Delivering Consumer-grade User Experience in the Enterprise Application Ecosystem with Oracle Redwood

Nov 29, 2023
Oracle | 6 min READ
Legacy enterprise applications have been notorious for their clunky and complex user interfaces. In the 2000s, critical enterprise systems like Customer Relation Management (CRM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems came with a steep learning curve. After implementing them, organizations held extensive training programs to foster adoption, and resistance to change remained a key impediment to digital transformation.
Fast-forward to the 2020s, people are now accustomed to consumer-grade user experiences delivered by the likes of Google, Apple, Uber, or Lyft through their digital products and services. Thus, when employees return home after work, they interact through highly optimized and intuitive digital experiences. Unlike enterprise apps, such experiences come without a learning curve; users pick up their functionality on the fly. In other words, they can 'figure it out' on their own as they use these apps.
Manoj Verma
Manoj Verma

Practice Director -



Kasi Viswanadh
Kasi Viswanadh

Lead Consultant



Today, employees' expectations of digital experiences are set by such consumer-grade applications – which leads them to ask, "Why can't enterprise applications be as simple, intuitive, and easy to use as consumer apps?" In fact, the impact of technology on employee experience is quite significant – so much so that poor IT experience is one of the leading causes of burnout in modern workplaces1. Now that most industries have come far from the early waves of digitization, where paper-based processes were digitized as-is through monolithic systems, it is time to refocus efforts on optimizing and upgrading user interactions within such systems.
Introducing Oracle Redwood
Today, Oracle is one of the leading vendors in the enterprise applications market with its extensive portfolio of products. From ERP to supply chain management, human capital management, and cloud infrastructure solutions, Oracle has sought to serve the most pressing business requirements of enterprises for decades. Now, the enterprise technology vendor is reinventing the user experience throughout its portfolio of enterprise tech with Oracle Redwood.
What is Oracle Redwood?
Redwood is not just a UX layer that gives a different look and feel to Oracle products. It is a design and development framework that reinvents processes and interactions within Oracle applications by making them simpler, intuitive, and more responsive for the user. The end goal is to bring consumer-grade user experience to the enterprise technology stack powered by Oracle.
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Why is it important?
Oracle Redwood will unify the user experience across Oracle's portfolio of enterprise technology products. While Oracle has already been using Redwood for its Fusion and Cloud Application Suites, it is bringing the next-gen design to its entire portfolio. With this move, Redwood will simplify work, enhance the employee experience for enterprises, lower the training cost, and reduce the friction in transitioning to new Oracle implementations and version upgrades.
How does it work?
Redwood is a user experience framework that combines two key processes – user-centric design principles and patterns and toolkits to help developers create Oracle-powered processes based on these design principles. The key is to develop empathy and understanding of end-user requirements through wireframes, which can be iterated upon, and then use the Redwood Pattern Book and Design Toolkit to activate these experiences. The design elements are offered in Figma, and the Pattern Book offers well-researched user journey templates for enterprise use cases.
How will it affect me?
While Oracle Redwood will replace existing user interfaces across all products in the coming years, enterprises have already started implementing the Redwood experience across their Oracle ecosystem. Moreover, Oracle Cloud products will run on the new rendering engine, and Redwood features will be available as a baseline in the upcoming releases. But Oracle recommends organizations running on on-prem implementations and Cloud services to adopt Redwood in upcoming implementations and upgrades to start experiencing its benefits.
So, why should enterprises consider upgrading, and how will the transition pan out?
Exclusive features of the Redwood user experience
One of the crucial aspects of Oracle Redwood is its relentless focus on making it easier for users to accomplish tasks within Oracle applications. Here are some ways in which it achieves this:
  • New Styles, Colors, Icons, and Fonts: Design elements like icons offered in SVG formats enable developers to cater to different screen sizes and updated colors and fonts that lower eye strain and improve readability.
  • Application toolbar and unified search: A consistent application toolbar across Oracle products now comes with avatar support and a unified search experience that makes finding information faster with hints and dynamic results.
  • Zone layouts and dashboard personalization: Multiple zone layout combinations, horizontal and vertical content visualization, and flexible dashboard personalization capabilities with support for dynamic sizing.
  • Reduced mouse mileage and better support: Optimized screens and layouts that minimize mouse movement for the users, ability to flag issues within the logs, and receive resolutions from within the product.
  • New web components to expose data: Insight visualizations that enable developers to render data visually through badges, inline inserts, cards, lists, and tree objects that enable you to configure hierarchies of dynamic data.
Finally, Redwood implementations leverage a cleaner way to distinguish environments by adding an identifier to the top of the screen.
Key reasons to adopt Redwood now
These features of Redwood will significantly transform the employee experience in the Oracle ecosystem. For one, it will minimize the problem of app fatigue that has been plaguing workplaces since the 2010s by unifying the interfaces of Oracle applications2. Second, Redwood makes it possible to complete processes with minimal mouse movements and locate menu items by prefixing their partial names with a "/". Third, it enables employees to implement modern interfaces on their products with a Guided Process Pattern within minutes. And lastly, it eliminates the friction from the employee experience by making interactions smarter and more efficient.
All these factors bring a marked improvement in employee productivity and satisfaction – both of which significantly impact the bottom line3. The upgrade will also pay off in the long run, requiring minimal to no training in future upgrades and implementations of Oracle products.
How to transition to Oracle Redwood?
Enterprises can leverage the Redwood Design System and the Oracle Applications Platform in conjunction to build and extend consumer-grade Redwood applications. To this end, the Redwood design system offers a suite of prebuilt and configurable UX elements and components, conversational and search experiences, data visualization and telemetry components, and a low-code development environment.
However, enterprises will be best positioned to adopt and extend Redwood applications in partnership with a technology leader who can not only design experiences for their users but also help them exploit the complete potential of these solutions. While the transition to Redwood may require change management efforts, a phased adoption strategy can help minimize the disruption and ease the shift for enterprises.
What next?
User experience within the enterprise technology ecosystem has been due for a makeover for a few years. With Redwood, Oracle offers enterprises a path to bring consumer-grade experiences to Oracle products and applications. However, Redwood is not just a UX layer – it significantly changes how users interact with Oracle applications and will significantly impact employee experience and productivity. It will make work more efficient, eliminate friction from day-to-day work for employees, and lower employee training costs in future implementations and upgrades.
While Oracle offers a way to opt out of Redwood now, it will be the only experience supported in the ecosystem in the coming years. For enterprises with large-scale Oracle deployments, transitioning to Redwood can help them get ahead of the curve while bringing a welcome change in the employee experience. Most will find it prudent to join hands with a technology leader with significant experience, not just in developing Redwood applications but also with the Oracle ecosystem at large.
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