Mastering the Oracle HCM Post-Go-Live Process: A Guide to Success
With over 400 Oracle cloud application implementations, Apps Associates has seen what makes an implementation go well and the strategies and considerations specific to HCM that can be executed before and after a system go-live. Taking this post-go-live governance strategy forward while using, enhancing, and maintaining a new system will most assuredly provide the value anticipated at the start of the project.
An Oracle HCM Cloud system governance model differs from an on-premise HR governance model in several ways. Firstly, in an Oracle HCM Cloud system, the infrastructure and software are hosted and managed by Oracle, whereas the organization maintains and operates the HR system internally in an on-premise model. Secondly, the Oracle HCM Cloud system offers greater scalability and flexibility as it can quickly adapt to changing business needs and accommodate growth. Thirdly, in terms of maintenance and upgrades, Oracle HCM Cloud systems receive regular updates and patches automatically, relieving organizations from the burden of managing these tasks themselves. Lastly, the Oracle HCM Cloud system provides enhanced security measures, including advanced data encryption and robust access controls, to protect sensitive employee information. On-premise models require organizations to establish and maintain their own security measures, which can be resource-intensive and challenging to keep up with evolving threats.
This article outlines key considerations to help you get the most value from your Oracle HCM Cloud system purchases. By implementing a robust post-go-live governance model, you can efficiently navigate the transition, optimize system usage, and align the Oracle HCM Cloud system with its organizational goals, ultimately enhancing productivity and employee satisfaction.
Criticality of Governance
To contrast a strong post-go-live approach, let us quickly review some of the consequences of not implementing a robust governance strategy model:
- Inefficient Processes: Organizations may struggle to establish standardized and efficient HR processes without a robust governance model. The absence of clear guidelines and controls can result in ad-hoc decision-making, inconsistent data entry, and inefficient workflows. This can lead to increased manual effort, errors, and delays in HR operations.
- Data Integrity Issues: Poor governance can contribute to data integrity problems. Without proper controls and oversight, data quality may deteriorate over time. Inaccurate or incomplete employee information can impact critical HR functions such as payroll, benefits administration, and compliance reporting. Data discrepancies can also lead to a lack of trust in the system and hinder effective decision-making.
- Security and Compliance Risks: Inadequate governance increases the likelihood of security breaches and non-compliance with data protection regulations. Without appropriate access controls, segregation of duties, and monitoring mechanisms, sensitive employee data may be at risk of unauthorized access or misuse.
- Limited User Adoption: A weak post-go-live governance approach can result in low user adoption and engagement. Users may encounter difficulties navigating the system, finding relevant information, or executing tasks efficiently. This can lead to frustration, resistance to change, and decreased productivity. Without proper governance, training, and support, users may resort to workarounds or rely on manual processes, undermining the benefits of the Oracle HCM Cloud system.
- Missed Opportunities for Optimization: A strong post-go-live governance provides a framework for continuous improvement and optimization of the Oracle HCM Cloud system. Without it, organizations may fail to identify and address system issues, user feedback, or changing business requirements.
- Higher Total Cost of Ownership: Insufficient governance can increase maintenance and support costs over time. Inefficient processes, data integrity issues, and security breaches require additional resources.
To assist you in achieving a robust post-go-live Governance model goal, Apps Associates has compiled a list of recommendations to help you make the most of your Oracle product investment.
Within a cloud-based solution, such as Oracle HCM Cloud, many governing responsibilities are transitioned to more business-focused resources, such as a business administrator and business analyst. During the project’s implementation phase, the roles and responsibilities for strong post-go-live governance can be determined by engaging the client’s functional and IT teams. This collaboration ensures that the client’s specific business requirements are aligned with the technical capabilities of the new cloud system. A comprehensive understanding of the system’s functionalities and support mechanisms can be established by involving key stakeholders from both teams, enabling efficient coordination and practical support for the post-go-live phase.
The Governance Model we propose aligns with this consideration and continually tries to support delineating the responsibilities between the various groups and roles.
The below list outlines some general considerations which should be started during implementation as you develop a solid post-go-live plan:
- Collaboration: During the project’s implementation phase, engaging your functional and IT teams can determine the roles and responsibilities for strong post-go-live governance. This collaboration ensures that specific business requirements are aligned with the technical capabilities of the new cloud system. A comprehensive understanding of the system’s functionalities and support mechanisms can be established by involving key stakeholders from both teams, enabling efficient coordination and practical support for the post-go-live phase.
- Establish a governance committee: Create a committee with key stakeholders from various departments, including HR, IT, finance, and operations. This committee should regularly discuss system performance, user feedback, and issues.
- Conduct Regular Audits: Regular audits of your Oracle HCM Cloud system can help you identify and address any issues before they become significant problems. We recommend conducting quarterly or bi-annual audits to ensure your system runs efficiently and effectively.
