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SAP technical management

Tired of working hands on? Expert Jon Reed divulges the path for a Basis administrator to advance into management.

I've worked with SAP software since 1994 primarily in the Basis arena -- Basis, system architect, sizing, system planning. My last install was Enterprise 4.7. I have moved away from being hands on over the last couple of years, and I'm wondering about the market for Basis managers. Would it make sense to attend the NetWeaver/Portal seminar and get back into the fold? NetWeaver seems to be a hot item right now.

Technical management is not a bad area to get into. I wouldn't say it's red hot but it's not bad at all. With your deep experience you could do well. Yes, you are correct, you'll need NetWeaver know-how to get back in. I'm not sure that attending a seminar would be enough to get you back in, but it might be a first step.

What I would suggest is to take the seminar, and then apply to technical lead jobs with companies running on versions of SAP 4.7 or lower that are going to upgrade soon. This way perhaps you can get a hands-on lead role in an upgrade cycle, and in the meantime, your skills will be a great fit with the companies you apply to.

I think you'll have more trouble finding work with companies on 5.0 or 6.0, as they will have moved beyond where you are at skill-wise. You may have to step back, in a sense, in order to move forward, but given your deep SAP technical background I'll bet you can pull it off.

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