First time in the Biggest User Group Conference in Europe

ukoug_logoI was very anxious to participate for the first time on the biggest user group conference in Europe. As a user group advocate it is great to see and live huge accomplishments of a user group that has been established in 1983.

I was please to have the Oracle ACE Program funding this trip to Liverpool, UK, to me and more than 60 Oracle ACE Directors -and as Debra said “best Oracle brains and knowledge sharers outside their own staff”.IMG_6024

I stopped in London, where I was visiting for the first time and took some time to do tours. It is an amazing city with more than 13 million inhabitants standing on the beautiful River Thames. It is a global city with a huge diversity and history everywhere.

My first memories came with the British accent, since I learned since I was 6-year-old -pushed by mom at that time, which I will never stop thanking- British English and every book was based on different situations and places in London. I couldn’t stop having that in mind and also how I needed to change my “American pronunciation” to a more British style –the best I could.

Gus_BigBenI took a train to Liverpool for the conference, by the way a beautiful modern train. Of course, I was expecting a good quality train from the oldest railway system in the world and was part of the seeds for the railway system in Argentina -which used to be one of the biggest railway systems in the world a long time ago.IMG_5952

Sunday I had time prior to the dinner with the Oracle ACE team and some Oracle friends to visit some of the major attractions in Liverpool, and of course one of them is “The Beatles”. I got to learn more of their history and how they created the most wonderful music in just 7 years that even my daughter with 10 years listens periodically.

Their legacy stills continue inspiring music and also other aspects of how marketing can empower talent.

Cliff_KeynoteMonday was a first big day for the UKOUG Conference. Starting with a Keynote of Cliff Godwin. The presentation presented multiple aspects of how a big investment of Oracle is going into the modernization and productivity improvements. “We’re not in a rush for [Oracle EBS] Release 12.3 or Release 13” said Cliff regarding future upgrades of the product, which is an important statement to help organizations to organize the strategy of their investments.

Right after the keynote, I delivered the first session on “It’s all about the User Experience. Learn about the new Oracle EBS 12.2 Usability enhancements” that was aligned with Cliff’s note and almost a natural continuation of his topics with a hands-on demonstration of the new mobile applications available for Oracle E-Business Suite. With a very good attendance to my session -above 80-attendee- the questions were around which EBS version will work with the mobile native applications.

The second session that I delivered in the first day was on “A Real-Life Example of Fusion/Cloud HCM with Oracle E-Business Suite HRMS Co-Existence”. I had very good questions from some organizations that are willing to start the road into the coexistence approach for E-Business Suite and Cloud. To my attention and based on some conversations with one of the founders of Oracle Partners’ leader in the Cloud HCM industry in Europe the implementations are growing exponentially over the last year.

Tech_PartyTuesday was another big day in the keynote expressing how the User Group community continues to growth and also announcing that next year the conference will be going back to Birmingham including Apps15, Tech15 and JDE15 in a single venue.

Richard Garsthagen took over the stage with a great presentation on how you can make IT consumable and of course the “Oracle’s cloud computing strategy”. The key message was that it is now critical to have software and hardware for the IT consumption and that was one of the biggest steps that took Oracle many years ago which now will definitely be a huge differentiator among the closest competitors.

I have the pleasure to be invited by Tom King, from CGI, to a Business Intelligence panel, with a full house and people willing to understand what are the tools available for Oracle Discoverer replacement. Tom introduced the topic and I went over the current Oracle options, while Jamie Cassidy, from Qubix, presented all the other options available to support the migration.

Tuesday night was the appreciation event and we had time to celebrate another successful user group conference with friends. That night two parties were going on and we did not miss any. Starting with the Apps14 celebration listening Beatles’ music and then visiting the Tech14 party at PanAm. Yes, we had time for a photo booth stop!

Wednesday started with another exceptional keynote, this time with multiple speakers and summarized by Jeremy Ashley presenting the latest developments on innovation on the user experience.

liukoug_I delivered my third session “Planning and Executing an Upgrade to Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition 11g” with another good audience asking aspects of migration and the impact of Oracle Data Integrator (ODI) as the replacement of Informatica for the Extract-Transform-Load process.

Every aspect of the conference was very well organized and the people attending did make the difference. Liverpool is beautiful but I won’t miss the weather :-). Big congratulations for the UKOUG!

I hope to visit United Kingdom next year for another great user group conference.