As Bruno Aziza talks about the Oracle Analytics Summit next week, the Oracle group VP’s comments are flooded with talk about the community, customer priorities, co-creation of value, feedback loops and showcasing customer innovation.
After a very successful inaugural face-to-face Summit last year, Aziza and his Oracle Analytics team are focused on weaving all of those outside-in concepts into a digital experience that will give even more people even more exposure to even more customer stories, technology insights, peer discussions and opportunities for interaction. And to ensure Oracle and its global analytics community can take full advantage of that ambitious agenda, Aziza has turned the single-event physical summit into a weeks-long series of online events and engagements.
“We’ve been looking at this as an opportunity to rethink how can we best help the community,” the high-energy Aziza said in a recent Zoom interview. “Some of our competitors canceled or even postponed their events. But we chose to look at the Summit as a community-centric event where we create a platform for the community to learn from each other and tell us how we’re doing, in addition to the Oracle Analytics team informing the community about our priorities.”
Along the way, Aziza said, he and his team began to imagine that the online experience could not only equal the previous year’s physical experience but provide even greater value to the community in a number of ways.
“We thought, you know what? The digital way of doing this, it actually is superior to the physical events. The physical event was going to accommodate just a few hundred of our best analytics leaders, but by going digital we now have thousands registered for this online experience,” Aziza said.
“Plus, the original event was going to be a 1-1/2-day experience where people had to physically come to the event. Now we’ve created a launch on May 12th and then every week for several weeks you’ll be able to come back into the experience, get more content, connect with us more, and give us more feedback.”
As a result, Aziza said, Oracle Analytics can “extend our commitment to the community. This commitment is not just one moment in time—it’s a movement that is continuous because we’re invested in their personal and professional success.”
Aziza said the lineup for the event looks like this:
- A keynote followed by a panel showcasing several great customers;
- Global participation from attendees, customers, partners, and Oracle experts;
- Approximately 60 best-practice sessions starring Oracle customers (“some of our competitors don’t have even one-tenth that many!” Aziza adds);
- Weekly tech-innovation sessions; and
- The ability to avoid travel that can be disruptive to ongoing responsibilities.
Big customer events have been a major part of the tech industry for some time, so I was intrigued by Aziza’s use of the term “movement” to describe what the Oracle Analytics team is rolling up into its Summit Series. What’s required to turn an event into a full-fledged movement?
“It’s a few things and the first is that in the past, it was probably fairly hard for the world to see how much innovation is occurring inside the Oracle Analytics community,” Aziza said. “For instance, you’ll get to hear from GE about blockchain and analytics and their fantastic use case with secure transactions across their very large distributed organization.
“You’ll hear from FedEx, which has figured out how to reduce the ETL process by a factor of 10X. You’ll hear from Schneider Electric about how they’re using Oracle Analytics in HR and getting 95% adoption. That’s incredible—95% in a space where adoption rates are usually between 10% and 50%!”
And those stories, Aziza said, must be told and led by the customers—rather than by Oracle itself.
“We’re providing a forum where customers can come together and share with the community and that means that, frankly, the best way that we can help is by getting out the way. Just give them the tools so they can talk to each other.”
And that concept of a true movement is coming to life in the Summit Online.
“Look at this movement I’m describing: last year in the keynote I think we had three customers—but this year we have six, and we follow that with a panel with three more and then we offer still more customer stories. It’s a place where your success is celebrated and your best practices are shared so other people can succeed as well.”
And that customer success is something that Aziza wants Oracle Analytics to evangelize and optimize not only during the Summit Series but throughout the year and in everything the team does.
“We’re organizing eight Idea Lab meetings where customers give us feedback and share their ideas for improving the product. Two of those are going to be what we call the ‘open Idea Lab’ where anyone in the community can join. So we’re really kind of opening the gate to say, look, the success of this industry, if you will, is a representation of where the industry is going,” Aziza said.
“It really depends on the community co-creating with us—that’s what’s at stake.
“And if I look at year-over-year, we have five times the amount of opportunities for them to contribute. We have five times the amount of customer stories. We have five times the amount of tech innovations.
“And this is just the beginning! It’s really kind of a flywheel so that I believe next year we’ll have 10 times more than we have this year.”
This article is brought to you by Oracle.