GES has been connecting people to experiences, innovation, and one another for over 90 years. They are trade show partners to over 150K exhibitors in planning, design, and production of thousands of events every year. Oracle E-Business Suite is the ERP that runs both their financials and order management. They drive innovation in their product and services offerings by closely listening to customer’s needs. Their long, multi-year IT roadmaps start with a customer need, that becomes a business request, and then an IT technology implementation.
The core of their event setup process is their order management system that encompasses fulfillment, logistics, and billing. As there is no out-of-the-box option for this highly specialized workflow, they’ve heavily customized EBS to fit their business process. “It has to be running 24/7. Even if it’s down for a half an hour, we’ll hear it. We treat Oracle EBS as the heart of our entire ecosystem, and we need nothing less than extraordinary support,” Raj Velpuru, Vice President, Application, GES.
Trading extravagant fees with extraordinary support
With vendor support, they were required to pay extravagant fees while not being able to access support for their highly customized applications. “They don’t support customizations which was pretty difficult when we had any bug around customizations, even though the bug belonged to Oracle,” Velpuru explained. On top of paying for support that he couldn’t access; he was also disappointed in Oracle’s roadmap for EBS. “And then Oracle clearly stated that they’re not investing in EBS anymore. We weren’t ready to go to cloud at that time, so we were just paying money for support. That’s when we started looking at other options.”
Rimini Street stood out against competitors for its global scale. With events around the world, having a partner with 24/7/365 operations in 140 countries and territories backed by a team of experienced engineers was a deciding factor. During the RFP process, he was also impressed with the team. Velpuru recalled, “In fact, we had calls with the actual team to really feel the support experience and understand how to prepare for the transition.”
Rimini Support for Oracle EBS ticks all of GES’ checkboxes
After a stringent RFP process, GES chose Rimini Support for™ Oracle EBS for comprehensive support. They were able to both repurpose the 50% savings off of the vendor’s annual maintenance fees and access the functional help they needed. In addition to providing a level of support designed around their business needs, Rimini Street also helped them address other business problems. After downsizing due to the mass cancellation of in-person events during COVID, “We were all covering multiple roles. With Oracle support, we had more of the in-house team working only on Oracle, but with Rimini Street, we have the opportunity to redistribute resources beyond Oracle. For example, Rimini Street works directly with our IT and development partners, which allows my key manager to focus on other things beyond just EBS,” Velpuru said.
And when they need help with their EBS customizations, GES rests assured knowing Rimini Street will be there as partners that are both reliable and confident in their capabilities. “My day-to-day team appreciates that when we put in a ticket to Rimini Street, whether it is customized code or Oracle, an engineer comes on the call, works along with us, and then helps us get down to the bottom of it, which was not the case with Oracle,” Velpuru said. He added, “Rimini Street really ticked all the checkboxes of what we wanted to do.”
Partnering with Rimini Street also helps them transform how they’re seen by the business. “Rimini Street helps us add more business value, so that key leaders and the rest of the company start to see us as a partner instead of as a cost center,” Velpuru said.
And most importantly, they’re able to deliver on their goal of constant innovation in the service of customer needs. “We need nothing less than extraordinary support, and with the extraordinary support we get from Rimini Street, we can continue providing extraordinary support for our customers,” Velpuru said.