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FI or CO certification

I got certified in SAP FICO 3.0d in 1997. Since then I have been working in SAP, last release was 4.6c. I would like to get re-certified . I am completely confused on what certifications to get. Should I get certfied on FI or CO? Which version of SAP (4.6c, 4.7/SEM, mySAP Financials)? Which certificate has the most value in the job market?

It's good that you're thinking about new certifications. Of course, hands-on project experience in the latest version...

of SAP is even more important than certification. The good thing is that you do have hands-on 4.6C experience, so you're already pretty current. As long as you understand that certification is not a guarantee of anything, I think it's great that you are willing to invest in your own training and put yourself in the best position possible. Given the fact that training and certification is expensive, I think the best option is to focus your training dollars on new areas of SAP that you haven't conquered yet. This makes sense - after all, an SEM certification, or a mySAP Financials certification, is going to look a lot better than a basic 4.6 certification on your resume. And you're probably going to enjoy learning about the new areas more as well.

As far as your options are concerned, I'm not sure why you lumped 4.7 and SEM together, I would consider those separate certification options unless I am mistaken. Because SAP executives are emphasizing mySAP Financials over 4.7 Enterprise, even going so far as to say imply the 4.7 release might have been a mistake, I would rule out 4.7 and choose between an SEM and a mySAP Financials certification. Here, you have a hard choice. I like SEM in general because it represents a strategic component and a chance to learn how to bring all the financial data in SAP together to provide a whole new level of value to companies. The consultants who can help companies do that should be in demand for years in the future. On the other hand, SEM still has a pretty limited market acceptance and the SEM projects are mostly going to consultants with senior-level SEM experience. And this is the problem with your question. You have asked me about the value of certifications in the job market. In terms of SEM, if you go out and get certified, you are still not likely to win an SEM project from the seasoned SEM consultants who are out there now. (If you want to learn more on the SEM consulting market, check out the major interview on SEM consulting skills I published on www.mySAPcareers.com). On the other hand, a mySAP Financials certification might help you a bit more in the job market, because very few consultants have such a certification. True, there are very few mySAP Financials projects out there, but that is going to change. This is a core release that most SAP customers will eventually migrate to. And whenever the skills demand is high, the value of certification goes up. Once the experienced consultants are snapped up, those with certification in the new stuff and relevant hands-on skills in the old stuff are next in line. So, hopefully that gives you a better sense of your options and the value of certifications in the FI/CO market.

This was last published in February 2004

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