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Extend Oracle SaaS: Design New Experiences with Intelligent Automation

Quest Forum Digital Event: Emerging Tech

During Quest Forum Digital Event 2020: Emerging Technology Day, Srini Burli, Vice President of Product Management Digital Assistant and Integration at Oracle, presented how to extend Oracle SaaS (Software as a Service) and design new experiences with intelligent automation. Burli’s presentation covered how Oracle’s AI-powered, developer-friendly Cloud Platform enables Oracle SaaS extensibility while ensuring upgrades, and assimilates intelligent automation seamlessly.

Whether looking to add new capabilities to extend Oracle SaaS or create ways to support new business models, companies are under tremendous pressure to deliver innovation on top of modern ERP/SCM/HCM and CX systems. Oracle Cloud Platform’s intelligent automation capability combines the AI/ML power of Oracle Digital Assistant, Oracle Integration, Oracle Visual Builder, and Oracle Content and Experience to automate and design new experiences across and beyond Oracle SaaS.

Initiatives That Drive The Need for Integration

When looking at integration, hybrid is the new normal. Most organizations are asking themselves whether or not they should continue managing infrastructure in-house or allow an external provider to manage data centers. By outsourcing this data management to SaaS providers and cloud platforms, companies can focus on their core competencies.

Hybrid environments involve the integration of diverse vendors across cloud platforms, SaaS applications, mobility, packaged apps, custom apps, databases, and customer/partner/supplier management systems.

Users consider integration for several different reasons, as shown in the chart below.

Integration Options

Once a CEO decides to invest in integration, they should consider which integration options best fits their needs.

Oracle SOA Suite

One Oracle integration option is called SOA. Several top brands use Oracle SOA including Pfizer, GE Healthcare, Cisco Systems, LG, Subaru, GM, Charles Schwab, Clorox, HP, Marvel, Xerox, and more. The SOA platform has been used for over 7,000 customers with the scalability, reliability, and capabilities they need.

SOA is a business-critical investment, and many companies run their business based on SOA integrations connecting to Oracle and non-Oracle applications and services. SOA has served IT well for many years, but there are more modern approaches that need to be adopted whenever possible. The Oracle integration strategy is focused on modernization to help you protect SOA investment and provide a roadmap to digital transformation.

SOA customers may choose to move, improve, or innovate.

  • They may move some or all of legacy SOA to Cloud: Reduce data center footprint, consolidate SOA instances, lower CapEx, etc.
  • They may improve performance by reducing provisioning time, adding automation, purchasing on a subscription model, lowering OpEx, etc.
  • They may innovate by leveraging new capabilities such as Oracle Integration Cloud, Digital Assistants, Blockchain, AI/ML, etc.

The SOA Suite meets customer deployment preferences with on-premise or SOA on OCI.

How On-Prem and SOA on OCI Differ

  • On-premise
    • Next Version of SOA Suite (target is 2021)
    • Hybrid
    • Recipes for Kafka Integration
    • Other additional Hybrid improvements with OIC
    • Performance improvements
    • Selected Customer Enhancements
    • Certify SOA Suite for production workload deployments on Kubernetes
    • Early Access Started in March 2020
    • Targeting GA in Q3CY2020
    • Oracle Linux and bundled Kubernetes
    • Certification on Redhat Openshift – late H2Cy2020
  • SOA on OCI
    • Same SOA Suite, but on OCI
    • Leverages OCI Native features such as Compartments
    • License Type – BYOL available right now. UC coming in FY22
    • SOA on OCI Marketplace has the same domain types as SOACS
    • SOA/ServiceBus/B2B and MFT and planning to add BAM

Benefits of SOA on OCI

Benefits of SOA on OCI include:

  • Reduce costs
    • Reduce IT maintenance and administrative costs
    • No large investment in hardware and IT expertise is required
  • Create environments in the cloud
    • Quickly launch Oracle SOA Suite on Marketplace to create application environments in the cloud
    • No need to provision and configure your own servers
    • Move workloads to the cloud, from cloud to cloud, and from cloud to on-premises environments
  • Leverage OCI Features
    • Native OCI: Compartment selection, OCI Console
    • OCI Load Balancer: supported OOTB (during provisioning) instead of OTD
    • OCI KMS: available for password store

For a better picture of the Hybrid Cloud Integration Architecture, view the chart below.

Application Integration

Most people use SOA for app-to-app integration. Application integration for SaaS to on-prem connectivity provides support for Oracle and non-Oracle apps. There are 60+ prebuilt app adapters, prebuilt integration recipes, and embedded recommendations.

Adapter Library

An Adapter library allows users to connect with applications faster. It provides a business-centric view of APIs, automatic discovery of business objects, services, and events, and deployment choices for cloud and on-prem execution. Adapters are in the Oracle Cloud Marketplace.

Application Data Mapping

Application data mapping recommendations include auto mapping and transformation to connect applications faster and Machine Learning guidance in Oracle Integration based on community usage. Recommended mappings highlight proven and popular best practices. AI and ML-powered mapping is known to save up to 60 percent of development effort.

Integration Recipes

Integration recipes leverage application adapters and provide best practices to accelerate delivery. They are jointly developed with Oracle and third-party SaaS engineering. Upgrades are handled through pre-release testing and validation and lower the cost of compliance by adding enterprise IT controls to recipes for reuse.

Visual Process Automation

Visual process automation helps users save time through drag-and-drop design. Capabilities include digitizing your end-to-end business processes faster using prebuilt templates, accessing a visual designer for rules and embeddable mobile forms enable seamless UX, automating process steps by selecting prebuilt connections from a shared catalog, using connectors for Blockchain, IoT, Data, SaaS, and on-premises applications, and including human-in-the-loop RPA adapters to quickly remediate transaction issues.

RPA Robot Connectors

RPA robot connectors are prebuilt adapters to scale your digital workforce for enterprise processes. Oracle Integration and automation leverages computer vision for repetitive, manually intensive tasks, rapid UX prototyping while API is being built, and business applications without RESTful APIs. Human-in-the-loop robot adapters quickly remediate transaction issues and orchestrate end-to-end processes of human and digital worker tasks.

Visual Application Builder

Visual Application Builder is an elegant way of building mobile apps in a short period of time. Users benefit from cloud-native architecture, intuitive drag-and-drop design, continuous integration & delivery, securely enriched SaaS for digital processes, and extensibility via JavaScript, REST, HTML, CSS.

OCI API Gateway

OCI API Gateway offers REST APIs for OCI services, routing, rate-limiting, cross-origin resource sharing (CORS), custom authentication, metrics/logging, fully oracle managed, terraform, and regional OCI service.

Oracle Digital Assistant

Another new feature from OCI is the Digital Assistant/Chatbot. Oracle believes this is the next engagement channel for businesses to reach customers. Chatbots offer a natural conversation, no app necessary, 24/7/365 availability, several interaction channels, and immediate responsiveness.

Oracle Digital Assistant is meant for several activities as shown below.

Oracle offers integration boot camps and training at several levels for sales teams, architects, and developers. To learn more, check out the Quest Forum Digital Event presentation attached below.

Extend Oracle SaaS: Design New Experiences with Intelligent Automation