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Doing homework to prepare for mySAP CRM, BW career prospect

When researching Java skills, I have come across buzz words like Web programmin(BSP), Enterprise portals, BAPI, iViews etc. Is this the right path? Should I get a Java development job/contract in a company implementing SAP and then gradually move to the other areas, say CRM or BW? Isn't it a long and painful process? Is it that difficult for people get a break after doing a course in SAP BW or SAP CRM?

I have been developing in Java for the past six years and for the past three years in Web programming. I'm keen on upgrading to SAP. I have a BS and an MBA with 12 years in IT -- IT marketing for six years and IT development for six years. My past attempt at getting into SAP (in 1999) failed after I did a six-month intensive course in SAP ABAP/4 because of bad market situation.

I have gone through all of your postings especially those pertaining to Java. My conclusions from these postings...

are BW and CRM are high growth areas and are good options for me. Since getting a break in SAP is difficult, I need to map my current skills to position myself in the best area.

When researching Java skills, I have come across buzz words like Web programmin(BSP), Enterprise portals, BAPI, iViews etc. Is this the right path? Should I get a Java development job/contract in a company implementing SAP and then gradually move to the other areas, say CRM or BW? Isn't it a long and painful process? Is it that difficult for people get a break after doing a course in SAP BW or SAP CRM?

First of all, I congratulate you for reading my previous answers so thoroughly. That kind of diligence, combined with the motivation you have, should serve you very well in your career pursuits. And I agree that your analysis of the Java-related buzzwords are right on, and those, taken together, would be a good SAP career path.

CRM and BW are other options. The problem is this: You have stated correctly that you need to map your skills into a growth area within SAP, but you haven't told me enough about your current skills. Basically, your choice between SAP Web development, CRM, and BW should be dictated first and foremost by which area plays to your current strengths, and the second criteria is your interest level in each area. I would say that any path in SAP you choose will be long and occasionally painful. There is no "easy path" into SAP. SAP is not a get rich quick scheme any more, but a career path, and careers are hard work. Yes, it's tough to get a break just with training in a hot area like CRM. You need a more strategic approach and a lot more determination to break through. But doing your homework is a good place to start, and on that front, you're well on your way.

This was last published in May 2005

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