From Recruit to Retire – Oracle Approach To Human Capital Management (HCM)

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On 7 April 2016, as part of the Greyhound Research Analyst team, we had the opportunity to attend the Oracle CloudWorld 2016 in Mumbai, India. At the event we met some of Oracle’s global executives who highlighted the growing demand for MobileFirst, CloudFirst business applications.

They showcased Oracle’s company strategy, product and market readiness to cater to this demand. More specifically, the executives highlighted the need to modernise Human Capital Management (HCM) solutions. This was concurred by the fact that 18% of the 3000 event registrations were from Chief Human Resources Officers (CHROs).

At Greyhound Research we believe CHROs are not only re-looking at HCM but the broader set of workforce-centric technologies. We refer to these as the Workforce Empowerment Systems (WES).

War for talent is getting aggressive by the day.

To win this war, enterprises are looking at new ways of recruiting, on-boarding and retaining top talent. These changes are driving CHROs to refresh talent strategies and modernise WES, including HCM. Per a recent Greyhound Research study titled Emerging Markets CHRO Priorities 2016, 73% CHROs in the Asia Pacific Japan (APJ) region stated they are keen to explore new technologies in 2016.

In the 5000 enquiry calls that we take on every year, Greyhound Research advises its CHRO clients to consider Workforce Empowerment Systems with features such as Social Recruitment to attract new talent and better utilise their internal talent pool.

Oracle executives spoke to us about their two-pronged approach to latest CHRO priorities.

One, building Mobile and Cloud ready HCM modules from the grounds-up. For example, the Oracle Learning module has been built to deliver personalised learning across devices.

Two, acquiring Mobile and Cloud ready HCM solutions to build a strong end-to-end suite. For example, Oracle acquired Taleo Corporation in February 2012 thereby adding Talent Management to its suite.

As part of our ongoing tracking, at Greyhound Research we believe Oracle is not alone in this wave of acquisition to build suites. SAP acquired SuccessFactors in December 2011 thereby adding Performance, Goal and Learning Management to their suite.

At Greyhound Research we believe that enterprises are divided in their approach to adopt end-to-end HCM suites offered by a single vendor.

Per a recent Greyhound Research study covering 750+ CHROs from across the globe, 50% stated preference for a pearl string approach and pick best-of-breed modules. For instance, Hyatt Group of Hotels selected Cornerstone OnDemand for Talent Management in Americas and Saba’s Learning Management System (LMS) for delivery of training across devices.

As part of the same study we also found that 80% enterprises prefer to roll-out chosen modules at a time. For example, Polycab Wires adopted Oracle HCM Cloud and has chosen to initially roll-out Performance Management and Goal Management.

It’s time for a view from the trenches. Below are HCM trends discussed at the Oracle CloudWorld 2016 and Greyhound Research’s take on them.

Oracle Customers Are Increasingly Choosing Cloud Over On-Premise. Of the three IT Decision Makers present for the analyst briefing, all stated cost reduction as a key outcome. However none could quote actual metrics.

These companies are not alone. Of the 5000 enquiries that Greyhound Research addresses each year, over 80% express looming confusion on proving ROI from technology investments, including HCM. Greyhound Research believes the move from On-Premise to Cloud HCM should be planned on back of quantifiable business outcomes of which cost reduction may be one of many.

Increasing Uptake By Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). While this trend was called out, Oracle shared no specific statistics on customer acquisitions over the last FY.

Contrary to popular belief that only large enterprises need HCM, at Greyhound Research we believe SMEs can gain tremendously from these solutions. WES (including HCM) delivered on the back of Cloud and APIs can actualise benefits such as flexibility, scalability, easier integration with existing applications and delivery across devices. These gains are peculiarly important for SMEs that are stretched for IT budget and expertise to manage traditional systems. In essence, modern HCM solutions can enable SMEs to battle churn and attract talent.

Need for HR Analytics & Richer, Timely Reports Is Driving Enterprises To Modernise Existing or Adopt New HCM. While Oracle did not offer specifics of sales driven on back of this reason, this trend was highlighted with reasonable importance. Below are best practices we at Greyhound Research share with our Global, End-User clients to help derive value from HR Analytics.

