At PeopleSoft talk, Marc Weintraub, Oracles’ Senior Director of Product Strategy, explained why there might not be a PeopleSoft 9.3. Some people took this information as an indicator that Oracle is finally abandoning PeopleSoft. From a business point of view, abandonment does not make a lot of sense. ERP is generally a very sticky product, and companies don’t easily give up on them unless they see issues with future road map and huge incremental maintenance cost. With increasing competition, playing with any of the above sentiments can only speed up the process for clients to jump ship.
So what does it mean that PeopleSoft 9.3 will not be out? It means Oracle is finally touching on both the above stated factors but in a positive way. With the new selecting adoption process, PeopleSoft is finally matching or outpacing the speed of the cloud delivery (In two years, it has already released 12 images, 6 updates per year!!!). Selective adoption, provides three very important features that every client should pay attention to:
- Small incremental functionality upgrades – Every image provides small functionality upgrade which keeps the process in trend with the current business environment but also makes change easier to manage
- Selection adoption – Taking control of what do you want to implement and when. So if payroll is important today, but performance cannot be touched because reviews are going on then you can just implement payroll updates now and performance later
- Lower TCO – This is the most important factor. With the incremental small updates, now the clients don’t have to quiver with big upgrade cost. Once you build an internal process to implement images than it will look very similar to the tax updates. With PeopleSoft you now have control of so many cost drivers that any other platform cannot match with the same flexibility. You control upgrade cost (big bang or incremental), infrastructure cost (on premise or cloud), development cost (vanilla or internal or external), maintenance cost (internal or outsourced or managed systems) and processing cost (self service vs. core).
So my take on Oracle not delivering PeopleSoft 9.3 is that they are doubling down on PeopleSoft. They are more committed now than ever before.