- Paperback: 240 pages
- Publisher: eCruiting Alternatives, Inc; 2nd ed. edition (October 1, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0972598804
- ISBN-13: 978-0972598804
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 18 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,774,393 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The SAP Consultant Handbook 2nd ed. Edition
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The best way to kick off an SAP career is with the Big 4 (KPMG, Deloitte, Ernst, and PWC). Leading consulting firms such as Accenture, IBM, and of course, SAP are also good places to start.
The author has a chapter devoted secifically for those startig out on SAP. Here are the things SAP employers are looking ordered by their relative importance.
1)R/3 Implementation experience
2)R/2 Implementation experience.
5)Relevent industry or management experience (such as Oracle or JAVA).
6)Communication and interpersonal skills
7)SAP certifications (bummer this ranks so low)
8)Experience as SAP trainer or user
9)Higher education degrees such as MBA.
Here are other tidbits:
1)It appears ABAP programming is the least "hot" field in SAP since it is also the most outsourceable and SAP is moving towards JAVA.
2)References count more in SAP circles than most since there are many "fake" SAP resumes out there. Also, SAP community is a tight knit community where both your technical and personal reputation is exchanged freely and widely.
3)SAP project managers, while in demand, rarely become high earning independent contractors. Some SAP modules are hotter than others, but it is constantly changing. The book states the HR module expertise is in high demand (in 2002).
4)Having Big 4 consulting experience can pay big dividends as independent SAP consultant.
5)The future of SAP career looks promising, although its peak heyday may have passed.
The main issue with this book is that it is already 6 years old. Due to the rapidly changing climate of the SAP industry, it is safe to say much of the information contained in this book is dated. Much of it, however, still remain valid.
I guess, if you're THINKING about making the leap to SAP, this book does give you a very good idea on what to expect. But if you're currently practicing SAP, forget about this book. There's nothing here that you don't already know. There was one chapter though, that did provide something new to me. SAP contracting. Jon Reed explains when to go into contracting, the pros and cons, and even analyzes (with examples) the lifes of some contractors.
Jon Reed undoubtly knows a lot about SAP. But unfortunately this book does not do him justice and does not capture the wealth of information he obviously has. I would've liked a book that explores a typical SAP project environment. How to deal with your team mates, with your clients? The best way of getting information from clients. If you're looking for this sort of information, look elsewhere as it is not here in this book. Other than that, as I said...a good introduction to someone trying to get into SAP.
The purpose is; "We wrote this book because we believe that there are many people who can make a real contribution to the SAP field . . ." (p65). And they let the cat out of the bag on page 30; "The best way to get into SAP is still to be in the right place at the right time . . . the next best way is to . . ." (read the book for yourself). The real secret to becoming an SAP consultant is on pages 72-73.
There is a recurring theme of knowledge transfer and training throughout the book: "A professional with clear-eyed business knowledge . . . a knack for teaching . . . and empathy." (p21) " . . . but the most successful pay attention to the `soft' communication skills involved in project management, training, team-building and knowledge transfer." (p37) "The key phrase now is `knowledge transfer'" (p 56) "The Queen's English" (p69) ". . . the ability to express what you know . . ." (p69) ". . . think communication skills PLUS." (p76) "References count more for SAP candidates than in most other sectors of business." (p85) "You may find it necessary to educate the client . . ." (p92) "Those who have done and can teach SAP should be paid as much or more than when they are doing, but will not be." (p114) ". . . a transfer of knowledge is the greatest service a consultant can provide." (p135) ". . . consultants who are not certified are finding themselves at a disadvantage." (p145) "You may lag longer than you wish on a given assignment, but there could be gold waiting down the line for you if you take advantage of that lag time to . . . learn." (p159) "We do believe that strong communication skills and a solid business understanding are necessary for all who succeed in this business" (p192) "Continuous career improvement?" (p229, these are the final words of the last chapter).
Welcome to Germany. I trained some German SAP guys in London many years ago as R/3 was just coming out. Not in R/3 but in project management and software consulting skills. A word of caution. Go big. At least initially. The Germans have a love of scale and scope that is reflected in their industries. Their finances. Their software paradigms.
Your doing skills are a function of your being skills. In other words, what SAP can do is a function of what the Germans are. Engineers. And so, when it comes to reengineering, you can't go past SAP. Actually, Enterprise Resource Planning. Which is a subset of Enterprise Project Management. In other words, by the time you restructure the organisation to function on a project-by-project basis, something that is extremely difficult in a large organisation, but very profitable for a multibillion dollar company, you will have sorted out the enterprise resource planning. This is why SAP stresses the concomitant reengineering that is integral to any SAP implementation. This explains the SAP storm. Directors finally saw a business return, both savings and higher profits, from their IT systems and they went for it. The benefit for the Board was that they regained the agenda from the techies. By rolling in SAP into their IT systems, directors were rolling out the techie agenda from the board. They finally found a way to connect business sense to IT spend.
The authors stress the importance of Implementation experience throughout the book. And implementation experience is about Delivery, which is a function of who you are. Or as the authors put it; "Who are you?" (p17). This partly explains why it is so hard to become an SAP consultant. You have to be the `right person' in the right place at the right time.
My criticisms are thus: The font is too small.
In conclusion, this is a book for the Pro by the Masters in the field. Even the contributors are among the best in the business. If you think it's easy giving career advice, try it sometime. The authors are to be congratulated for their honesty. This book gets a gold medal.
Most recent customer reviews
chaoter just on that. really great book. very practical
and knowledgable advices.