At the end of 2012 Oracle delivered its first release of OpenUI in its innovation pack of 2012. Now three years later a small number of companies have migrated from high interactivity to OpenUI and harvested some of the cool benefits. But, although many companies have migrated to, or beyond IP2012, the majority still haven’t enabled OpenUI.

Most companies dread the migration, being haunted by long costly upgrades of yesteryears and witnessing cumbersome projects at peer companies.

And indeed, I can’t say that migration to OpenUI is without costs. And, indeed, the migration is more often triggered by technical compatibility issues than offering new business value. IT departments have to beg the business for money to ensure continuity, while the business doesn’t get any new functionality. This is a bitter pill.

But we have to bear in mind that the upgrade and migration to OpenUI in some companies is combined with an upgrade of the database and the server’s operating system. A large part of the costs will probably not be the result of the actual Siebel configuration changes. As far as I can see, these changes are limited, as long as you have limited the use of browser script.  Furthermore, I truly believe that OpenUI can offer real business value.

Enabling OpenUI in your company will revitalize your Siebel implementation for many years to come. It will protect your investment extending the Siebel lifecycle for at least 7 years. Just like the upgrade to 7.5 from 2002 and 8.1 from 2008, it will ensure that Siebel can stand the test of time.

So, how is it possible that the Siebel OpenUI migration is more than a face lift? Not just a new coach upon an old chassis with an outdated motor!  Old wine in new bottles!

Well, for me the upgrade to OpenUI and IP2015 is just the prelude to a complete revitalization of Siebel. Oracle still invests large amounts into the development of Siebel and they have published their roadmap until 2020. But most of all, the gradual transformation of Siebel tools into Siebel Composer will give Siebel the boost to rival any other CRM platform being on premise or in the cloud.

OpenUI and Siebel Composer battle the two major issues often associated with Siebel. The limited possibilities for adapting the user interface, and the rigid development and deployment process. OpenUI and Siebel Composer will offer better usability and increase the agility.

This week, Ebicus hosted a User Experience (UX) event for her customers. Of the twenty five attendee, two already activated OpenUI. Only one of these customers implemented some new UI features to enhance the usability. Six other companies started or are on the verge of starting the upgrade. In a demo Ebicus showed how OpenUI can enhance the user experience and add value for the business. In a second demo Aer Software demonstrated how to enhance Siebel with a modern mobile UI layer, based on web technology like Ruby on Rails, Angular and Backbone, offering a modern and agile alternative besides OpenUI.

Both demos showed how the strong internal Siebel engine, with all her business rules and back office integration, is enhanced with the modern look and feel. A look and feel that will appeal to sales and service agents. Improving their ability to interact with the customer and help them to insert data. Making work more fun, interactive and less stressful.

Both technics can enhance functionality outside the repository. Enabling isolated deployment and therefore increase agility by lowering the risk of regression contamination.

The demos showed that Siebel will stand the test of time and still can rival with the best of them. Siebel is a grand cru, old wine which remains at the top or even gets better. I firmly believe in the future of Siebel. If you like to find out whether your Siebel investment is worth protecting and whether your Siebel implementation can be revitalized to add business value, just give me a call.

Posted to the private LinkedIn account of Patrick Gaspersz, february 5th 2016. 

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