Oracle Rushes to Catch Up in the Cloud

 

More than seven years ago, Oracle held an event for journalists at the iconic Guggenheim Museum in New York City. The company’s then-president, Charles Philips, unveiled Oracle Enterprise Manager 11g, a platform that consolidated systems-management and support tools for on-premises sysadmins and other tech pros.

“What we’re building is an iPod for the enterprise,” Phillips told the audience, “where you have hardware and software working together.”

The event is worth noting, all these years later, because it contrasts so mightily with Oracle’s current orientation as a company (and an Ideal Employer for enterprise tech, according to Dice’s latest survey). Today’s Oracle is focused with laser-like intensity on becoming a corporate cloud player, with products designed to match—if not exceed—Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure. While it continues to maintain on-premises solutions for those enterprises that maintain their own datacenters and servers (and there are still a lot of those, no matter what cloud-adoption rates suggest), Oracle executives have lately made it clear that they want companies of all sizes to sign onto their newest generation of cloud products.

As far as tech pros are concerned, that means Oracle is hiring as many cloud specialists as it can. “We do draw applicants from a lot of cloud firms and startups,” Jonn Nolitt, Global Vice President, Talent Advisory and Executive Recruiting Leadership for Oracle, told Dice. Industry consolidation all but guarantees that a healthy portion of those who go to “niche players” will eventually find themselves on the staff of bigger firms.

“There’s always been a cloud and cloud-related focus for the past number of years,” he added. “There’s an intense focus on cloud engineers, cloud consultants, cloud sales and support. We’re focused on our candidates with technical savvy, and now the ability to collaborate, and deal with an unpredictable world.”

Oracle will need that talent if it wants to compete in this evolving world. Amazon continues to dominate the business-cloud space, with massive numbers of companies relying on AWS for instances. Google and Microsoft are likewise willing to spend billions of dollars to build out their cloud infrastructure and talent—and their robust cultures and high salaries will surely attract all types of tech pros.

That being said, Oracle has survived this long in the tech industry for a reason: it’s well-entrenched with its customer base, and it’s an aggressive competitor. Despite all the market it needs to take in order to win the “cloud crown,” nobody should count it out.

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