- Tambellini Analyst
ESTIMATED READING TIME: 3 MINUTES
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Student Game On

On April 30, 2018, Oracle Corporation announced its perspicacious acquisition of Vocado, a premier student-centric, cloud-based financial aid solution for higher education. This acquisition allows Oracle to expedite the Oracle Student Cloud timeline by at least one year. According to Oracle, the Student Cloud is expected to be available at the end of this year for institutions with limited complexity, and by the end of 2019 for the Oracle, core install base and more complex, R1 types of institutions. Vocado brings to the Oracle Student Cloud a modern and mature financial aid solution that is designed for all academic models across all stages of the student lifecycle.

Vocado is a multi-tenant SaaS financial aid solution that can integrate with both cloud and on-premises Student Information Systems. Oracle reports that the Vocado solution will be fully integrated with the Oracle Student Cloud, as well as, offered as a standalone financial aid solution. The company has also reported that connectors between Vocado and PeopleSoft Campus Solutions will be forthcoming. Vocado provides a full range of real-time events and web services that are exposed via RESTful APIs. The solution also supports integration with the Department of Education’s Student Aid Information Gateway (SAIG) and can handle interactions with the Central Processing System (CPS) for FAFSAs/ISIRs, Common Origination and Disbursement (COD), and the National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

Vocado was designed as a highly-automated and scalable platform that can support high volume institutions with hundreds of thousands of users and tens of thousands of transactions per hour. The solution is currently deployed in a private, for-profit institution that serves more than 100,000 financial aid disbursements. At the core of the solution is a process-management workflow engine that facilitates the automation of up to ninety percent of the financial aid processes, including those for the complex and Borrower-Based Academic Year (BBAY) schools.

Oracle’s acquisition of Vocado Financial Aid is a game changer for higher education. With Oracle accelerating its Student Cloud general availability timeline, those institutions looking to replace their legacy SIS will now have another viable choice in the near term, in addition to competitive solutions such as Unit4 Student Management and Workday Student. Oracle is taking a different approach to delivering its Student Cloud solution, which is designed as a complementary suite of SIS and CRM modules that can be consumed as separate, independent entities or, eventually, as part of a total student solution. This strategy allows institutions to follow a practical path to the cloud versus a total replacement strategy. Institutions can begin to shift key functionality to the cloud by migrating to a hybrid environment while minimizing disruption and risk to the institution. Over time, the on premises footprint will shrink, and the move to the cloud is the result of a series of smaller steps as compared to a total replacement.

This partnership between Oracle and Vocado is great news for higher education. It brings positivity to both companies and substantiates the Oracle Student Cloud with a premier financial aid solution. Likewise, the Vocado solution will benefit from Oracle’s marketing and technology strength.

Read more about the acquisition on the official press release from Oracle.

Learn more about Oracle’s Student Cloud:

Do you have questions about how the Vocado acquisition could impact your institution’s SIS replacement plans? Contact The Tambellini Group today to schedule a call with an analyst.


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Columnist: Mary Beth Cahill - Tambellini Analyst
As head of research for The Tambellini Group, Ms. Cahill focuses on higher education technology trends and software strategies. She has led numerous research efforts, specifically in the area of vendor ERP and Student Information System (SIS) software solutions, data and learning analytics, CRM, learning management, and social networking. Ms. Cahill is also the co-author of several published industry reports, including The Tambellini Group's "Upgrade or Replace" and "Vendor Review" series of reports.