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How to Properly Handle an Oracle EBS Upgrade

How to Properly Handle an Oracle EBS Upgrade

November 17, 2022
Sohaib Zaidi

If you’re an Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) customer still on release 12.1, it’s critical to upgrade to release 12.2.0 because Oracle has ended Premier Support service for EBS 12.1. Without Premier Support, your enterprise is missing out on many new Oracle EBS features, and maintaining an EBS system without Oracle’s support is a huge operational risk. Simply put, updating to the latest version is imperative.

In this post, we'll discuss the risks enterprises take when they choose to stay on Oracle 12.1 as well as the benefits of upgrading to 12.2. We also provide an Oracle EBS upgrade testing plan and discuss how automation makes the months-long upgrade from 12.1 to 12.2 a smooth transition. Finally, we'll learn how Opkey’s automation platform provides the best QA framework for upgrade testing.

Download the E-book: Testing Strategy Guide for Upgrading to Oracle EBS 12.2

What are the risks of staying on Oracle EBS 12.1?

Upgrading to EBS version 12.2 may seem like a big undertaking, and quite honestly, it is. However, staying on version 12.1 puts you at greater business risk when it comes to data and system performance,  especially without the safety net of Oracle’s Premier Support.

Here are some of the main risks involved in staying on EBS 12.1:

  • Staying on 12.1 may put Oracle EBS customers out of regulatory compliance, which can cost $9.4 million, according to the Ponemon Institute.
  • No new security patches for your EBS environment increases your vulnerability to data breaches. According to IBM, the average cost of a data breach is $4.24 million.
  • You may experience daily business operations interruptions due to poor performance from old software.
  • Applications may run slowly due to missing patches.
  • Downtime is common without regular EBS updates. The average hourly downtime cost ranges from $300,000-$400,000 according to a Statista survey.

What are the benefits of upgrading to Oracle EBS 12.2?

Oracle has confirmed Premier Support for EBS 12.2 until at least 2031. This means only this on-premise version of Oracle business suite products will continue to receive new enhancements. Premier Support also provides enterprises with the following:

  • New updates, fixes, security alerts, data fixes, and critical patch updates
  • New tax, legal, and regulatory updates
  • Certification with new third-party products and versions
  • Certification with new Oracle products

Ease the pressure of risky Oracle EBS upgrades with a testing plan

Preparation is key to handling the pressure of any upgrade. Proper planning can minimize your business risks and help you complete EBS upgrade testing within the expected timeline. Here are a few  best practices for creating a test plan:

  • Establish a project timeline: The average EBS upgrade takes one to two quarters for most enterprises. A robust testing plan should allocate 30-40% of an enterprise’s overall project timeline for preparing test scenarios.
  • Confirm CEMLI compliance for testing methods: A detailed CEMLI assessment highlights what will not work, how to fix it, and what areas you need to test for all customizations, modifications and extensions.
  • Perform an EBS functional evaluation: It’s a best practice to upgrade your database prior to the E-business suite upgrade. At a minimum, databases need to be at version to receive updates for security, performance, and stability before making the upgrade to 12.2.
  • Define what to test: Finding a method to test more functionality in a limited timeline is one of the biggest testing challenges. You’ll want to test your critical processes and make sure the ERP functions as users expect it to.
  • Define what to fix: Changes in customizations and integrations can introduce defects into your current EBS version. Review these pain points and errors to select a few important issues to fix from your current ERP system in your upgrade project.
  • Perform end-to-end testing: End-to-end process review ensures minimal business disruptions after the upgrade. Definitely focus on processes that involve multiple applications or integrations so there is no broken functionality.

Read our blog: Migrating to Oracle Cloud ERP vs. Upgrading Oracle EBS

Fast-tracking your Oracle EBS upgrade with Opkey’s automation platform

The scope of EBS upgrades are often underestimated due to planning inaccuracies and limited availability of data. According to McKinsey, half of all large IT projects like EBS upgrades don’t achieve their desired ROI. On average, these projects run 45% over budget and 70% over time. Opkey keeps your upgrade costs low and timelines short through the innovative use of automation.

Most test automation tools can run tests via computers, but Opkey’s platform goes a step further by using AI to streamline test discovery, test creation and test maintenance. The best part of Opkey’s platform is that it’s code-free and can be used by any non-technical EBS user.

Opkey’s test automation platform offers top tier test automation features for EBS upgrades:

  • No-code test creation: Opkey’s no code test automation leverages AI and machine learning to convert manual test cases into automated ones with the click of a button. No coding required.
  • Pre-built accelerators: Instead of writing tests from scratch, Opkey offers users more than 2,000 pre-built, automated test scripts for testing key EBS application transactions.This greatly increases test speed.
  • Upgrade impact assessment: There are many changes between EBS 12.1 & 12.2. Opkey's impact analysis provides a complete view of the most impacted business flows & customizations to guide test plan development and ensure priority testing of the most important processes.
  • End-to-end-testing: Opkey supports 12+ packaged applications and 150+ technologies. Every business process can be fully tested when data moves to different applications or plugins, to prevent broken processes.
  • CEMIL retrofit: Opkey’s drag-and-drop process builder allows EBS users to retrofit their test cases with minimal effort, and once again, no coding is required.
  • Automatic test data management: Opkey automatically provides the right test data for the right tests, each time.
  • Smart tracking: Opkey’s simple dashboards enable EBS users to keep track of every aspect of testing in one location.

With no Premier Support for EBS version 12.1, you are taking on a huge risk by not upgrading to version 12.2. To ensure a successful upgrade, you should develop a testing plan that intelligently analyzes your current application and any functionalities that can be improved. You’ll also need to decide which business processes need the most testing and prioritize all your tests from start to finish.

With Opkey’s sophisticated AI and test automation solutions, you can complete a seamless EBS upgrade on-time, under-budget, and without any mistakes carrying over into production.

Oacle EBS 12.2.11 Testing Guide | Opkey
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