Although Oracle’s in-house developer team is world-class, it can’t develop every solution to address every customer need. When new customer priorities arise, Oracle often turns to partners with Oracle product knowledge and specific industry expertise to address customer requirements.
Joe Barkai of IDC Manufacturing Insights finds that while software companies often load products with extensive, general features and functionality, the breadth of a solution may prevent customers from addressing unique industry challenges. “What I find very important in creating relationships between customers and software vendors is deep industry understanding,” Barkai says.
Sierra Atlantic, the implementation partner for Ciena’s Agile Product Lifecycle Management Integration Pack for Oracle E-Business Suite for Design to Release project, is also one of many partners working directly with Oracle as part of its codevelopment program.
Working with Oracle, Sierra Atlantic has developed and released the Agile Product Lifecycle Management Integration Pack for SAP for Design to Release. This product was released in January 2009. Sierra Atlantic is also working with Oracle to build an Agile Variant to Oracle E-Business Suite management integration pack, scheduled for release in 2009.
Sierra Atlantic’s staffers draw on their experience as systems integrators to address differences between software packages and the specific needs of industry segments and customers. This knowledge helps Sierra Atlantic technologists devise new programs for software customers—and is an example of why Oracle selected Sierra Atlantic to be part of the codevelopment program.
G.K. Murthy, senior vice president of enterprise solutions at Sierra Atlantic, says that a partner has to understand integration architecture if it is going to understand its customers’ needs. But that’s not the same as being interested in participating in technology development. “An engineering partner is one who understands the total journey,” Murthy says, and he believes that Sierra Atlantic has perspective on both fronts as a systems integrator working with different customers.
Being able to bridge this gap between customer needs and the realities of the development process is what makes the codevelopment program so valuable. And Sierra Atlantic, as evidenced by the company’s work with Ciena’s project, is an example of the effort’s success.