Hi Jon,
I have been doing pre-sales for 5 years. I have good business knowledge and experience in the sales process, as well as technical expertise. I have recently become certified in SD 4.6C in the UK.

However, I am finding it hard to get into the market. I'm even lowering my salary a lot, just to get on board any project, or do any SAP work. There is a lot of SAP work in the UK and Europe at the moment.

Do I need to keep persevering until "something gives"?

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I wasn't really aware that you could lower your salary to get a new job. :) I think you meant to say that you were lowering your salary requirements. You may be surprised to learn that this is not usually they key to landing a new SAP job. It's good to have flexibility on compensation, but the key to landing a new SAP job is having the level of SAP skills the market demands. This is a very mature SAP market, and "certification only" applicants are rarely in demand and rarely hired. What you may need to do is rethink your approach, and figure out how you can approach the SAP market from a position of strength. For you, that would mean trying to leverage your pre-sales experience. How about applying for pre-sales positions at SAP-related firms? There are a huge number of SAP-related third party vendors, and the vast majority of them have pre-sales roles that you would be a lot more qualified for than a senior SD functional position. Whenever a job transition is too hard, try to divide it into two steps. In your case, this means become an SAP pre-sales consultant first, and from there, try to transition into a functional consulting role. This approach will take more time, but it might ease your current frustrations. Good luck!

This was first published in July 2004

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