I work for Domain Systems and as PLM specialists, we do a lot of consulting work for businesses that own Oracle Agile. As I meet with clients there seems to be one question on all their minds:
Is it time to move off our Agile solution and go cloud?
As you might imagine, the answer is going to vary from business to business, industry to industry. Many important factors need to be considered.
For instance, Agile is a matured product and getting close to being retired. Consider also, the longer you stay on Agile, the more you miss the benefits of this next generation of PLM technology (aptly dubbed 'PLM 4.0').
An Oracle Agile User’s Guide to Modernization
Domain Systems recently hosted an online seminar to help Agile PLM users assess their current solution and to encourage all to have in place a strategy for migration.
The webinar featured keynote speaker, Jeff Nichols, Vice President of Professional Services at Domain, a 20-year Agile specialist and an expert in the latest PLM technologies.
I'm going to reference several points he makes, but before we dive in, be sure and take a look at the on-demand presentation. Jeff covers a lot of important ground that I wont be able to get to here, but which will help in your modernization efforts.
Agile 9 Roadmap
The first item on our agenda is settling the rumors regarding Oracle Agile retirement. If you have been worried about the uncertain direction Oracle Agile is going I have an important update for you.
Take a look at the following slides and we'll discuss some key points to takeaway from Oracle's development roadmap.¹
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Note two key parts of the Agile PLM rollout. As of April 2021:
- Oracle will provide Premier Support for 9.3.6 through June 2024
- Premier Support for the soon-to-be-released 9.3.7 will go through 2028
This may put some minds at ease as there have been rumors of a more imminent retirement. Although this extension could be great news for some Agile users, Jeff advises that there will come a time everyone will have to move off Agile and it will be retired.
We'll return to that in a minute.
Migration to Oracle SCM Cloud
With Agile closing in on an end of life, your plan to transition should be a step or two ahead. The next question becomes, “where then should we migrate to?”
While many excellent platforms exist on the market today, we find that most Agile PLM users have the easiest time adopting and realizing business benefit via Oracle Cloud.
Let us look at some of the reasons why:
- Lower cost of ownership
- Lower entry costs
- Speed of implementation
- Limited infrastructure required
- Less configuration needed
- Improved user experience and user interface
- Faster, more reliable technology
- Faster time to value
- Reduced capital expenditure
With these benefits backed up by actual users, it becomes easier to see why businesses have enjoyed an all-around improved product lifecycle management experience.
As Jeff points out:
Whenever you can save money and get to market faster while adding current functionality to a critical application is a legitimate reason to look at making a move to the cloud.
The challenge is to figure out a strategy that works best for you, whether that means staying with your current Agile solution or making a move to cloud. Ask yourself, what is best for the company and the direction we are going? What is the cost vs value vs functionality?
One thing is certain, you need to do something and start evaluating for the next PLM because time is running out.
In the past, I have heard from some Oracle Agile users that cloud-based PLM is just too immature or that on-premises Agile is more robust.
While that may have been true at one time, any remaining functionality gaps are shrinking or has disappeared altogether, depending on your industry and business requirements. In those instances, a hybrid approach is highly recommended.
Benefit to the Cloud
In his presentation, Jeff identifies several functionality gains in a move to cloud. See the following slide to view the scope of Oracle's PLM 4.0.
Oracle Cloud has the similar capabilities as Agile, but with its biggest distinctive quality being integration with the rest of the enterprise record. This is made possible because Oracle Cloud is a true SaaS (Software as a Service) offering, built with a framework that enables full data centralization.
A few things to note prior to taking the next steps, however:
- Be sure to allow for a learning curve
- Time must be dedicated to allowing for all necessary onboarding services (implementation, data migration, development, deployment, etc.)
All-in-all, the best advice I can give you is the sooner you take the beginning steps, the sooner you will be able to roll out a next gen cloud solution and begin realizing its value.
To recap: Agile will continue to have support through 2027. There are many things to consider when taking yourself to PLM 4.0. As a tool - Oracle Cloud has evolved significantly, and the time to act is now.
What's Up Next ?
We will conclude the webinar series with part 2 of The Agile User’s Guide to Modernization and PLM in Oracle SCM Cloud: Implementation on August 12th.
Jeff will be back to give you a good look at what SCM Cloud onboarding has been like for our clients and share with you the best practices that will make all the difference in the world as to how successful your business will be in Oracle Cloud.
I hope to see you there.
¹ Agile PLM roadmap as of July 2021 and is subject to change.