May 03, 2023

Spinnaker redefines IT support by actually supporting customers

For many technologists, the phrase “sustaining support” implies something that it is not. Once your Oracle products reach that dreaded level of maturity, IT leaders know they will be paying more for diminishing service. Companies of all sizes face what seems like a no-win situation—suffer price hikes while receiving a lower level of support, or spend precious time, budget, and resources on an upgrade that’s more of a benefit to Oracle than to your bottom line.

Third-party support for Oracle is an ideal alternative that keeps you in control of your IT roadmap. Severing your Oracle support contract does not mean you are putting your business in jeopardy. Instead, Spinnaker gives you the autonomy to decide what is best for your operation while providing increased customer satisfaction, security, and support.

Oracle creates outstanding software and products. Sadly, high support costs continue long after implementation, coupled with a never-ending barrage of updates designed to keep your system locked into a continual upgrade loop.

Spinnaker Support takes a very different approach to how we work with our clients. Unlike Oracle and other third-party support options, we consider ourselves part of your team. We dig in with your engineers to understand your customizations, the decisions that led to them, and how they are critical to your business. Our clients quickly discover that our definition of “support” means something vastly different than what they have been used to. Here are a couple of client stories showcasing the care and collaboration Spinnaker Support brings to every ticket.

Spinnaker Fixes One-Size-Fits-All Oracle Features With Personalized Solutions

One Spinnaker Support client faced a usability challenge with Oracle’s expense-tracking system, iExpense. When more than thirty transactions were selected for processing, not all the selections appeared when progressing to the next step.

The issue was with how the data was displayed. When more than 30 rows were entered into an expense report, the scroll bar navigation did not work as expected. When navigating to the next step in the process, the rows were not displayed properly (only the last three were displayed). As a result, it was not obvious that the user must scroll down to see the remaining rows.

This led to a confusing and frustrating experience for the employees. Administrative actions, like submitting expenses, should be frictionless. Time spent trying to navigate confusing software experiences adds up, leading to productivity inefficiencies and employee dissatisfaction.

Acting with urgency, Spinnaker Support provided an analysis and quickly understood that a standard functionality change to the accessibility setup was needed to address this issue. The update had added a scroll bar that was causing the problem. Reverting to a paginated approach was what was required.

Once the solution was identified and implemented, users could then simply toggle between an optimized screen reader or the standard mode.

After the issue was logged with Spinnaker Support, a viable solution was offered and accepted within two business days. The issue had been logged with Oracle Support for over seven months. It remained unresolved at the time of contracting with Spinnaker Support, demonstrating that Oracle’s priorities are not the same as those of their customers.

Spinnaker Untangles Issues Buried Under a Year of Oracle Updates

Oracle issued a client-specific Spanish language translation patch that was not compatible with 12.2 online patching tools. This unforeseen incompatibility put one of our clients in jeopardy of project abandonment and wasted efforts.

Once Spinnaker Support was contracted, it was discovered that there was a documentation error. The custom patch needed to be installed prior to other system updates. Unfortunately, since the urgency was not communicated to the client’s team, a year’s-worth of unrelated updates were made first, rendering the original patch obsolete.

The solution needed was a complicated one. The Spinnaker team immersed themselves into what made each update different; logs were dissected and the painstaking process of reverse engineering the issue unfolded. Eighteen iterations of the software later, Spinnaker achieved a successful outcome and the issue was resolved.

A successful, repeatable deployment was implemented without sacrificing the integrity and supportability of the system. Furthermore, because of the in-depth assessment and meticulous work of going through all the updates, there is now a deeper understanding of the client’s personalizations. No matter where their roadmap leads them, their house is in impeccable order.


These two stories share something in common: the companies were not having their needs met by their support providers. Their priorities were not a priority for Oracle, and their employees suffered hardships for it. Hopefully these small glimpses into how Spinnaker handles third-party support for Oracle give you the confidence to learn more about the choices available.