NEW! Oracle releases Prime Professional
Oracle has just released Oracle Prime Professional, a desktop application that is designed for scheduling and that connects to the Oracle Prime Projects database. Is this huge news!? Is this the tool that we will all be using to schedule our projects in 2025? It is a bit early to tell, but at least it might be! This possibility alone is reason enough for a first review.
(For the readers who don’t know Oracle Prime yet – read this blog post).
The first impression
The first odd thing when opening Oracle Prime Professional is that you don’t directly get whether it is a standalone application or a web interface.
It is clearly not a true standalone application such as P6 Professional, but a (chrome) container in which the Prime Projects web application runs. This means that the used pages are exactly the same as those of what you would see in the normal web interface of the Scheduling App of Oracle Prime. And that is good news as I believe that this interface looks great and is fairly powerful too. It includes value-adding features such as schedule check (see image above), role levelling, scenario comparison etc. You can read this blog post for a review of the scheduling possibilities in Prime, and of course, all these functionalities are also present in Prime Professional as it is Prime web in a ‘’container’’.
“So it is a browser?”, my skeptical colleague summarized. “I already have three of those.”
Well, his remark made me smile, because in a way, it actually is. But let us not be too pessimistic here. Oracle Prime Professional does ‘feel’ different than the web version because of a number of little things with a big impact for professional planning engineers.
The little big things
Let me first state that the reason why heavy schedulers still prefer the old P6 desktop client over the P6 web interface has little to do with functionality, but rather with small usability annoyances. And looking to small annoyances, Prime Professional is an undeniable upgrade over the web interfaces of both Prime and Primavera P6:
- No need to Save! The tool automatically saves any modification, just like the P6 Client. This is of course a big improvement. Anyone who made a schedule in Oracle Prime or P6 Web will agree.
- There is an undo-button. Let’s be honest, we all need those.
- Performance is better than Web-based tools. We all know that also this has been one of the reasons why the P6 web interface does not seem to have made their big breakthrough (yet). 0.1 seconds slower means a lot of time wasted for professional planning engineers.
- Prime Professional allows to have multiple tabs open with different views such as Activities, WBS and Resources. This greatly improves user-friendliness and planning efficiency.
- It has a menu structure which is very similar to P6 Professional. P6 users will much easier find their way to resource libraries, calendars, etc. without the need to understand how the entire Oracle Prime suite works.
My personal favorite – Printing
My favorite advantage of Prime Professional compared to its Web-version is the printing functionality. Web interfaces and printing (schedules) seem to have a tough marriage. Chrome containers don’t seem to have this problem. What a browser! Printing in Prime Projects looks very user-friendly and powerful. I truly like it.
The way forward
Prime Professional is not a finished product yet. A P6 adept who will compare it to their holy P6 Desktop Client might still be reluctant to use (the first release of) Prime Professional at this very moment. But the real good news is that many improvements are still (or should be) on the roadmap. Here is what we will be waiting for:
- Off line modus like P6 Cloud offers.
- A view where Gantt chart and Resource Histogram are combined.
- Better baseline functionality, as Prime is not at the level of P6 here yet. It is for example not yet possible to restore or update a baseline.
- More smart and value-adding functionality, but here Oracle will have to surprise us.
If Oracle can deliver all these, Prime Professional might be huge news! Because let’s not forget: while matching P6 in scheduling is of course a challenging task; the upside of Prime as a more comprehensive project controls solution is substantial. The unique selling proposition of Prime is that it is not only a powerful scheduling tool, but that it is equally effective as a tool for scope management, cost management, lean task management, risk analysis and many others. Prime Professional is yet another strong (and necessary) addition that makes Oracle Prime Projects more complete.
Please let us know what you think about Oracle Prime Professional.