I am having experience in Testing in an IT Company & want to shift to SAP Career..

Recently I have met lot of people who are working as Test Engineer/Testing Manager in IT companies and who are looking for a shift in career to SAP. Most of them are not aware about what is Testing Career in SAP consulting and they assume a role similar to their existing one to be available in SAP.

One thing which was common in most of the interaction was related to the role they will have to play/available to them in SAP consulting.

I always suggest them to first understand the following before deciding on SAP Career shift :

  • What is an SAP Project.. whether it is implementation, support, upgrade etc…
  • What is the role of Functional,Technical (ABAP,Basis…)Consultant in SAP project
  • Then try to understand what is a typical Testing job available in SAP.

There is no role as a General Tester in SAP project , but it will be always a testing role for a particular module. It can also be a testing role for ABAP, Authorization control testing, Performance Testing etc…Thus the pre-requisite will be always the knowledge about that module, technical area.

Let us take an example of a requirement for SAP SD Testing job:

Minimum xx to xx years of Testing experience in Order to Cash Process of SD

Strong functional knowledge of SAP SD processes

Working knowledge of SD is preferred

….

Strong knowledge of Testing Process, Testing Tools and Quality Policy/Processes

OR see another senior level HCM Testing job requirements:

QA Lead – IT(SAP HR/HCM )

  • testing experience on SAP HR/HCM (PA, OM, PT & PY).

  • testing experience on interfacing applications like SuccessFactors, Kronos & Taleo.

  • experience in test plan, test execution strategy, status reports

  • Strong understanding of project management or software development life-cycle methodologies (ASAP, Waterfall & Agile).

  • Excellent knowledge of HP Quality Center test management tool and the structure of test artifacts (test cases, scripts, results and defects) within the tool.

It is very essential that, they first have to get into one of the SAP module or Technical area and then specialize in SAP Testing .

The module or Technical area to be decided based on individual qualification, experience & liking etc….(Pl. Refer to my earlier posts)

I have just completed my SAP Training.. What should I write in my Resume?

Good demand for SAP consultants motivates many people to get into SAP and complete SAP training in a particular module.

Once they complete their training & start looking for a job in SAP area, many of them face a dilemma about writing their resume. Most of them are confused about how to project their profile for SAP consulting role.

The normal question asked is, what should I write in resume for SAP related role?

( I am assuming a candidate who has Functional/domain experience & has completed SAP training & Certification)

Always remember that, your resume has to give you an opportunity for an interview..Then during the interview, you have to show your competency in your functional area & your SAP knowledge. Also see https://suhasagashe.wordpress.com/2013/03/07/what-is-the-typical-role-of-sap-functional-consultant/ for understanding the SAP Consultant Role & prepare for your interview.

The Resume format can be chosen by individual, as per his/her choice but MUST cover the following:

Profile Summary:

  • Your Name, Email & phone contacts

  • Profile Summary which highlights your Domain Experience prior to SAP training, SAP training & Certification done , & your SAP project experience.

  • Your basic & professional Qualifications., Certifications Completed.

Details:

  • Start the detail of your Resume with your experience in SAP area.. (if any). If you have worked on a SAP project as Trainee, give details about it & your role in it. If as part of your training, you have done a Project, do mention it with details. You may be strong or having in-depth working in a particular sub module, do highlight that so as to get more discussion on it during interview..

  • SAP Training completed : Give details about Institute from where you have completed SAP training & the status of Institute. It is always advisable to complete the training from SAP authorized training institutes. You can get the list on SAP’s official website.

  • Anybody who wants to move into a particular SAP Module/consulting must have working experience in that area. The domain experience in your chosen SAP Module provides you to understand SAP in a much better way & is valued by organizations. .Please highlight your Domain experience and the areas in which you have worked before SAP training.

  • If you have some exposure in supporting and/or using any ERP systems, do mention those details.

  • Many people are involved in ERP deployment,testing or working as actual user for their daily functions. This gives them good exposure to ERP systems which is very beneficial while working in SAP area. Awareness about systems in general and ERP in particular will be helpful. e.g.those of you who plan to get into SAP HR payroll, TM, must be knowing the existing systems thoroughly & you must mention this.

