Oracle Mobile Application Framework be leveraged to deliver optimized user Experiences? The key word in the question is “how”. Anyone can develop something using any number of frameworks, but what separates Oracle Mobile Application Framework? How can MAF not only accelerate your development lifecycle, but also enhance the product you are ultimately delivering to your users?

Oracle MAF is designed to increase developers’ productivity and enable intuitive mobile application development by offering extensive out-of-the-box capabilities and a declarative integrated environment. By easing the learning curve of app development, Oracle MAF allows developers to focus on user experience and get the most out of their organization’s mobile offering.

Mobile Application Framework includes a library of more than 80 professionally developed components that can be used to create rich mobile application interfaces in a declarative way. Oracle MAF components were designed specifically for mobile devices, which means they include support for touch and swipe gestures and are “skinned” to look great on mobile form factors. Developers also have the ability to quickly and declaratively integrate with local device services and features, such as camera, phone, SMS, contacts and GPS, through the declarative binding layer.

 Along with UX development, Oracle MAF supports the development of applications that can work offline as well as online. Applications are self-contained and can run on the mobile device in both connected and disconnected mode which means users are never stranded when they lose internet access.

In addition to the component based user interfaces, Oracle MAF can incorporate local HTML5 pages into the same application. This enables developers who prefer direct coding of the UI to incorporate their expertise along with third party components and code-libraries to create features in the application while keeping the ability to leverage the Oracle MAF container’s services.
Q. Integration is a common concern among business and IT today. Can you Integrate Data and Services across the Mobile Enterprise? Integration is one of the leading challenges of mobile application development. Oracle Mobile Platform supports and utilizes standard technologies and tools to expose many data formats and back-end business systems for exchange with any mobile application, primarily through the use of web services.

Web services provide the ability for a publisher of business services or content to provide that content and data to a consumer in a standardized and loosely coupled manner. In this case our MAF-developed mobile app is the consumer. SOAP or REST services can both be used by Oracle MAF through the use of data controls. Data controls create a level of abstraction over a business service that gives developers a consistent interface into all available business services, whether they are web-services or not.

They key to integration with an Enterprise is having those consumable services available to your mobile application. Many customers rush into mobile development without focusing on the business functions that their app will actually provide. A slick-interface that incorporates HTML5 and CSS3, ties into mobile device tools, and has offline functionality, still serves little to no purpose without the availability of a meaningful service-oriented architecture. The only case this might not be true is when you are developing a dictionary or glossary type app that is used purely an index for uses to reference.

Q. What about Connectivity? Can you Simplify Mobile Connectivity in the Cloud?
Separate from Mobile Application Framework, Oracle Mobile Cloud Service provides you with the tools you need to develop a strategy for supporting your mobile development. It provides out-of-the-box services that every mobile app requires, plus the ability to define and implement new enterprise-ready APIs quickly and cleanly. All API calls from your client applications are made via uniform REST calls, creating a cohesive development environment that’s easy to control and maintain.

Q. Finally, security is also a common concern when deploying anything on multiple devices. Can Mobile Application Framework deliver Secure Mobility Across All Layers? Security is a top priority for mobile application development given that mobile devices have higher risks of loss or theft. Oracle Mobile Application Framework comes with built in security that can limit access to your applications and ensure encryption of sensitive data. Oracle Mobile Application Framework enforces Communication Encryption, On-device Encryption, and SQLite Database Encryption. At the presentation layer, Developers can build single user interfaces that meet the needs of users with different privileges and provide role-based access to various features and pages.
Thank you, Mitchell for sharing your insight into how to Simplify Enterprise Mobility with Mobile Application Framework.  You can listen to a podcast on this topic here, and be sure to tune in to the Oracle WebCenter Café Best Practices Podcast Series for more information!

Is Cloud File Sharing Enough for Your Business?

Thu, 2015-06-25 09:08

As a consumer, we have gotten accustomed to the convenience of file sync and share (FSS) solutions like DropBox, WeTransfer, et al. Gone are the days when we would email files, videos and pictures to our friends and family. Using free consumer services we are now sending our files into ether and those get in the hands of our loved ones. In fact, I have noticed that I am even agnostic about such consumer cloud solutions. So long as those are free and sign up is not a hassle and my size limits are permissible, I just go for it.

In the enterprise world though, it is a bit different. The key differences are:

- File sharing is a means to an end. We don't simply send a file in ether or wait to receive those. The real need is around work collaboration. The idea is to not "send" but "share" files with work colleagues - either within our office, in a different location or sometimes even with a vendor, supplier or external company partner.

- Clearly the cloud solution needs to be scalable to allow for file storage and sharing not just among employees but also be able to accommodate the company's ecosystem.

- Because the goal is collaboration, the work needs to be real time. We would need the ability to be able to chat, converse or discuss as we share these files with others working on the same project or working off the same files. And wouldn't it be nice if it tied to the work productivity tools we have installed or are using like Office 365 and others? Oh, and while we are talking about what would be nice, it would be great if the cloud solution could figure out patterns of collaboration and recommend people to be added to the folder for sharing the documents, or based on usage pattern, discover relevant content.

- Again, because it is a means to an end, file sharing is likely part of a business process. So, it NEEDS to be tied to the business process where sharing is triggered as part of a process, and the end result on the documents further triggers off the next steps.

