Audit, Licensing,

How is Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) licensed and audited?

Short Answer

As much art as science, users are assigned responsibilities, mapped to applications, to modules, to your entitlements, in many-to-many relationships. Think spaghetti.

In-Depth Answer

Oracle’s published metric for EBS is Application User, defined as an individual authorized to use the application programs whether (or not) they utilize that access. Enterprise metrics are also common, in which case, user quantities don’t matter.

Measuring EBS usage is complex. Mapping a given individual to the licenses they consume is not a scientific exercise due to functional complexity. Responsibilities often require access to multiple applications, forms, menus, and functions. Tribal knowledge of how the software is used is required to estimate license compliance; ambiguity obscures this process, especially large complex environments.

Within a formal audit, data from up to 25 tables is extracted and provided to Oracle, a process that puts customers into the unfortunate position of defending a compliance position against Oracle’s broad set of assumptions.

Note that we routinely review EBS contracts that originated in the 1990s. Mergers, acquisitions, bundling, license migrations, inconsistent username conventions, etc., serve to further complicate software asset management. Finding modules and users that do not require access based on activity enables cost reduction.

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