Oracle PeopleSoft Fluid is better than sliced bread. Really.

December 13, 2017
by Sierra-Cedar

If you’ve made the move to Fluid, the rest of this blog will just make you smug. For those who haven’t moved to the latest PeopleSoft user interface, let me provide you with both practical reasons and financial reasons on why you’d want to update your PeopleSoft to a modern user interface (UI).
The #1 reason organizations change from PeopleSoft to another system is the UI. Thousands of organizations have self reported this fact through the Sierra-Cedar HR Systems Survey1.
We hear that when end users hate a system, it will be changed. When users tell management that the system is an impediment to doing their jobs, then management begins thinking about a new system. As I said, this is the #1 reason for changing systems. There are many good and valid reasons to change your system, but changing simply because you want/need a new UI is not one, especially when PeopleSoft has a modern UI available right now that is mobile, intuitive, and effective.
There are additional reasons for moving to Fluid. The system’s out-of-the-box functionality can be accessed on a train, plane, or standing in line anywhere. Fluid supports all platforms that have a browser: PC/Mac, tablet, and phone. PeopleSoft processes are refined, pages are simplified, less training is required, and users like it.
I know of one organization that had heavily modified PeopleSoft. They thought they’d remake their old system with PeopleSoft. Users found this creation difficult to understand and hard to use. Enter Fluid: after an upgrade and the deployment of Fluid, users embraced the system. (By the way, users were not told that this was still PeopleSoft.) The system looked different, it acted different, and it was easy to use. Users were very happy with the “new” system and the organization didn’t need to discard PeopleSoft and implement a whole new system. Through Fluid, they adopted the leading system processes and pages and discontinued unnecessary customizations.
Finally, the old pages (called Classic) that you grew up with will become unsupported in a few years. The pages will still be there, but if you have a problem with a page, you’ll be on your own fixing it. Sort of like taking your Citroën2 to a car shop for a repair. Most places will tell you they don’t work on (support) those vehicles. When these pages eventually become unsupported, you will be responsible to fix whatever issue you’re having yourself.
PeopleSoft’s current pages are either Fluid or Classic+. Note that all pages look like they are Fluid, but the few that don’t automatically scale to a different screen size (phones vs. PC/Mac) are called “Classic+.” These pages are typically only for administrative users.
There are other issues to consider when deploying Fluid. For me, #1 is deploying a testing tool. Oracle provides a free tool called PeopleSoft Testing Facility (PTF). Remember that testing is more extensive now. Test on all the different platforms that will be used: PC/Mac, tablet and phone. A testing tool reduces the cost and accelerates the testing process. Another consideration should be the one-time cost to create Fluid or Classic+ pages for those custom pages that you’re keeping. It isn’t hard to convert a custom page(s), but it does take some time to design to the different platforms. Remember that not all pages are meant for all platforms. 
A few lessons learned from helping customers deploy Fluid:

  • If you have custom pages, consider using the delivered page. Can you use the delivered process/function or is a custom field(s) still providing a real benefit? Many customizations just don’t make “cents.” Test these pages with a beta group first and then deploy organization wide.
  • Regarding security, if you use mobile (and you should use it), remember that a corporate policy may need to be updated regarding the use of VPNs and BYOD (bring your own device).
  • Moving to PeopleSoft Fluid will help you prepare to eventually move to the Oracle Cloud—if you want to. Both systems have similar UIs, and moving to Fluid will help you simplify processes and pages.

The call to action? Update your system and deploy PeopleSoft Fluid. Two recurring messages I hear from clients is “wished we’d done this sooner” and a similar, “wish we’d done this with the last update.”
Please reach out if you’d like to discuss the details of what you can expect in effort and cost, now and the future.
VIDEO: Fluid UI: Enhancing the Modern User Experience
1 Sierra-Cedar HR Systems Survey White Papers
2 Citroën,