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Building a career from a Basis support position

I am part of the BASIS support team in our organization. I was previously working in data networking/WAN of our company but when our company went live on all modules all at once they changed my job profile and put me into the BASIS support team. So I am a baby in the SAP universe. What operating system certifications should I pursue and would they add value? Do employers look at the peripheral certifications you have, say Sun Solaris or Oracle DBA, when considering a basis person since the OS and the database are crucial parts of the basis administration? And what sort of 3 year goal plan should I start on if I want to get lucrative SAP openings considering the current role that I am in?

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Yes, companies do care about the databases and operating systems you have used as a Basis person. It's not so much the certifications - it's the hands-on Basis skills in particular environments that's the key. For example, there are times where Basis-NT skills have been hot. Occasionally, I'll see a job like a Basis-AIX position where the company only wants Basis folks with that particular background. But getting certified in those operating systems doesn't really do a whole lot for you in the SAP world. I'd rather see you get a WAS (Web Application Server) certification. As far as your three year plan, I think you just want to evolve along with SAP into a web-based architecture expertise. I don't see a lot of lucrative openings in the SAP field going forward - it's really more about keeping yourself marketable and avoiding periods of unemployment. If you can stay "on project," then you should be able to make decent (but not outrageous) money.

This was first published in October 2003

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