We have been living through strange, challenging times and the focus for many organisations over the past 18 months or so has primarily been getting through each day. In the wake of the COVID-19 storm, organisations around the world battened down the hatches. Some have had to make difficult decisions, and many haven’t been looking to the future because of its uncertainty.
Now, though, some of the initiatives and plans that were discussed in the pre-COVID days, or even concepts that emerged during the pandemic, are (finally) re-emerging from the depths and floating back into focus.
And there’s no denying that pursuing a new project – that could propel your organisation forward – can be exciting, but it can also be daunting. Especially if you’re having to comb through all the figures first to try and find the resources to set those wheels in motion.
Well, what if we told you that we have identified some key (and largely overlooked) areas where your IT budget might just be seeping away?
Is Oracle controlling your purse strings?
One of the most overlooked costs in an organisation’s IT budget is software support or, more specifically, vendor support.
Most organisations wouldn’t even consider tackling Oracle Support as a viable cost-saving option, and don’t realise it’s a relatively quick and effective way to claw back a significant chunk of budget. This is largely due to the fact that most Oracle customers have been led to believe that, without vendor support, their systems will fall apart.
While your systems won’t literally disintegrate, unsupported software could mean that you are no longer eligible to receive the latest security patches (so kindly provided on a quarterly basis by Oracle) and bug fixes.
It’s this sense of fear and vulnerability (as well as concerns around maintaining compliance) that has prevented many organisations from cutting ties with Oracle Support.
But vendor support isn’t the only way to ensure your systems stay supported, compliant, and secure. There are other options and third-party support could be the fix you’re looking for.
Climbing the support cost staircase
It’s a common misconception that Oracle Support is a fixed cost in your IT budget.
The cost of support is fixed in the sense that it will always be there as a necessary upkeep expense (unless you fancy going unsupported), but the amount you actually pay varies year-to-year.
In fact, this particular vendor has a reputation for its lacking service levels and steep support costs.
Despite stepping down through the declining levels of Oracle Support, the vendor will continually step up the pricing and you’ll find your support bill inflated each year by as much as 24% by the time you enter Extended Support.
So, while you may well have budgeted for a ‘fixed’ support cost, you probably didn’t account for this jump in outgoings.
A visual representation of Oracle’s infinite staircase can be viewed in our ten-year projection of Oracle Support costs.
What about Oracle’s cost-saving options?
Support costs are just one of the ways in which your organisation could be losing out on its IT budget.
If the vendor has somehow tied you into a ULA (unlimited licence agreement), you’ll be subjected (in true Oracle style) to an annual increase in fees as outlined in your three-year contract.
Perhaps the most dangerous aspect of a ULA, however, is the misguided belief that “unlimited” really means unlimited. Many organisations think this kind of agreement frees them up to consume as much Oracle software, and as many products, as needed.
But this is not the case.
The reality of a ULA could see many unsuspecting organisations using more than is covered in their agreement. This can lead to a massive and unforeseen bill that definitely was not accounted for in the budget.
Comparatively, if your consumption decreases during the period of your agreement, you’ll end up overpaying for your licences. So it’s not exactly the value for money you were looking for.
Because of these very concerns (amongst others), the complexity of an Oracle estate can leave many organisations feeling out of control, which means they might not be able to determine the value of the ULA before entering into an agreement.
And if you’re unable to get a handle on your Oracle estate, and don’t accurately declare usage when Oracle comes a-knocking to undertake an audit, you could ultimately find yourself in a sticky situation with further financial implications.
Short-staffed and short-changed
For some organisations, the demand of servicing an Oracle estate can be so much that they employ dedicated personnel to constantly oversee its requirements, usage, and maintenance.
Each will be tasked with different responsibilities (maintenance, Oracle self-help fixes, managing usage, etc). Or, you might be pulling other members of your internal team to pick up the slack as and when they’re needed to.
Such resources could be streamlined and better deployed elsewhere, enabling organisations to focus, instead, on ROI positive projects.
But not wanting to rock the boat, you (like so many others) will accept Oracle Support as the status quo. So, you’re not likely to contemplate that an alternative provider may be better able to accommodate your IT roadmap, continued development, and future ventures.
Don’t break the bank, break the cycle
Fret not, though, because where there is a (large) bill, there is a third-party support provider.
Opting to engage a third-party support provider could enable your organisation to make considerable cost savings effectively and for the long term.
You could cut your organisation’s annual support bills by a minimum of 50%. And with Support Revolution? Well, our customers saved, on average, 64% on their Oracle Support costs.
And, because moving to third-party support means that you can choose to stick with your current system version, you can focus your team and resources on those all-important ventures and innovations.
In addition, we don’t issue self-help guides for fixes (unlike Oracle), so you can be sure that – rather than handling support tickets that have been left on read by the mega-vendor for months at a time – your teams are pursuing the projects that will futureproof your operations.
Not only could you master your IT budget ahead of your upcoming project, but you could also be freeing up more resources to support with growth projects to push on your organisation.
Let’s seal the deal
Finding the budget to bring new innovations to the table can be a challenge.
But there is a very big drain in the room that’s often left unacknowledged and unplugged.
Oracle Support is siphoning off large chunks of your IT budget and you may feel you’re powerless to plug the leak. But you can.
Why not chat to us to see how we could help you find the IT budget you need to seal the deal and pursue your next major project (as well as all your future developments too).
Or, if you’re ready to wave goodbye to vendor support, you can find out more about how to leave Oracle with our handy guide: