If you thought Oracle audits were an issue in past years, buckle your seat belts for 2021. We expect Oracle audits to reach new heights of frequency and intensity over the coming months, specifically around Q2 2021. The driving factor is based on macro-market conditions that have been out of their control:
- Oracle has essentially been on hiatus for a year, not able to get on site and pester their customers about license compliance.
- Oracle customers have been more cost conscientious than in years past and have been more active in cancelling support for unused products.
- The global pandemic has caused many customers to delay or even scrap plans to make new Oracle purchases and/or license expansions.
Because of these conditions, we see a huge, pent up demand inside Oracle for audit activity and believe starting in approximately June 2021, we will see unprecedented levels of Oracle audits inflicted on the commercial markets.
One of the oldest plays in the Oracle playbook, is to leverage the inflated (and often VERY wrong) audit findings to drive more incremental revenue in exchange for limiting or even eliminating the misleading or even outright phony audit action. This can be revenue to increase the old on-premise stuff, but more recently, audits are being used as a hammer to drive more cloud revenue – whether you need it or not.
Oracle is more than happy it seems to accept a cloud purchase as a means to cover an on-premise compliance issue. Important to note that while Oracle LMS may close out your audit with a corresponding cloud acquisition, the underlying cause of the original compliance issue may go unresolved, leaving you with less money and the same headache. Oracle looks to bump its cloud numbers ever higher, what better way than to audit a customer, find some alleged compliance issues, and leverage the penalties to put the customer in some brand-new cloud offerings at a relatively lower cost.
It has been said that those who fail to learn from history, are doomed to repeat it. The case of Oracle audits is no different. You don’t have to be audited yourself to learn from other’s missteps and issues:
- Mondaq ITAM: ITAM Survey Uncovers More Evidence of Oracle’s Predatory Audit Practice Designed to Drive Oracle Cloud Sales
- The Register: Apologies for the wait, we're overwhelmed. Yes, this is the hospital. You need to what?! Do a software licence audit?
- InfoWorld: What does an Oracle audit look like? This one certainly wasn’t pretty. In this case, Mars had to threated litigation to force a remedy that was acceptable.
- BusinessInsider: ‘I felt like we were being extorted’: Customer says Oracle tried to strong-arm him into a cloud sale
- CBS Denver: Denver admits software licensing violations.
Oracle has been steadily climbing our audit ‘naughty’ list since 2015, debuting at number four. Climbing to number two in 2019 with their push to the cloud by leveraging compliance issues, we think they are now poised to take the top spot as we kick off 2021. The market is too ripe for them to stop the practice, and in fact with companies struggling to keep up with the new market dynamics brought on by the pandemic (work at home support, security, etc.), they will no doubt use this time to push their advantage.
The perfect storm is brewing for Oracle right now. They have the history, incentive, and market conditions all aligned in their favor that will trigger an aggressive audit season.
The best audit that can be performed, is the one done by you. NEVER engage Oracle, an Oracle partner, Oracle reseller, or any other entity with the word Oracle officially tied to it. Better yet, let us do the audit for you:
- NET(net) utilizes the exact tools Oracle uses while auditing their customers.
- NET(net) does not require their clients to perform any additional work outside of the Oracle standard audit procedure.
- Oracle will not know that NET(net) is analyzing the data, and results are kept strictly confidential via NDA.
- NET(net) is not a mandatory reporter on compliance like many Oracle reseller and partners
- NET(net) never has, and never will partner with a software supplier or reseller.
Oracle’s fiscal year ends in June. NET(net) clients are currently situated in the driver’s seat to attack any compliance issues straight on. There is still plenty of ‘runway’ to preform and Oracle compliance check prior to the end of Oracle’s Q4. Making a purchase from Oracle is always the least preferred option. There are always multiple alternatives to remedy compliance woes, you just need to know how to manage them. If all alternatives are exhausted, NET(net) will still be primed to obtain a market optimized deal from Oracle prior to June 1, 2021.
Something for Nothing
There is one thing you can get for nothing – and that’s a phone call with us. To use a legal term, we don’t ‘take the case’ if we don’t think we can help. We are always happy to talk through Oracle compliance situations and give you the raw, unfiltered truth of what needs to be done. If that includes working with us, great. If not – we’ll tell you that too.
Contact us to get something scheduled.
In the meantime, if you’ve not see or read enough about Oracle, here’s more light reading:
- Article: JAVA - Like Being Free, But Oracle Instead
- Article: Oracle Sales Silos and How They Work Against You
- eBook: Oracle 12 Most Egregious Terms and Conditions
- Case Study: Oracle 3rd Party Support
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