Oracle SOA Suite Review

We use it to interface between JD Edwards and the database, as well as to legacy systems.

Valuable Features

We use it as middleware to interface between our financial application, which is JD Edwards, and the database, as well as to legacy systems. It serves a critical functionality of linking the applications together to provide us the data we need.

Room for Improvement

The error reporting can be improved. When you get an email saying that something has gone wrong or something is not complete, it isn't very intuitive. It has to go to a very technical person to be able to tell you what actually the error is and what you need to know about it.

Use of Solution

The company has been using the product for about two years.

Stability Issues

I would say it is and is not a stable solution, not because of a fault in the product, but because we have a combination of legacy systems and also modern ERP systems. The challenge has been with information moving between the interfaces. When you send information, it's a black box. You don't get a confirmation that information has come back, so it's asynchronous, whereas our applications are synchronous. The ongoing challenge is knowing whether your data been sent completely and accurately. We've had to work to build very good reporting at least. The biggest challenge is getting useful information to troubleshoot when something goes wrong.

Scalability Issues

So far, it has been a scalable solution. The next few years will be the true test of it, but so far, it has been a scalable solution.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Because it's a transformation project program over several years, we have internal and external support. Resources are from Accenture, the service integrator, working with Oracle Managed Cloud Services and ADM. So far, so good.

Initial Setup

I wasn't directly involved in the setup. Nonetheless, I would say it's as straightforward as it can be considering our environment.

Other Advice

I think about process, not solutions. Determine what you really want to do first. Then, once you have clearly determined what you want to do, determine your requirements. Once you have the requirements, then go find the solution that meets those requirements. Rather than thinking of the solution and trying to look backwards; does it fit? Know what you really want and then go find the product. You will rarely find a product that gives you 100%, but you might find one that gives you 80% of what you need, so determine what you can live with and what you can't live without.

When I’m selecting a vendor to work with, I don’t want any bait and switch, in the sense of promise and delivery. The space that we are in, that's the biggest challenge. Sales people always get a bad rep as they offer promises and then when the product is delivered, they say something like, "The product doesn't do that or you need to buy something else to get that." I’m looking for simple clarity on what you're delivering, what it can and cannot do. That upfront clarity and honesty is what I look for the most.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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