Guide to Hiring an Oracle Consultant Company
When it’s time to implement new technology and roll out corresponding business processes, your enterprise’s implementation partners play a vital role in your success. In fact, deciding which partner to choose can be a make-or-break type of decision for your company, making it crucial to select precisely the right consulting firm for your business needs.
Why? Well, with the wrong partner, your implementation could be delayed, which could cause multiple problems for your business. It could also come with numerous cost overruns. Even worse, the implementation might even ultimately fail.
The right consultant, though, can guide you through the software selection process, making sure you select exactly what you need, with your technology of choice implemented in the most strategic way possible with the least amount of business interruption. Experienced consultants can also provide change management services, post-implementation services, and more to help companies maximize their technology investments, both now and in the future.
The question, then, becomes how to hire the right consultant. To help, we’ll share tips and tools so that you can see through the marketing hype to pick the right Oracle consulting team for your company.
As step one, you should create your own team that will ultimately select the consultant. You may decide to have experts from all levels of the organization on this team, from the executive level members who will look at the solution strategically to determine how it dovetails with enterprise goals to end users who will use these solutions as an integral part of their daily jobs. You might also want to get input from trusted vendors, suppliers, and others.
Your selection team can then determine your organizational needs, prioritizing and clarifying them. This is an ideal time to take a deep dive into your challenges and opportunities, and brainstorm what fully optimized enterprise operations that streamline processes and maximize ROI might look like. If you’re a member of a consulting-firm selection team, it’s important to focus on today, meaning what your enterprise needs for success now and in the near future, as well as what’s needed for the life of the software and for the company’s overall future growth.
The next step for the selection team is to create a list of potential Oracle consulting partners that you believe may be able to meet your implementation needs. This list can be made by gathering recommendations from colleagues, plus from Google searches, companies that you’ve heard about or read about, and more.
As you develop the list of qualifications that you have for your Oracle consulting company of choice, they should include, among others:
- whether they can meet all your business requirements
- their organizational culture and how well it meshes with your own
- their technical expertise
- their business expertise
- their cultural expertise
The list of potential partners that you create can be as long as you think it should be, with the next step likely to reduce it to a more manageable size.
Depth of Oracle Experience and Knowledge
While looking at your list, it’s important to distinguish between companies that offer Oracle consulting services among a menu of other offerings and those that have an Oracle-only focus. You can probably find out which is true about consultants you’re considering (Oracle among other options or Oracle-only) by reviewing their websites, at least as a step one.
Many times, with companies that don’t specialize in Oracle implementations, you may discover that their teams’ knowledge of applications isn’t necessarily in-depth enough for what your company needs. If so, eliminate them from your list of firms to consider.
Now let’s say that this process causes you to eliminate multiple consulting firms from your list, but you still have one or two that aren’t solely Oracle focused. The next step is to ensure that the consultants remaining on your list are highly experienced in the applications. You can verify that independently by going to the Oracle site to see if the company has obtained official Oracle Partner Network status, either Silver, Gold, or Platinum.
For example, CSS is a Platinum Oracle Partner. As you review the information found on Oracle’s website, you can also see that we’re an award-winning partner, maintaining Platinum and Cloud select status for Oracle solutions, including Cloud, on-premise Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions, Supply Chain Planning, Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) solutions, and industry platforms.
At CSS, we have an Oracle-only focus that allows us to transform your enterprise. We offer deep industry wisdom with in-depth application talent. If you’re ready to get started with Oracle consulting with CSS, contact us online today.
Importance of Case Studies
As another key step, be sure to review the companies remaining on your list to see what case studies they have to offer. As you review these case studies, make sure that each consultant still under consideration has already successfully handled implementations for companies of your size. If not, they may not be the best match for your company.
For example, a consulting firm may do highly effective work for small businesses, but does not have experience of any significance in enterprise-sized projects. If you have a large company, would you want yours to be the first for a consulting firm?