- While this would be cool to have in the consumer world too, in the enterprise world it is more of a need to be able to see/review/work on documents from within the application it is related to. So, for example, if I am working with my colleagues on a Request for Proposal (RFP) response, I would rather that it be embedded in my CRM as part of the opportunity so that my colleagues supporting me on that opportunity have ready access and automatic access to it and the document is related to other files I have on that account.

- One of the biggest advantages of a FSS solution is the ability to have access to documents we need anytime, anywhere on any device. But when the ecosystem is as big as we have for a company, when the breach/hacking/security risk is as big as it is for a company, the security stakes go way up than a consumer solution or even a feeble enterprise version of it. You need to be able to enforce security for your data sitting in the cloud, during transit and at access points (like mobile devices). Plus, there are obvious compliance requirements to be able to track and audit document access trails. And if your company has global presence then data residency policies come into play as well for compliance.

- And when working in an enterprise, we play different roles. We work at times with sensitive documents, and other times with less rigorous ones. The company itself may need to be able to segregate cloud instances by user or by content and still provide users the flexibility of toggling between multiple accounts keeping it just as easy as a consumer solution to be able to share, send and collaborate on documents.

These are just a few reasons why consumer FSS pedigree solutions would not fit the bill for an enterprise. And because point cloud solutions lead to governance and management challenges, even some enterprise solutions fail the litmus test for most enterprises. Net-net, simple file sharing or sending is not enough for an enterprise. Collaboration in a digital workplace goes way beyond that. Here is an infographic (or simply click on the picture above) that summarizes these challenges. Take a look and let me know what you think?

PaaS Launch and Cloud File Sharing and Collaboration

Wed, 2015-06-24 07:28

Thanks for joining us for the big PaaS launch on Monday, June 22nd with Larry Ellison, Thomas Kurian and other senior Oracle and customer executives. Ellison announced more than 24 new services to Oracle Cloud Platform which is a comprehensive, integrated suite of services that make it easier for developers, IT professionals, business users, and analysts to build, extend, and integrate cloud applications and drive co-existence with the existing on-premise infrastructure. For more details on the announcement, cloud services and customer videos, you can catch the on demand online replay of the event.

One of the key areas for PaaS is cloud content and collaboration that drives frictionless user collaboration, content sharing and business process automation anywhere, anytime and on any device. As an enterprise, you will well recognize the need to drive workforce productivity and operational efficiency by enabling secure availability and access to content on any device, within and beyond the firewall and connecting it to the business processes and the applications (SaaS and on-premise) to well, get work done. So, beyond just cloud file sharing which is what current Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) solutions do, you need to be able to share and access content in context and then be able to drive business processes using that content. That is true cloud content and collaboration and that is what will drive output and improve productivity in a digital workplace.

Check out this video that we recently released. While it discusses a specific use case tracking the lifecycle from marketing to sales to service, imagine the power of enabling real time collaboration among employees, remote workforce, external vendors and partners and being able to drive output from anywhere, anytime and any device. And let us know what use case do you come across often in your workplace; we look forward to hearing from you.

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Now Launching Oracle Process Cloud Service

Mon, 2015-06-22 06:45

Announcing Oracle Process Cloud Service
-       Empowering Business Users with Process Automation

Oracle Process Cloud Service equips your line of business to deliver on digital automation of process applications - independent of IT. In a zero-code, cloud based infrastructure, Oracle Process Cloud Service empowers the business user to manage the entire lifecycle of business processes and gain actionable insight on process health and SLAs. This takes business empowerment to a new level of automation and efficiency.

Join us in Making History

We are excited Larry Ellison will be breaking ground with Oracle Process Cloud Service on Monday June 22. Join us online or on the web – we have an exciting lineup of customers, hands on demos, product experts and more.

[Event |Redwood Shores] Jun 22 Integrate, Accelerate, Lead with Oracle Cloud Platform (link
[Event |Webcast] Jun 22 Larry Ellison Unveils New Oracle Cloud Platform Services (link)

How to Learn More on Oracle Process Cloud Service?

[BPM-CON Webcast] Rapid Process Automation on the Cloud (link
[Solution Brief] A New Approach to Digital Transformation (link)
[Datasheet]  Productive Work Management in the Cloud (link)
[Video] Introducing Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)
[Infographic] Empowering the Business to Deliver at Market Speed (link)
[eBook] Rapidly Design, Automate and Manage Processes on the Cloud (link)
[Video] Technical dive into Process Cloud Service (link)

Testimonials: PCS Customers and Partners in Action 

[Video] Land O Lakes Extends SaaS with Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)
[Video] Flextronics Speeds up BPM with Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)
[Video] Avio Empowers Business with Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)
[Video] eProseed Digitizes with Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)
[Video] Sofbang Extends SOA with with Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)
[Video] Hitachi Manages Contracts with Oracle Process Cloud Service (link)


[Analyst Report] Ovum: Oracle Brings Process to the Cloud (link)
[Byline] Forbes: What IT Pros Must do to Survive, Thrive Amid Rapid Change (link)


[Event |Webcast] Jun 19  Oracle Public Cloud: Platform as a Service (link)
[Event |Webcast] Jun 22  Larry Ellison Unveils New Oracle Cloud Platform Services (link)
[Event |Redwood Shores] Jun 22 Integrate, Accelerate, Lead with Oracle Cloud Platform (link)
[More Events]  BPM Events: Click here

To learn more join us at Follow us on twitter @OracleBPM