SAP Watch

Jul 15 2008   11:09AM GMT

SAP explains certification

JackDanahy Jack Danahy Profile: JackDanahy

After a long period of official silence on matters related to certification, SAP finally made some things clear to SearchSAP in a recent podcast. Here are the big takeaways:

*According to an internal SAP survey, 82 percent of hiring managers find SAP certification to be important or very important when making a hiring decision.

*if you’re going to invest in certification, invest in SAP’s own three-tiered certification offering, which is the only official, SAP-recognized certification offering in the marketplace. Lots of third parties currently offer SAP ‘certification,’ but SAP is going to be more aggressive about regulating these kinds of claims.

*According to SAP’s tracking of its 120,000 certified consultants, certification is most important at the early stages of an SAP career, but fades in importance later on. It is in response to this that SAP offers a ‘master’ tier of certification to recognize and reward senior-level consultants.

*SAP’s certification seeks to encourage and enable lifelong learning. It is part of the process of becoming a better SAP consultant. Thus, certification is not an end but a means.

It’s human nature to be afraid of open-ended processes. The biggest problem in the SAP careers marketplace is the skills shortage, which is itself a function not just of a manpower shortage but of a conniving attitude to SAP credentials. On many SAP job boards, it isn’t unusual to learn of SAP newcomers attempting to cheat on their interviews, inflating their experience, or otherwise misrepresenting their skills. We’ve long maintained that SAP has to take the lead in addressing this problem, and the SAP certification podcast indicates that it is very much on Walldorf’s mind.

Demir Barlas, Site Editor

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  • Madhusudan
    Hi, SAP is a great product and can be configured with decent business process knowledge and basic know how of SAP (or any ERP). There is a lot of fuss about prior SAP experience and SAP Certification. If consultants have a business degree or industry work experience then it should suffice. There is an artificial shortage of skills created by saying that certification is key to correct implementation and support and that myth is propogated to all the companies. If SAP is really concerned about ensuring the authenticity of certification, then it should make all the courses CERTIFICATION free or affordable. Why create scarcity? And then call it skill shortage? Most over-qualified people (from other industries) in India indulge in SAP Certification due to the entry barriers, since these barriers also ensure higher pay. Besides, I dont know why most companies search for certified or even SAP experienced consultants as what is more relevant is knowledge of business processes. Once companies stop paying a premium to certified consultants, and supply of consultants hit the market due to lower barriers, this market will come down. (But who wants that??) Regards (Certified SD consultant)
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