PeopleSoft release cost-cutting suite

PeopleSoft release cost-cutting suite

By Stuart Finlayson

Enterprise application software provider PeopleSoft has announced a range of new tools and technologies which, according to the vendor, are designed to "reduce implementation time, increase productivity and lower IT administration costs."

Described by PeopleSoft as the "Total Ownership Experience," it includes four new tools to automate software configuration, updates and performance tuning. The company also announced six new Process Integration Packs for packaged business process integration to Oracle and SAP back office systems, as well as a new interface that provides task-oriented navigation.

Barry Wilderman, senior vice president and research director, enterprise application strategies at analyst group Meta, said the new releases by PeopleSoft are a reflection on how the market is evolving.

"Most software vendors have spent too little time addressing the people-intensive tasks of owning enterprise software. A few years back, companies focused on detailed feature checklists from software vendors, but the market has shifted. Today, companies are more concerned with what the vendor has done to lower the total cost of implementing and maintaining its software."

PeopleSoft emphasised the importance of the tools in automating a number of processes that are normally people-intensive by pointing to a recent study by Forrester Research ("What ERP Projects Really Cost," July 2003) which found that 65 percent of the total cost of and ERP implementation is swallowed up by labour costs.

"We are committed to providing our customers with a superior ownership experience," said Ram Gupta, PeopleSoft executive vice president for Products and Technology. "The new technology we announced today will drive down costs, increase effectiveness and drive a faster time to benefit for PeopleSoft customers."

Meanwhile, the war of words between PeopleSoft CEO Craig Conway and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison over Oracle's hostile takeover bid for PeopleSoft inspired a bit of slapstick yesterday when Conway appeared at PeopleSoft's customer conference in California together with his dog Abbey, both of whom were decked out in bulletproof vests.

According to a report in CNET, the unusual attire was worn in response to a statement made by Ellison in July in which he said that if he had a gun with only one bullet, he'd choose Conway over his labrador companion.

After showing a video of Ellison making the statement, Conway and his dog appeared in the vests, with Conway remarking: "Abbey and I decided we weren't taking any chances."

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