On Demand Makes Sense

by Minda Zetlin, May 2011

When Intertek created two portals, My TestCentral for customers and Report Manager for internal use, it did so using Oracle Portal hosted by Oracle On Demand.

“Because we were offering our portals, outsourcing the hosting to on-demand made sense,” explains Sherrie MacNeill, global business systems manager at Intertek. “The technology is not simple. There’s a database layer, middle tier, and applications servers—it’s a whole stack that we would have to support. Oracle knows how to host and support its products. We’ve had a great support relationship and wanted to stay with the experts.”

More than 5.5 million end users currently use Oracle On Demand solutions to improve productivity while their IT departments reduce expenses to a predictable monthly charge. Customers can choose how to deploy Oracle On Demand software based on their specific needs and budget requirements—hosted and managed applications and software-as-a-service (SaaS) deployment models are currently available.

Both these offerings allow customers to move the cost of hosting and managing their Oracle implementations from a capital expense to an operating expense, thus freeing up more capital dollars for revenue-generating (or strategic) projects.

Intertek’s MacNeill especially appreciates having a service delivery manager at Oracle On Demand. “He is our one-stop shop,” she says. “Like any large company, there are multiple points of contact at Oracle. We can take any issue to him, and he will get it moving or find the information we need. It’s a great partnership.”

Using Oracle On Demand saves on labor and provides greater flexibility, she says. “We do not employ a database administrator; that comes with our On Demand relationship. We have developers who understand the technology, but they don’t have to apply patches or perform other maintenance. A lot of the workload is removed from the Intertek staff. With the Oracle stack, we have the option to expand or migrate to different technology as we need to.”

In fact, Intertek is currently doing just that. “We’ve upgraded our database,” MacNeill says. “We were on Oracle Database 10g, and now we’ve moved up to [Oracle Database] 11g.” Working with Oracle On Demand, the company is now planning ahead. “We’ll be upgrading to Oracle Portal 11g and are investigating other technology options.” 

For More Information

Oracle Portal 11g
Oracle On Demand
Expert Reporting

Minda Zetlin is coauthor with Bill Pfleging of The Geek Gap: Why Business and Technology Professionals Don’t Understand Each Other and Why They Need Each Other to Survive (Prometheus Books, 2006).
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