Cloud Computing: Larry Ellison's Top 10 Reasons Why You'll Want It
By Bob Evans, June 6, 2012
I think the internet was the last big change. The internet is maturing. They don't call it the internet anymore. They call it cloud computing.
If the internet is indeed becoming the cloud, then it's the cloud that will continue the profound transformation of every facet of our lives that the internet began to trigger on a mass scale about 20 years ago: from music distribution and commerce to education and investing, from how we communicate to how we monitor our health, and all the way out to how companies present themselves to the world and attempt to move and evolve in concert with the fast-changing and increasingly social needs and desires of customers.
As Ellison sees it, cloud computing represents a fantastic opportunity for technology companies to help customers simplify IT, that often-baffling and always-changing sector of the corporate world that's become increasingly valuable in today's global economy.
"We're trying to do for the data center what Apple did for the consumer," Ellison said at the All Things D conference last week in describing Oracle's strategy of engineering hardware and software together to achieve optimal performance and liberate customers from the drudgery of systems integration.
Vision Becomes Reality
"Cloud computing is a fantastic opportunity for technology companies to help customers simplify IT."
"People do need to simplify their existing data centers and deliver services in simpler ways," Ellison said, and later expanded on that: "Long before we bought Sun, we decided to build the Exadata database machine. We thought data centers were unnecessarily complex. People were buying storage from EMC, and networks from Cisco, and all these other separate parts together. I said ‘Let's do all of it.' We'll sell one building block you can plug into your data center."
That vision becomes reality today with the general availability of Oracle Cloud—an announcement significant enough that it inspired Ellison to post his first tweet. Far more than just the release of some cloud-centric point solutions, Oracle Cloud represents a highly strategic inflection point for the company that pulls together the following critical elements and reveals the highly ambitious arc that Ellison and the company have begun to trace:
But for a quick overview of what Oracle Cloud is and why the company sees it as the culmination of many strategic initiatives and acquisitions over the past few years, here's my own analysis of Larry Ellison's top 10 reasons why customers will agree that Oracle Cloud can help them compete more aggressively and intelligently, simplify IT, offer a comprehensive social relationship platform, reduce capital expenditures, and increase operational efficiency.
1. Gives businesses optimal performance and value.
Oracle Cloud gives customers a complete, end-to-end cloud solution—e.g., SaaS applications for business users, and a rich PaaS platform for developers—to ensure those businesses get the best value for their investment with more speed and better economics than any one competitor or patchwork of cloud competitors can match.
Business Value: Because Oracle's end-to-end solution allows customers to spend less time and money buying and integrating arcane IT equipment, those customers can devote more investment dollars toward growth and innovation.
2. Runs Oracle's modern Fusion Applications out of the box.
Oracle Cloud is designed from the ground up to run applications for ERP, HCM, talent management, sales and marketing, and customer experience.
Business Value: Companies can rapidly move key business processes and functions into the cloud, increasing operational efficiency and reducing capital investments.
3. Provides a comprehensive social relationship platform for engaging customers, partners, and employees.
As the impact of social interactions continues to soar among consumers, businesses must have end-to-end social-relationship capabilities operating in real time. The social services within Oracle Cloud offer those end-to-end capabilities that are far more robust and engaging than patchwork, siloed solutions, and that comprehensive set of fully integrated enterprise social solutions includes marketing, selling, commerce, service, listening/insights, and employee social.
Business Value: A new study from IBM says that 57 percent of CEOs are focused on driving more social engagements by raising their companies' skills in customer intimacy, loyalty, and personal experiences.
4. Drives new levels of social intelligence and inbound insights.
As businesses expand those social relationships, they need to be able to track the nature of those relationships and feed relevant insights and intelligence to their sales teams. Through the seamless integration of application and platform assets, Oracle Cloud allows sales and marketing teams to efficiently mine insights and engage with their communities.
Business Value: Social-media monitoring and related real-time insights give companies the intelligence they need to make optimal real-time decisions on inventory mix, new opportunities, resource deployment, and more.
5. Optimizes Platform-as-a-Service integration with Oracle Cloud applications.
While most SaaS vendors are unable to invest in creating fully compatible and extensible cloud platforms, Oracle Fusion Applications integrate seamlessly and optimally with the company's platform services.
Business Value: Again, fewer integration projects, better performance, and the ability to keep IT teams focused on high-value projects rather than endless tuning, monitoring, and workarounds.
6. Places more autonomy and decision-making in hands of customers.
Businesses can tap into Oracle Cloud quickly and easily via self-service sign-up, management, and monitoring; instant provisioning; and a pay-as-you-go subscription model.
Business Value: Customers dictate rate of consumption and related services based on their needs and objectives.
7. Offers customers world-class security and architecture.
Oracle is the only cloud vendor that meets or exceeds some of the stringent requirements that customers feel SaaS vendors must deliver, including security, high performance, and high availability.
Business Value: Requires less risk, less integration, and less testing so that customers can spend more time focused on their customers, growth, and opportunities.
8. Allows customers to set their own timetables for upgrades.
While some cloud vendors set rigid upgrade schedules around which customers must adapt their business operations, Oracle Cloud lets customers choose their own upgrade timetable within available upgrade periods.
Business Value: Customers dictate the pacing and schedule, rather than having it dictated to them by their vendor.
9. Liberates money and time for customers via completeness of the end-to-end solution.
Oracle's unmatched enterprise-software lineup means that customers no longer have to hunt around for suitable components to fill out their cloud solutions, or develop custom products built on platforms that are not widely used.
Business Value: Customers benefit from less investment on integration and testing, less risk, less complexity, fewer moving parts, and greater speed to market.
About the Author: Bob Evans
Bob Evans is senior vice-president of communications for Oracle, and can be reached at email@example.com.
10. Frees customers from having to function as systems integrators.
Other cloud vendors that offer only partial solutions require their customers to spend millions of dollars tying together all the various one-off cloud components, a process that's repeated over time as the patchwork system requires upgrades, fixes, and integration with other systems.
Business Value: Customers can keep their IT teams focused on high-value revenue-generating projects involving mobile, social, and Big Data instead of having to tinker with boxes and cables all day long.
Ellison and Oracle have invested several years and billions of dollars in creating all the pieces that make up Oracle Cloud, and believe that no other tech company can match the scale of their cloud offerings, the ease of use, the end-to-end integration, and the infusion of features and capabilities designed for the social/mobile-driven world of today.
For businesses looking to leverage all of cloud computing's benefits, may the best cloud win.