Quest had the chance to speak with Matthew Stronczek, the Application Administrator at Port of Portland, about the new features they are implementing with JD Edwards 9.2.
- Port of Portland was able to execute their 9.2 upgrade without any outside assistance.
- EnterpriseOne Pages have been a big hit at Port of Portland because of the ease of navigation for infrequent JD Edwards users and the ability to bring JDE applications, other web applications, and documents in SharePoint or network shares into one place within JDE.
- Port of Portland is looking to implement more UX One components in the near future.
About Port of Portland
The Port of Portland is responsible for overseeing three airports, including Portland International Airport, four marine terminals and five business parks within Portland. They are responsible for aspects like airport concessions, industrial manufacturing, and container shipping. As Oregon’s largest port authority, Port of Portland ships over 11 million tons of cargo a year and partners with businesses and shippers in the region to develop custom shipping solutions. Their business parks house more than 400 companies, including warehouses, manufacturers and distributors for clothing and shoes, tires, household goods and food. Ultimately, the goal is to create jobs and boost prosperity in the Portland area.
Port of Portland has been on JD Edwards for over 20 years. They implemented 8.0 as the core financial system back in 2004. By 2007, they had implemented HCM, Payroll, Benefits, and Employee Maintenance. They eventually upgraded to 8.12, 9.1 and 9.2 over the years. Now, they have established a three-year application upgrade cycle. Port of Portland is currently on Tools 184.108.40.206.
Did you use an implementation partner when upgrading to 9.2?
Back when we upgraded to 8.0, we had a large implementation on-site team, but we progressively took on more of the work in-house during our 8.12 and 9.1 upgrades as we built out our JDE upgrade project plan. Our 9.2 implementation was done entirely in-house. The implementation for 8.12 was pretty aggressive because the team wanted it done in a short time frame, which didn’t work well for us. The strategy got better with the 9.1 and 9.2 implementations, partly because we could better identify what changes were happening with the new release. The Oracle Impact Analysis Report showed us what was changing between the current and new release, and that helped us prepare both ourselves and our users for what was changing.
What applications are you using?
For HR, we’re currently using Payroll, Benefits, Employee Maintenance and Year End reporting. Our employees use Employee/Manager Self-Service for Benefits Open Enrollment to define Auto Deposit Instructions. Just last month, we implemented self-identification of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. Last year, we implemented an online pay statement application that allows employees to access their pay statements from the last two years on their mobile devices or home computers.
For Finance, we are using General Ledger, Address Book, Accounts Receivable, parts of Properties, a little bit of Sales Order, Budget and Project Grant Accounting, and just enough of Accounts Payable to print AP checks.
We also have several third-party applications that interact with JD Edwards. For example, we use Longview for budgeting, Avantis for maintenance and purchasing applications, and we have a few small HR applications that pull data out of JD Edwards but don’t push data into it.
What new features are you enjoying in 9.2?
With 9.2, we’ve been looking at expanding UDOs beyond what we are already using. We also have a third-party support team that is working on installing AIS Server for us so we can get started using Orchestrator, which we’re very excited about. We’re looking at utilizing at least the UX One Pages and Components as well.
One feature we currently use a lot is the EnterpriseOne Pages. We’ve been building and using them for about five years now, and we use them a lot to build self-service pages for our users. Some of our pages include a Benefits Open Enrollment page, an HR Information Center page, an IDT Accounting page, an AR Lockbox page, and an AP Check Printing page. We can include links to external sites or documents, brand the pages with personalized pictures and colors, add custom icons, build links that send emails when you click them, embed employee portals, and more.
Our business users love the EnterpriseOne Pages and are involved in their design. Our HR department especially enjoys them and has really embraced using them.
Are you planning to use any other features in 9.2 that you haven’t already implemented?
We dipped our toe into CafeOne earlier, but we’re having trouble finding good use cases for it to show the business users. We also faced an issue of not being able to do multiple screen updates, but we are looking at the pop-out feature as a workaround. It’s definitely something that we’re still learning about and asking questions about. We are in the process of testing our first CafeOne Layout and hope to move it to Production soon, so we’ll see!
We’ve also looked at implementing UX One Pages and components in the future. I’m not sure if we’ll utilize the UX One Roles, but we’re looking for ways that we can use the UX One Pages’ components—like the Watchlists and dashboards—within our business.
Are your users utilizing personalizations?
We’ve used some of the older features like custom grids and custom queries for several years, but we’re starting to partner with a small group of business users to look at using the new UDO options.
Are you trying to stay code current?
We have been on a three-year application upgrade cycle, and this spring would be when we would normally implement a new application version. We are looking to go code current instead. Being code current hasn’t been a top priority for us. We have an annual Tools Upgrade cycle, which we think adds the most business benefit for us due to Oracle’s focus on UX One.
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