Oracle debuts next-generation ERP suite

Oracle builds global applications into 11i applications suite.

Oracle Monday officially announced its 11i suite of enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications. But customers will still have to wait to get their hands on the technology, which Oracle has been hyping for months.

Speaking in Orlando, Florida, at the Oracle Applications User Group conference, company officials said the latest ERP release will allow companies to run applications globally from a single data centre. Other first-time wrinkles include a planning engine for supply chain applications that will run every facet of supply chain functionality, rather than forcing users to install different engines for different features.

Oracle has also moved a Web-based order management application originally scheduled for release 12 to 11i, but customers won't be able to begin implementing it until the second quarter of 2000. Other elements of the new suite will be available in the first quarter of next year. Oracle had originally targeted a fourth-quarter 1999 release date for the suite.

Also expected with the order management component in Q2: an enhanced customer relationship management suite that will offer integration to the ERP system as well as new self-service applications for employees, partners and customers of companies. Oracle has also overhauled the interfaces of its applications to give them a more graphical look and feel.