Case Study

Modernizing Oracle Forms Applications with Technip Energies

APEX to Forms Modernization

The Overview

Services: Legacy Modernization, Oracle APEX Development

Solutions: UX/UI, Training, Agile

Industry: Energy Technology, Engineering Services, Project Management

Technip Energies is a leading technology provider focusing its engineering and technological know-how on developing new solutions for the world’s energy transition. With a global presence and approximately 15,000 employees, it provides the energy industry with a full range of design and project development services, from early engagement to delivery. Technip Energies aims to accelerate the journey to a low-carbon society.

The Challenge

Due to its software editor’s upgrade to Oracle APEX, Technip Energies needed to modernize several of its custom material management applications. These had been developed in Oracle Forms and included many extensions.

The project consisted of converting these Oracle Forms to APEX to provide optimal integration with the software editor’s applications. At the outset of the project, 363 Forms required transformation. The timeline was tight. The entire modernization had to be completed within only twelve months.

The Solution

To ensure the success of this large-scale project, Insum teamed up with Talan, a world-class project management and governance expert (that Insum has recently joined). With their proven ability to manage highly complex projects, the Talan Insum team ensured the quality of the deliverables and deployments.

The transition had to be as efficient as possible to meet the deadline. To avoid having to change the ways users work, Technip Energies set out for a straight Forms-to-APEX migration, simply maintaining application functionalities while increasing performance. However, it became apparent during the project that APEX’s “out-of-the-box” capabilities could allow the addition of several features and improvements. These were added when appropriate and without ever slowing down the overall timeline.

To the client’s and users’ delight, these changes improved search functionalities and navigation and created a more user-friendly UI while enhancing application efficiency.

The Approach

Together, Talan and Insum served Technip Energies with a proven agile implementation methodology, continually adapting to the client’s reality.

The project was structured in waves, starting with an evaluation period (wave “0”) before any development work began. In this wave, a representative sample of the Forms applications to be modernized was assessed with the help of Insum’s automated evaluation tool. This assessment was the starting point of synergies with the client’s technical team: it helped all parties develop a common language and to better understand the system overall. In addition, work during this stage helped address several technical challenges that could have affected the project’s efficiency. For example, it enabled the successful transition of the client’s suite of web services to the new APEX applications.

In other “wave 0” meetings, developers and analysts presented users with application mock-ups and possibilities for discussion, which was particularly useful in preparing for the transition of complex Forms. It also helped establish design standards for UI work to achieve a more uniform application functionality, look, and feel across business units.

Planning the project by waves using sprints and daily scrums provided all parties excellent visibility of project progress. In addition, it ensured the work always respected the environment’s security requirements.

Once the project was underway, it included regular scrums between developers, analysts, and QA teams from both sides, with routine User Acceptance Testing to drive the work forward.

A Formalized Process

A formalized global process, including change management, was agreed upon with the client and understood by users. This was instrumental in the project’s success. Insum and Talan:

  • Put in place a strong team that included high-calibre, experienced professionals.
  • Established project governance activities to manage risk and ensure smooth operations.
  • Established a quality control structure for all critical members of the project.
  • Implemented robust scheduling and interface management.
  • Ensured open team member communication, to share experiences, ideas, and concerns.
  • Validated the design process to maximize process repeatability.
  • Provided smooth, effective change management.
  • Allotted times for review of completed work to propose improvements when appropriate.

The Results

Despite some unforeseen scheduling challenges, the Insum Talan team delivered on time and budget, and Technip Energies was highly satisfied with the results.

Layouts and user interfaces were adapted to the software editor’s new APEX applications, harmonizing the user experience.

The Talan-Insum team also provided Technip Energies with expert APEX advice and coaching. Their developers had access to APEX experts throughout the project for support, bolstering their development skills.

Technip Energies continues developing and creating extensions, using their new-found good practices and higher standards.

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