Ask Questions Relevant To Enterprise Goals & Objectives. For Analytics to make a visible impact on employee engagement, CHROs must first ask the right questions and know the desired metrics and outcomes. Greyhound Research believes it’s important for CHROs to make this an inclusive exercise and onboard business functions like Marketing, Finance, IT among others. Broad areas under which metrics can be collected include Performance, Recruitment, Learning & Development.

Integrate Data Sources from Existing HCM Apps. As an enterprises’ employee engagement needs proliferate, HR teams often run siloed applications like Learning Management System (LMS), Performance Management System (PMS), Time Keeping System (TKS) among others. Before adding sophisticated Analytics, Greyhound Research advises CHROs to integrate these multiple data sets. This will help better manage employee data and understand employee behaviour.

 Identify Experts Who Understand HR, Your Enterprise Goals and Analytics. To make Analytics projects successful, Greyhound Research advises CHROs to identify a trained team of experts including internal stakeholders, subject matter experts, consultants and technology vendors.

In summary, we at Greyhound Research believe enterprises must focus on becoming an employer of choice. Getting there requires them to adopt a WorkforceFirst (and not a WorkplaceFirst) strategy – i.e. investing in technologies and processes that help deliver location and device agnostic experiences to the workforce.

Albeit to a few CHROs this transformation might seem far-fetched, it can well be turned into a reality. They must take a lead on this transformational project, on-board other business leaders and work in tandem with WES partners like Oracle, SAP, Ramco among others.

Research Analysts:

Sanchit Vir Gogia: Sanchit is the Chief Analyst & CEO of Greyhound Research, an Award-Winning, Global, Independent IT & Telecom Research & Advisory firm. He also serves as Chief Futurist, Founder & CEO of Greyhound Knowledge Group, a Global, Multi-Disciplinary Research & Advisory firm. Given his expertise and passion for Technology, Sanchit also doubles up as the CIO for Greyhound Knowledge Group companies and is building a technology-led Research & Advisory business. In his another avatar, Sanchit is an Advisor To The Board (for IT & Business decisions) of a US$100 Million+ organisation in the Metal Industry. To read more about him, click here.

Anshoo Nandwaani:  Anshoo serves as a Vice President and Principal Analyst with Greyhound Research, an Award-Winning, Global, Independent IT & Telecom Research & Advisory firm. She also serves as Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) of Greyhound Knowledge Group, a Global, Multi-Disciplinary Research & Advisory firm. In her current role, Anshoo leads the research agenda for The Empowered Workforce theme. As part of this theme, she studies the impact of vertical-specific processes and workforce-centric technologies on workforce lifecycle and overall business alignment. At Greyhound Research, we refer to this as the Workforce Empowerment Systems (WES). To read more about her, click here.

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Copyright © 2016 Greyhound Research. All rights reserved.


  1. Anshoo, thanks for sharing your thoughts. We would love to keep the conversation going and look forward to the next opportunity of sharing what we’re doing around HCM with you and the rest of the team at Greyhound Research..

    1. Jun, thank you for including Greyhound Research team in the briefing. Its great to know what Oracle is doing in the HCM space. Look forward to more updates from Oracle.

  2. We are a large player in Asia with over 10,000 employees globally. While we have HCM, our reports are delayed and don’t offer the insights that our BU leads need. Also, does social recruiting really work? Love to have your perspective on the topic.

    1. Paul, thanks for reaching out. You’ve raised some very interesting questions. Regarding your query about reports and insights, my suggestion will be to rethink HR Analytics. First and foremost, you must think about your report requirements – which BU lead needs what data and how frequently. Then, basis your vertical specific requirements, budgets and timelines, decide your approach – whether to modernise existing HCM apps and add a layer of Analytics on top OR replace with brand new HCM with built in Analytics.

      For your question about social recruiting, I firmly believe that for social recruitment to work, enterprises need to change internally. As enterprises start using social media tools to source and recruit talent and to engage employees, they can attract top talent and better utilise their internal talent pool.

      If you would like to talk in more detail, happy to connect with you one-on-one.

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