You can transition in to SAP from virtually any vocation….once you know how to leverage what you already have and as long as we can fill in the gaps of what you still need.
But it’s also about really knowing your tastes in business.
If you’re happiest braiding cables in a server room, you’re not likely to be happy fronting a room of nervous end-users. If you’re a people-person, you’re likely happier working with them on upfront solutions, rather than testing the end-product code alone. If you like getting elbow deep into the details of problem solving, a path into architecture rather than project management will likely suit better.
“I want to work with SAP” is a very broad declaration,
and broad statements can have hard-to-find starting lines.
There’s not even just the consultants, there’s the entire smorgasbord of everything around them too: PMO’s, change managers, BA’s, testers, trainers, business development managers, recruiters, marketers, cyber security people and those crafty UX people who make it all look pretty to use.
Combinations of SAP skills, like pizza topping, are almost infinite…but there are themes.
So: we have to find your theme, your SAP flavour.
We have to orient you in this huge world of ERP and the menu of possibilities within.
So, we’re going to start with a high-level overview, to help find what path is most interesting, or most resonates, or is the shortest cross-step from what you’re doing now. Then we can worry about diving deeper into that solution stream. The risk of leaping into one stream without the overview, is not having the chance to develop an appreciation for the whole machine, and therefore not giving yourself the chance to understand how your eventual slice integrates with the greater whole.
Meet some of your new best friends:
LinkedIn Learning ($)
Video training materials, great for getting a taste of the ERP world and what SAP actually does. Start with an ‘SAP ERP Essential Training’ course, for a general overview of what SAP is, does and how it’s put together. A good summary of the different areas of SAP, to help identify which area of SAP is for you. Then, type ‘SAP’ into the course search box, and browse some of the other videos – most only go for an hour or so.
Free with a Premium LinkedIn membership or can be purchased course by course.
Free training by SAP, online, in your own time, across almost everything. Courses are more in depth, range from a few hours to a few weeks, covering high level contextual information, right down to module-specific configuration and development training.
Get a few of these under your belt, on your CV and added to your LinkedIn profile.
International Institute of Business Analysts ($)
Solid BA and consulting skills are the most important things employers look for in consultants. SAP comes essentially “pre-configured”, using ‘best practice’ rather than custom coding is preferred and many companies offshore the actual technical development. So there is increasing value in bringing quality, transferrable BA skills; useful no matter what SAP stream you choose to follow.
Membership varies, but is around ~$190/year for an individual member. There are excellent training materials available and industry credentials to work towards once you’re in.
SAP Learning Hub ($)
Literally, all the official SAP courses.
They are organised as both individual courses, as well as entire training journeys, by stream.
From here, you can follow training paths, view training material, book classroom courses or online programs, as well as go for the formal industry benchmark: The SAP Certification program.
Free to join and access some content, though structured courses and the associated exams are at costs, ranging from $100’s to $1000’s.
Insights from this article:
- SAP is huge, no one knows “the lot”
- SAP Consultants have a stream or specialty they work in, and may overlap a few modules
- Doing a general/overview course can help orient you in the SAP world
- Once you have a path in mind, then look at doing more specific training
- There are online training materials – some free, some paid
- SAP Certification is the pinnacle / industry benchmark of expertise and can be a significant investment.