"For years and years, we talked about empowering people," he said. "I think it's not that simple. You've got to give them tools, hook them up to mentors, give them learning tools, career planning tools, so when you do empower them they have the right perspective and the right skill set to make a contribution to the company."
He also underscored the importance of social networking to HCM.
"People are interested in what other people are doing," Ellison said. "People are thirsty for information about what the company is doing. The ability to get people to connect -- to connect to the company, to one another -- is going to make for a very satisfied workforce. If you can reduce turnover, that's a dramatic productivity improvement for your company."
Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris' email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com