Wednesday, 5 April 2017

OUG Ireland 17

Last year Ireland tried a two day event and the general sense of opinion was that although individual things needed to be improved, it was a good thing. So this year the committee worked hard to create a compelling two day agenda.

The event kicked off with a welcome from me, and introduction to Brendan Tierney, our new Member Advocate, and James Jeynes our new Executive Director who was over for the day. Then John Caulfield who is also on the committee gave a great, 'What is Oracle up to, and how does that translate to the Irish Market', exactly what the brief asked for.

John stood in for the country leader John Donnelly who couldn't be there, but I was touched by his tweet the night before.

The technical streams take care of themselves, this is a popular event for speakers in Europe and the committee have too many good papers to select from. Maria Colgan was the keynote speaker for the technical streams. Maria as i will have said on previous years is the local girl - done good. Maria started in Oracle Ireland and moved to HQ many years ago where she has been in Database Product Management,, Queen of the Optimiser and more recently the latest member of the 'Ask Tom' team. She was joined by another member Chris Saxon who gave everyone the lowdown on the 12c Release 2 Database. 

A highlight of the Business Analytics for me was Edward Rowske, he like Oren Nakdimon was using this event as the start of a holiday, both had their partners with them and bothe were independently travelling north of the border to visit places like the Giant's Causeway, my home turf. Combining pleasure with conferences is something I personally always try to do, so I was pleased to see others with the same aspirations.

In my area the apps world, it is harder. As I have said we are at an point where content for today's EBS is hard, and yet there are still many organisations who have invested so much in this and are going nowhere fast. So we put together a one day stream for EBS and the second day we did just a morning for Cloud Apps. We gave the afternoon to the APEX guys who would fill the development stream on their own. And again one of my frequent comments, What is it that the do in The Netherlands that makes them so good at development?

We kicked off the Applications stream with a discussion. Mairead Dooley-Ffrench From Oracle and Tony Cassidy from Vertices, both from the committee, along with myself talked about where we see the Apps market today. It worked well with a very full room and plenty of conversation. Even if organisations are not ready for the next stage in their evolution the people supporting then are more than interested. The day ended with a mishap with the internet, causing the premature end to one session which was really sad, but otherwise technology held up. 

Sarah Green from the Office For National Statistics, one of our customers at Certus spoke about their complete migration from EBS to cloud, both HCM & ERP. I love this presentation as it says everything about how we work. I shared this story as an interview with Sarah in the current edition of Oracle Scene. As always with this story, the audience have lots of questions which Sarah answers so well.

I then spoke about PaaS4SaaS and Sarah and her colleague Kevin who runs their support function, asked that I come and show them it in more detail, This is the best time to start looking at extending your apps, once you have been live for a few months and you can see the value of removing some of the still manual heavy processes in your organisation.

In the evening after the social drinks, we have the now traditional ACE Dinner in the Rustic Stone. Service was mind glowingly slow but the food and the company made up for it.

Another new idea for this event was a vendor showcase. We decided to have the exhibition on the first day only, but with an opportunity on day two for sponsors to address all delegates just before lunch. This was a new idea and worked well, Sometimes people avoid sponsors and actually when they share with you what they actually have achieved for customers they are actually very interesting. Something we will refine but defiantly repeat.

The event finished with a technical Q&A. I had to leave when it was meant to finish as Dublin had a bus strike and i needed to get home to Belfast. Who expected the last session to overrun by 30 minutes on a Friday? Not the doubters who said two days was too long!

And if you were there or missed out, the next OUG Ireland Meetup arranged by Brendan is 11th May.

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