The Global Capabilities of Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12
by Monica Mehta, November 2008
Businesses such as France Telecom know that in order to succeed today, they must be able to compete with other global businesses. Technology is a critical part of that capability. Organizations must have the technology they need to have a single, comprehensive view of customers, suppliers, partners, and operations worldwide and a global view across systems and divisions. They must be able to operate across the globe while meeting local compliance and human resources requirements. All of their financials, including tax, payment, and banking functions, should be centralized in order to save money, streamline functions, and eliminate redundancy.
Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 has been designed specifically for the challenges that global competition can present. Its main objective is to give companies the technology to operate easily among multiple countries and time zones. “When we started development of Release 12, our goal was to deliver a single, seamless solution that would allow customers to run their business anywhere that they do business,” says Terrance Wampler, vice president of financials applications strategy at Oracle. “Our aim was to allow customers to buy or sell anything to anyone, anywhere, at any time.”
Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 was also created to aid customers who find that as their businesses grow, managing those businesses becomes more complex. Effective finance organizations are standardizing on global business processes and driving constant process improvement to better manage complexity and improve transparency. “They are also moving toward common data definitions to improve accuracy via a single source of truth and to decrease maintenance,” says Wampler. “Standardizing and simplifying are critical, because that empowers organizations to manage the complexity that comes with growth, rather than be hindered by it.”
Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 includes a number of functions that help companies handle growth. Oracle Profitability Manager gives users expanded capabilities to perform profitability analysis and reporting along any dimension of the business, including products, channels, and segments. It also makes it possible to drill down to individual customers. Oracle Strategic Network Optimization lets users continuously evaluate the cost and revenue implications of any decision affecting a company’s global supply chain. Oracle Project Portfolio Analysis gives users the ability to choose, fund, and prioritize global projects based on what-if scenario analysis. Oracle Human Resources’ expanded country support allows organizations to manage all employees within a single system, while adhering to local regulations. Oracle Advanced Procurement simplifies procurement processes by providing a consolidated procurement work center that helps companies manage suppliers more efficiently.
Managing Global Finances
Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 also includes more than 300 enhancements to help companies manage their finances globally. Oracle Financials allows for a single transaction to create multiple accounting entries based on corporate or local generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). This provides large multinational companies with a consistent method of financial reporting that also meets local requirements. The software’s new ledger architecture enables a single ledger that can manage multiple currencies.The subledger accounting architecture provides the ability to integrate legacy applications into a company’s centralized accounting architecture. The centralized trading community architecture provides one data model for a single source of truth to consistently model all trading partners, including first parties, banks, customers, and suppliers. The centralized tax management solution allows users to configure their tax applicability and simplify their reporting.
“With Release 12, we believe we’ve significantly simplified financials management operations while maintaining security and control,” says Wampler. “We’ve allowed people to separate their operational activities from some of their financial management activities.”
One of the most popular pieces of Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 is the shared services center. Now, organizations can centralize services to a single location, consolidating finance systems, standardizing processes, and identifying global process owners to eliminate redundancies. This cost-saving module allows companies to design better controls into the processes, improving governance and reducing audit costs. Shared service organizations also provide better customer service and more-timely and more-consistent information. “Global shared service organizations have enabled our customers to centralize business functions, improve processing efficiency, and take advantage of a global workforce that is engaged across time zones,” says Wampler. “Coupled with automation provided by technology advances, these investments present an opportunity for amazing productivity gains and significant cost savings.”
Multinational companies can be overwhelmed by the volume of information accumulated by all of their systems. With Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12, many procedures and functions can be standardized and streamlined, which saves time and cost. “For many of our multinational customers such as France Telecom, the key driver for Release 12 is to simplify the ability to manage across business functions, organizations, and locations,” says Wampler. “[France Telecom] wanted to find an easier way to manage across its business functions and leverage architectural enhancements that make it easier to provide standardization, consistency, and visibility into operations across lines of business, geographies, and organizations.”
The benefits of Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 are not only for businesses that operate globally, however. They can also be reaped by companies that operate in a single location, thanks to an infrastructure that provides increased visibility across operations. “Taking a global perspective will allow your finance organization to drive out complexity and focus on value-added activities, and the principles can be applied to any level of operation or size of enterprise,” says Wampler. “With the proliferation of information available today, customers, suppliers, management, and employees expect easier access to their data, with trust in its consistency, quality, and timeliness.”