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Transferring from one ERP package to another

I am a Baan consultant for the last 5 years. I had about 17 years of functional experience in sales before I moved into the Baan career. Though I started as a sales and distribution consultant, I learned the manufacturing modules of Baan and went on to complete APICS' CPIM certification. I now want to make a career move to SAP. I seek your advice as what would be the best choice for me. I have been considering getting into BW.

Dear Jon,
I am a Baan consultant for the last 5 years. I had about 17 years of functional experience in sales before I moved into the Baan career. Though I started as a sales and distribution consultant, I learned the manufacturing modules of Baan and went on to complete APICS' CPIM certification. I now want to make a career move to SAP. I seek your advice as what would be the best choice for me. I have been considering getting into BW.
Unfortunately, transferring careers from one ERP package to another is not as easy as it should be. You would think companies would see a lot of relevance between working on Baan and working on SAP, but it doesn't always play out that way. Nevertheless, you do have a lot of skills that would be valuable in a SAP environment, so with some perseverance, you might well be able to make a move. In terms of which areas of SAP to move into, you may want to look into SAP CRM. Although you do have some supply chain experience, the bulk of your industry experience relates to sales, so you might really find a niche as a SAP CRM consultant. Keep in mind you could also pursue BW, and there are customer analytics within BW, and integration between BW and CRM, that would help you to pursue both areas. But if push comes to shove, I like CRM better than BW for you. SAP is not that easy to break into, and so the more you can "pull in" your previous experience into your SAP work, the better your chances are to break into SAP and to excel once you make the transition.
This was last published in October 2004

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