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Oracle unveils new enterprise learning management system

The Oracle Learning Cloud allows managers and employees to post and share video tutorials, PDFs and PowerPoints.

Leaders of Oracle took the wraps off a new product designed to be the YouTube of learning software.

Chris Leone, senior vice president of Oracle HCM development, outlined key features of the new Oracle Learning Cloud, including one that allows managers and employees to post and share video tutorials. The enterprise learning management system is part of a big emphasis on cloud HCM by Oracle.

If employees are experts on a particular topic, they can boost their own reputation by creating, assembling and publishing high-quality videos and other content such as PDFs and PowerPoints and encouraging feedback from other employees. They can also source content from the company or from external sites such as YouTube or online courses.

Another important aspect is a "recommendation engine" with an algorithm that makes suggestions for learning content based on the position and more than 100 competencies and job attributes of an individual.

In a keynote at Oracle HCM World, Leone said the enterprise learning management system was designed from the ground up to be the YouTube of the enterprise.

Through the personalized recommendations, "we are going to serve up to you in this portal exactly what you need to know at that particular time," Leone said during a demonstration of the software.

For example, consider a manager who has three requisitions open for hiring young college graduates. "We served up a video that is specific to how to hire younger workers," Leone said. "We can make personal recommendations as part of this process."

The enterprise learning management system is a new module available in Oracle HCM Cloud, and includes many of the features in an existing Oracle Taleo learning module, said Gretchen Alarcon, group vice president for Oracle's HCM product strategy.

The product reflects that Oracle must be "all in" on video, she said.

The infrastructure and service is important, she added. While the software is not proprietary, a lot of "heavy lifting" went into the technology.

Video quality key to enterprise learning management system

The video quality of the enterprise learning management system is fit to the speed of any network, including 3G, 4G and Wi-Fi. The software includes infrastructure to support transcoding and bit-rate adaptive streams, such as those used by YouTube and Netflix, so that employees can publish and consume content from any device.

Holger Mueller, a vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research in Cupertino, Calif., said the learning software is a good first step and shows the power of the Oracle platform.

It is probably the only learning effort by one of the large players that has core HR and payroll together with in-context learning, as well as the ability for people to create content themselves and to collect and archive that content, he said.

"It's another argument to use Oracle HCM cloud," said Mueller, who attended the unveiling at the conference.

A theme behind the software is that digital is transforming the world, and human resources technology also needs to change, Oracle officials said.

 "To adapt and succeed in today's digital workforce, HR and business leaders must simplify the employee experience and enable connections anywhere and via any device, personalize information and communicate it in a way that is relevant for their job, and create a culture where employees want to share their knowledge and … engage with each other in new and creative ways," Leone said.

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