Also make sure that your consultant either specializes in your industry or has a proven history of successes across multiple industries. CSS provides Oracle consulting services in a broad range of industries, including:
- Engineering and Construction, including:
- Consumer Goods, including:
- Wine & Spirits
- Food & Beverage
- Perishables Distribution
- Consumer Durables
- FDA-Regulated Environment
- Industrial and Manufacturing, including:
- Aerospace Suppliers
- Automotive Tier 1 & 2
- Carpet & Flooring
- Construction Materials
- Heavy Equipment
- Home & Kitchen Appliances
- Industrial Machinery
- Lab Equipment
- Medical Devices & Surgical Supplies
- Oil & Gas Refining
- Paper, Plastic & Containers
- Yard Equipment
- Professional Services, including:
- Product Installation and Service Repair
To help, here are two of our case studies:
Skanska Civil, one of the largest construction and development companies in the United States, recognized a need to reduce costs in project forecasting and to manage scope creep. In response, we created an Advanced Job Forecasting (AJF) solution.
Results of this solution included:
- faster, more efficient JD Edwards EnterpriseOne 9.2 enhancements for this continuous delivery model
- accurate predictions of job costs
- accurate forecast history visibility
- accurate analysis of data
- clearly created Mayor’s Office of Contract Services (MOCS) that streamline usage
- creation of user-defined methodologies that met diverse forecasting requirements
As one more case study overview, here’s a global consumer goods company that’s been a household name and in business since 1947. This client distributes more than 500 products globally to retailers, helping to redefine how we live, work, and play.
Problems that were faced by this client included a need for demand planning statistical forecasting, along with that for S&OP process cycles. Its demand planning solution relied upon spreadsheets, with sales managers in charge of generating and maintaining a plan for demand.
As this company experienced rapid growth, it needed a much more robust demand planning business process, along with an enterprise application that generated baseline statistical forecasting.
In response, Oracle consultants at CSS led all aspects of the enterprise’s S&OP implementation, both technically and functionally, along with the organization’s strategic transformation.This solution allows the enterprise to continue growth objectives that scale alongside business growth, while offering it standardized demand planning processes, streamlined across all lines of business.
Your challenges and solutions may be quite different from Skanska’s or that of the global consumer goods company, or perhaps what you’ve just read really resonates with your executive team. What’s most important, though, is that the Oracle consulting companies you meet with carefully listen to what you need and can explain, in clear language, what solution makes sense for your enterprise, and why. This company should be able to explain how the recommended solution would solve your complex enterprise challenges and optimize your opportunities—and how this can be managed with the least amount of business interruption possible.
After you go through this process, your list of Oracle consultants to contact may now consist of, say, three companies.
Initial Contacts with Oracle Consultants
Each initial consultation is an opportunity for you to explain, at least at a high level, the challenges that your enterprise is facing and that you need your new technology and strategic implementation to solve—and then to ask, again at a high level, what solutions might make sense for your company.
At this point in the process, pay close attention to how closely the consultant is paying attention to you! How engaged are they in your conversation? Also watch to see if you’re being offered what seems like templated responses. No consultant can or even should roll out an in-depth plan during an initial consultation meeting, but they should be focused on discussing your unique circumstances.
As each consultant describes how its team would work with you, is the overall process clear to you? Does the timeline make sense? Does it fit within your goals? If not, do the reasons why more time might be needed seem logical? Do you understand what it may cost your company, in general, for your implementation, along with the potential for ROI?
When you ask questions of each consultant, are they answered clearly? And, in the instances when answers require research, does the consultant follow up on promises made in a timely manner?
Comprehensiveness of Services
As you talk to each potential Oracle consulting firm, it’s important to ensure that the company can manage all of the services that you need. For example, you may need recommendations about which modules your enterprise needs to accomplish goals, and then you’d need an implementation plan, the actual implementation, a post-implementation plan, and more.
For a streamlined solution that maximizes enterprises potential, it can be best to choose a consulting firm that can provide and coordinate all of the elements of your enterprise solution.