- Plan for Quarterly Releases: Oracle Cloud follows a Quarterly Release model; this quarterly release may happen during the implementation phase. Apps Associates will demonstrate and educate with a leading practice methodology that the client can later utilize in the post-go-live governance of their system. This model ensures that customers can access the latest innovations and improvements in Oracle HCM Cloud applications. To ensure a smooth implementation and minimize any potential disruptions, it is essential to have a regression strategy in place. This strategy includes thoroughly testing existing business processes against the new release, identifying potential issues or conflicts, and establishing a governance model to manage future updates and maintain process clarity. A strong and regimented adherence to the configuration documentation used during the implementation phase will allow the client to track and audit future post-go-live changes.
- HR Initiatives and Annual Processes: With Oracle HCM Quarterly releases, you have an opportunity to evaluate enhancements that can inform your HR initiatives. With roadmaps published in advance, you are more equipped than ever to strategize on optimization and process enhancements and fold those considerations into your Annual Process Planning. This model ensures that customers can access the latest innovations and improvements in Oracle HCM Cloud applications and ensure you have the resources and potential support needed to execute annual tasks seamlessly.
- Change Management: During implementation, you can engage with your organization and develop Change Management and Training tools that will support Oracle HCM for years down the line. Apps Associates offer our clients a full array of Change Management & Training services. Our Apps Associates’ Change Management team uses research-based, industry-leading strategies and tools to develop and deliver customized services. Partnering with businesses to create an agile and resilient workforce ready and equipped to embrace and adopt change. It is essential to establish a change management process early on which outlines how changes will impact the organization and can best be implemented, tested, and approved to avoid any disruptions or issues. In addition, configuration and project implementation documents will allow your internal change management team to stay in lockstep with the department’s functional and IT resources so that the employee user base will receive and adopt new functionality and processes effectively.
- Assign and Align System Administrators: The assignment of system administrators with the knowledge and skills to manage your Oracle HCM Cloud system effectively is critical. They should maintain the system, implement changes, and support users. These administrators should understand the HR process they help with, like talent management, recruiting, benefits, etc., and develop close relationships with those corporate leaders and subject matter experts in those various disciplines. Apps Associates strongly recommends that the administrators be involved in the implementation project from the beginning and be part of all the design and requirement sessions, including the testing cycles and the go-live process. As the old saying goes, teaching a person to fish is better than giving them a fish. The strength of the Apps Associates implementation methodology is that it is entirely designed to help our clients be independent and self-sustaining long after the go-live period. However, Apps Associates also has a strong Managed Services team if you require additional support and resources to manage the new system post-go live.
- Implement User Training Programs: To ensure that your system is being used to its full potential, it is essential to provide regular training. This will help you stay updated with the latest system features and functionality and ensure they use the system most effectively. A training and adoption strategy is best started during implementation, and below are a few resources to help support your training initiatives.
- Oracle University is an excellent resource for your team members; subscriptions are available through Oracle.
- Oracle Guided Learning (OGL) – is an Enterprise cloud platform that layers on top of your Oracle solution and supports the creation of personalized, guided, and contextual user onboarding visualizations – to simplify and accelerate your adoption of web-based applications. It is updated quarterly in alignment with your system’s quarterly releases.
- Oracle Guided Journeys is another tool to provide in-system guidance such as tutorials, company policies, and best practices in the context of an HCM flow using guided journey tasks.
- Audit System Security:Regularly reviewing your system security can help you identify any vulnerabilities or security risks. You should conduct regular security reviews and implement any necessary security patches or updates to ensure your system is secure. It is essential also to monitor and adjust user role security to match the latest new features available in your application
By planning and implementing these post-go-live system governance practices, you can ensure that your Oracle HCM Cloud system continues to meet your business needs and remains efficient and effective.
Initiating these principles and considerations in conjunction with Apps Associates implementation tools and methodology will provide you with a structured and disciplined approach to your post-go live governance strategy. In addition, road mapping your future footprint with Oracle HCM products, leveraging analytics, and keeping your system up to date, will help you streamline your Human Resource processes and improve your overall HR operations. With 20 years in the Business as an Oracle Platinum Partner and over 400+ Oracle Cloud implementations, our intellectual property (IP) and project methods will help set you up for success well beyond the initial Go-Live. We can help you determine and deliver your organization’s needs through our well-rounded offerings of industry experts. If you have any questions or would like additional support, please do not hesitate to contact us at Apps Associates for further assistance in maximizing your Oracle HCM Cloud investment.
This blog was a collaboration between Jim Fox, Managing Principal Consultant, Oracle Services Applications and Brandi Duy, Practice Director, HCM.