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PeopleSoft Now! Episode Four: Chatbots and Lease Accounting Standards

PeopleSoft-Now

In PeopleSoft Now! episode four, Rebekah Jackson, Vice President of Product Management, discussed PeopleSoft’s first chatbot and the technology that enables it with Robbin Velayedam, Senior Director of HCM Product Management, and Matthew Haavisto, Senior Principal Product Strategist for PeopleTools. Jackson also talked with Loida Chez about the response of PeopleSoft’s Lease Accounting to FASB and GASB Accounting Standards changes. Jackson started the episode with a recap of RECONNECT 19.

RECONNECT 19 + Oracle OpenWorld

RECONNECT 19 took place from July 16-18, 2019 in Rosemont, Illinois. This event, hosted by the Quest Oracle Community, was bigger and better than ever. From education, to customer stories, to Oracle product deep-dive sessions and roadmaps, attendees learned about all of the latest topics within PeopleSoft.

In addition to RECONNECT, PeopleSoft customers also have the chance to learn and network with peers, partners, and Oracle at the upcoming Oracle OpenWorld conference taking place September 16-18, 2019 in San Francisco, California at the Moscone Center. This is Oracle’s marquee conference event, and there is a whole slate of PeopleSoft sessions planned for you to enjoy. In addition to the PeopleSoft sessions, you can also take advantage of the entire suite of Oracle sessions and applications to learn about the ways that you can extend the value of your PeopleSoft solution.

PeopleSoft’s First Chatbot for Absence Management

Robbin Velayedam and Matthew Haavisto joined PeopleSoft Now! episode four to discuss PeopleSoft’s first chatbot, the technology behind it, and the integration framework.

Robbin-and-Matthew

This chatbot, the Absence Assistant, was shipped in PeopleSoft HCM Image 31. The chatbot allows employees to use a chat interface in order to look up how much accrued time they have for vacation or sick leave, forecast that time out into the future, request time off, cancel requests, lookup requests they’ve made in the past, and more. This way, they stay informed and can easily take action all in one place.

At the same time that this chatbot was delivered, PeopleSoft also delivered the PeopleSoft Chatbot Integration Framework (PCIF). This framework enables PeopleSoft to communicate with the Oracle Digital Assistant (ODA) to be able to provide the chat services to PeopleSoft. It primarily provides the communication between PeopleSoft and ODA, but it also provides things like security and authentication, so it works effectively with a PeopleSoft application.

The PCIF is available now for PeopleSoft HCM customers and will be coming in the next shipped images for all other product areas. PCIF is delivered through PeopleTools and through common frameworks in the application, so when customers have PeopleTools and the applications, they have everything they need, along with ODA, to run chatbots. So, if a customer decides to use the Absence Management chatbot, they are also using PCIF. This framework can also be used to extend or modify what is delivered.

Velayedam explained that ODA is a separate application within Oracle, and it has a drag and drop user interface that allows you to build out chatbots yourself or update the chatbots that Oracle delivers. ODA is also the application that you will use to update the actual conversation that happens between the employee and PeopleSoft, so if you have certain terminologies that your organization uses, that is something that you would want to put into ODA’s vocabulary in order to recognize that term and map it to an intent that leads to an action that the employee or the chatbot can take.

The Oracle Digital Assistant is available through subscription. It’s a Platform as a Service (PaaS) subscription from Oracle, so a customer will need to acquire that license and the subscription. To do so, customers will need to work with their technical sales representative, not their application sales representative. Once that is done, they can then use ODA with the frameworks that Velayedam and Haavisto discussed.

The chatbot itself is part of the license that customers have with PeopleSoft and is representative of the ongoing investment that the PeopleSoft team is making in the application. Customers can download it and start using it right away as long as they have PeopleTools 8.57.07, the application image that supports chatbots (HCM Image 31 in this case), and an ODA license.

The pair expressed that chatbots are a great way to keep employees informed and involved, and there are more chatbots on the roadmap for the future of PeopleSoft.

To learn more about the PeopleSoft Chatbot Integration Framework (PCIF), register for Oracle’s own Senthil Kumaran’s webinar that is part of PeopleSoft Global Day.

PeopleSoft Lease Accounting Standards

Loida Chez, Director of FMS/ESA Product Management, joined PeopleSoft Now! episode four to discuss lease accounting standards and asset management.

Loida-Chez-1

If you’ve been following along over the last few years, you’ve noticed that PeopleSoft has developed a tremendous among of new functionality and delivered new capabilities in the asset management and lease accounting product areas. This was done in order to respond to lease accounting guidance and make those products robust so they can serve a whole range of use cases that customers have.

Chez explained that this project started when the discussion paper was first introduced in 2009. The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) started a project to bring more visibility to leases. With that, PeopleSoft wanted to be able to bring functionality to its customer base in order to capture that lease data that they needed for the new leasing guidance.

Most recently, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board released Statement No. 87, which is fairly consistent with FASB and IASB guidance in that, at commencement, you are putting a lease obligation in a right of use asset on the balance sheet. With that, PeopleSoft felt that they needed to introduce some additional enhancements to be able to capture that information.

In order to do so, PeopleSoft introduced new functionality for the accounting exemption – your short-term leases, as well as for those contracts that transfer ownership at the end of the lease term. This helps round out all of the capabilities that PeopleSoft has delivered for these regulations.

Chez explained that PeopleSoft customers who are looking to comply with these regulations need to get current on the latest image. FSCM Image 31 and FSCM Image 32 both include the latest key enhancements for GASB customers.

In addition to the updates for lease accounting standards, Chez covered some additional functionality within PeopleSoft that help with lease accounting and asset management.

Within Asset Management and Lease Administration, there is the core accounting that is through the shared product functionality, which was released in Image 27. That is when asset management customers gained insight and visibility into all of those enhancements that PeopleSoft was building for the new leasing guidance.

The functionality that has been built out is for lessee agreements only – payables leases. Any customer who has either property leases or equipment leases would be able to advantage of this functionality by being able to track financial terms. If they have the Lease Administration license, they can go beyond the core accounting and they can track percent rents, do all of their clauses, and have all of the options instead of only the ones that are reasonably certain, which are part of that liability.

In addition to discussing all of the new functionality, Chez also announced the plans to integrate with Oracle’s Internet of Things (IoT) Asset Monitoring Cloud. This product allows you to keep track of your assets – indoor, outdoor, asset health, utilization, location, etc. That sensor data can be used to create incidents within IoT, which would then integrate into Maintenance Management per condition-based maintenance. Chez explained that this integration transforms maintenance from preventative to predictive.

To learn more about any of the topics discussed in PeopleSoft Now! episode four, check out the full video and additional Quest resources attached below. You can also find helpful information on here.

Additional Resources

To learn from the experiences of your peers within the Quest Oracle Community, check out the PeopleSoft Customer Stories page that houses 30+ PeopleSoft customer stories about Selective Adoption, user experience, PeopleSoft in the Cloud, PeopleSoft Human Capital Management, PeopleSoft Enterprise Resource Planning, and PeopleSoft tools and technology!

COLLABORATE 20 will take place April 19-23, 2020 at the Mandala Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, NV! Call for Presentations is now open. Don’t miss your chance to share your stories, insights, and advice with the Quest Oracle Community! Submit an abstract by October 11, 2019, to be considered to be a speaker at the conference.

If you’re looking for more PeopleSoft content, join us next year at RECONNECT 20, the premier deep-dive PeopleSoft focused event of the year! The event will take place July 21-23, 2020 in St. Louis, Missouri. Keep an eye out for more information on this event!