At CSS, for example, we offer a wide range of services, including:
- JD Edwards EnterpriseOne solutions: This application can integrate your entire business, with a holistic single-entry solution that manages and meets all your company needs, including:
- human capital
- customer relationship management
- project management
- supply chain planning
- supply chain logistics
- Oracle E-Business Suite solutions: CSS consultants implement this Oracle solution to maximize your technology investment, creating a holistic solution that tackles and solves your biggest challenges. As we shift your business processes to align with EBS modules, you can:
- make better decisions
- reduce costs
- improve performance
- extend the value of your software investment through continuing enhancements
- Enterprise Performance Management solutions: This type of solution, according to Oracle’s EPM Trends 2017, benefit users in these ways:
- staying current on technology/upgrades (75%)
- faster deployment (71%)
- improvement in service received (66%)
- improved flexibility (62%)
- access for more of our users (61%)
- better data governance (59%)
- more accurate numbers (50%)
- industry capabilities (48%)
- improved security (41%)
- Oracle Cloud ERP solutions: Ways in which you can empower your enterprise through the power of the Cloud and CSS consulting services include:
- Enterprise Performance Management (EPM)
- Project Portfolio Management (PPM)
- service Cloud
- Supplier Qualification Management (SQM)
- Supply Chain Planning
- Supply Chain Management solutions: Ways that these solutions can benefit your company include:
- increased forecast accuracy
- inventory level reduction
- constrained supply plans
- reduced planning cycle times
- increased visibility across the supply chain
- increased planner productivity
- Organizational Change Management solutions: Companies that incorporate organizational change management into their implementations can benefit significantly, with an average ROI of 140%. When change management is not incorporated, the likelihood of a project being delivered on time and on budget while still meeting business objectives is significantly lessened. At CSS, we have refined our organization change management (OCM) methodology for more than 23 years, integrating behavioral and neuro-psychology into our project delivery.
- CSS Managed Services: With managed services, your enterprise can focus on your business, while your Oracle consulting team focuses on your technology. At CSS, we provide instant access to the industry knowledge, strategy, and technical skills you need to run your business and take your technology to the next level. These services can also reduce company overhead by up to 30%.
Review Your List of Oracle Consulting Firms
After you’ve conducted high-level discussions with potential companies for your Oracle implementation, it’s time to prioritize them based on what you’ve learned. At this point, you may decide to remove most firms from your list because it’s become clear that they’re not the best choices for your enterprise needs.
Ask the one or two consulting firms at the top of your list for their references to find out what their clients have experienced.
Benefits of Choosing CSS
Our team has outstanding industry knowledge, with services provided by a dedicated team led by a senior consultant with an average of 20 years of Oracle experience. Because of our company’s low turnover, you’ll benefit by always working with the same people with incredible resource continuity. We also provide excellent customer service.
When we work with companies, we move your enterprise forward, making you:
- more agile
- more competitive
We provide holistic business solutions that are tailored to your enterprise needs. In other words, we go far beyond plug and play as we optimize and leverage out-of-the-box functionality.
CSS is a groundbreaking company, one of the very first consulting partners in the Oracle Partner Network to provide clients with integrated hybrid Cloud solutions—and, today, we continue to provide them with strategic, cutting-edge, carefully targeted solutions that meet their precise needs.
Partnering With CSS Oracle Consultants
At CSS, we define partnership as something much more than simply doing business today. Partnership is significantly more important than that, a commitment to a long-lasting, meaningful, and productive relationship—productive to us, our customers, and the Oracle community as a whole.
We continue to invest in our organization so that we can provide the absolute best Oracle consulting services possible, today, tomorrow, and for years to come. We also proudly partner with the Oracle User Communities, Quest and OAUG. Through this partnership, we educate users about Oracle solutions and enable exchanges that lead to technology advancement.
To discuss your enterprise’s unique needs, and to allow us to leverage the knowledge and commitment that few other partners worldwide can offer, we’d appreciate the opportunity to talk with you about your technology needs. You can find information about our team leaders here.
Please contact us online or call our professional Oracle consultants at 1-800-814-7705 today.