Doris Wong: PeopleSoft Enterprise
by Aaron Lazenby and Margaret Terry Lindquist; additional editing by Marta Bright, May 2007
The combination of PeopleSoft and Oracle brought together some of the best technology people in the world, and it transformed Oracle into a software company with more applications and technology customers than any other company in the world. Doris Wong is honest about the challenges she's faced as vice president and general manager of Oracle's PeopleSoft Enterprise applications. She was also upbeat as she spoke about PeopleSoft Enterprise 9.0. As she noted in her interview with Profit, this release of PeopleSoft Enterprise, called the Extended Value Release, offers customers major upgrades in every single area—from human capital management and enterprise learning management to enterprise performance management, and more.
PROFIT: What's been your biggest challenge at Oracle?
WONG: This release has been huge—it's the culmination of a more-than-year-long project to deliver the enhancements our customers are asking for and integrate core components of Oracle Fusion Middleware with PeopleSoft applications. There are three themes around this release—No. 1 is around technology, where we're continuing to extend the value of the release by bringing next-generation technology into the PeopleSoft platform. This means that our customers don't have to go to Oracle Fusion to be able to take advantage of that; we're bringing that technology into our current release and our current platform—for example, we now have a service-oriented architecture and Web services enablement. We also brought in XML reporting. Again, this is our next-generation technology with Oracle Fusion, but we brought that into our PeopleSoft products today.
PROFIT: What's been the reaction from customers?
WONG: It's been fantastic. I spoke with one customer who didn't even know that, in release 9.0 and our PeopleTools 8.48, we have the capability to have a service-oriented architecture and deliver out-of-the-box Web services. He said, "Wow, that is really a compelling reason for me to move forward to that release." He needs this architecture in his environment and he can do that on the PeopleSoft products, he doesn't need to move forward to a next-generation product to have that capability.
PROFIT: What's the second theme?
WONG: Best-in-class business processes. For every single one of our product areas, we reviewed the business processes and reviewed feedback from our customers, so we could continue to focus on enriching and enhancing the business processes. For example, in the area of workforce management, or talent management, we've looked at the business process around that entire lifecycle of applications and identified the features and functionality that we can add to continue to enhance and provide a tightly integrated business process for our customers. We did it for workforce management, and we're doing it for our business processes in all areas of PeopleSoft.
PROFIT: And the third theme?
WONG: Superior ownership experience. This is an initiative that started with our PeopleSoft applications two years before the acquisition, where we really were focused around the total ownership experience. It was a program designed around lowering the total cost of ownership and improving our products for our customers. We wanted our customers to be able to upgrade the applications in a seamless, low-cost manner. We supplied them with tools that would allow an easier implementation and architecture that allowed them to easily integrate disparate systems.