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Enterprise Portals vs. WAS and BI

I have about 9 years experience in SAP. I started with ABAP, ALE and Workflow, then put in 2 years in ITS and another 2 year in Enterprise Portals (EP5). I am not sure if it is a good idea to continue with Portals or move towards WAS or Business Intelligence areas.
There's certainly nothing wrong with a Portals niche right now; I would put it in my top five SAP skills niches for the next two years. Of course, Portals is a little risky because we still haven't seen the surge in Portals projects we all expected by now. And of course, ABAP work on Portals is not generally extensive (most of the best Portals folks I know are Basis consultants). Since you have the ITS background already, I could see Web Application Server as a logical extension of that focus. The good thing about the Web App Server is that every company that upgrades to 4.7 will be dealing with it. On the other hand, it's the Basis folks who are best positioned for Web App Server project roles. BW seems interesting, as you could combine your knowledge of how data is presented (Portals) with how data is integrated (BW) on the back end. I think you're on the right track as you attempt to build on your Portals skills with something more universal. Getting involved in BW and SAP data integration is one thing to think about. Also, don't forget about the option of mastering Java, XML, SOAP, and other skills that would enable you to be on the forefront of the SAP Web services push. Few SAP users are doing SAP Web services projects right now, but that will change.
This was last published in August 2003

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