  • If you have any exposure to understanding of Codification Schemas followed in your function/systems.

  • Your Computer proficiency-.A very good hands on in MS Office helps..

  • Soft Skills & any special Language proficiency .

    One of the areas where many aspiring SAP Consultants lack is the Soft Skills area. You will have to communicate with people at all levels and that will cover written, verbal and many presentations…..If you were involved in pre-sales, presentations etc. do mention it.

  • The other common personal details such as address, age,…..etc. Etc.

I will also suggest, not to wait till you complete your Training & Certifications. Start preparing your resume when you are nearing your training.. Also browse thru’ job portals of reputed Consulting companies giving profile requirements for Junior SAP Consultants…This helps in modeling your resume.

 

Career Progress –Junior FI Consultant

I met a Junior SAP FI consultant and he was curious to know how he can move forward in his SAP Career. His name was Vinay and he is Chartered Accountant and has taken SAP FI training. Subsequently he has been working in SAP FI support project for last @ 2 years. As in such cases, he was worried that he will not make career progress in SAP as he is working on SAP Support Project and NOT on implementation project. There was little chance that his current organisation can provide him an implementation project in near future.

I asked Vinay about his last two years experience and the skills/competency he has achieved in his SAP area, namely SAP FI..I just asked him few following questions:

“Can you say that you have mastered FI module and you know AR, AP, and GL fully?”

“Are you able to resolve most of the issues referred in above areas?”

“What is your competency level for FI integration with other modules implemented in your organisation?”

“Are you confident that you can complete FI module from start to end? You should be confident to do it at least for a dummy project!!”

“What is your comfort level for Master Data- design/migration etc.?”

“What is your exposure to AM, and CO module?”

“ If I ask a Senior FI/CO consultant from your team to assess your knowledge in above areas, will you be judged a competency of K2 in above areas?”

 

Vinay answered most of the questions but admitted at the end that he is not that confident in many areas!! We discussed about his current project and the work he is doing..There are many areas even in his current project that will give him lot of value addition.

 

This thinking that there is great value addition only on implementation project was removed finally. I suggested him “Just concentrate on any of the sub modules AR,AP,GL which you enjoy the most. Become a master in that area and use your knowledge for issue resolution, helping others. Anybody who is stuck up in that area should recollect your name for solution..Become ‘Guru’ for that area in your project..”

“Then concentrate on other areas, Integration, Authorisation controls, ABAP specs writing etc…and for any new upgrade, implementation project you will be selected by default!!”

 

The best way is to use the opportunity available in the environment..Try to add value to the project by acquiring higher skills/competency and you will be making Career progress….

 

 

Starting SAP Career

How to start SAP Career?

One question which is commonly asked to me is How to start my SAP Career?

There are many professionals working in Non SAP area who are interested in moving to SAP consulting for various reasons. The reasons for change and attractions for SAP career need to be well thought off by individual before jumping into SAP career..These will vary from individual to individual and will be met at different levels with Career change. One must be very very clear what he/she wants to achieve with career change to SAP.

What are those many reasons perceived for change to SAP career:

  • Good opportunities for SAP Consultants
  • There is always demand for SAP consultants as compared to other IT professions
  • Its combination of Non IT profession with IT profession
  • Want to explore IT Consulting as compared to routine work in my domain
  • It will give me opportunities to work abroad
  • Want to earn much more than what I get today
  • Want to work in Consulting organization and not in Manufacturing/financial organizations
  • Want to be in IT as it has many advantages
  • Was SAP user and know much more than those Consultants advising my company
  • Am already Project Manager in IT company but want to manage SAP projects
  • There is Growth in SAP consulting as copared to my profession

One can get many more but I have put very frequently quoted reasons for planning a move to SAP career..I have been interacting with many of those aspirants and have found that most of the times they do not have complete picture of SAP Career & Consulting..Morever many of them are carried away by the opinions of friends/colleagues..In many cases the peer pressure is the only push for planning a move.

Any career change has to be planned well after understanding the new profession, its requirements, own expectations, additional skills/efforts required for career change, support required etc..

It should be planned & executed very well as it affects your Career and affects you…