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Know where you stand with your current employeer

Even SAP professionals can be forced to work outside of their SAP domain. Expert Jon Reed advises how to confront this situation.

Hi, I have over 16 years of IT experience of which over 10 years has been SAP Basis job related functions. I currently work for a company where I have to wear several hats every day supporting not only the SAP environment but also other applications. I feel like I am losing ground on my SAP skills. I have had little opportunity to get my hands dirty with the Enterprise Portal yet. After putting in couple of years with my current role, I am at a crossroad. I want to stay in the SAP world and not switch careers at this time but would like to move out of the back-end technical role into more functional role. Kindly advice.

I always think that the best thing to do is to "exhaust the possibilities" with your current employer. So, without...

telling them you are thinking of leaving, it is generally a good tactic for someone in your situation to have a "sit down" with your manager and ask what the possibilities are for greater SAP exposure. Depending on how that conversation goes, you will have a good idea of where you stand.

If you know that the SAP side of your role won't expand, then, without revealing your plans, you should start working on a exit plan. Start putting your resume out there and see if you can generate interviews and job offers for SAP-specific positions. If you can do that, then that's good news, and you can take the next good SAP offer you get. If, on the other hand, you have trouble generating interest in your resume for SAP jobs, you have a bigger challenge on your hands. In that case, you will have to think more carefully about the tradeoffs between your current job and what other employers are looking for. You may identify some skills gaps that need to be filled. That is a trickier thing to do, but I try to answer questions on that topic so keep reading.

This was last published in September 2006

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