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SAP SCN Podcast Transcripts

Starting in December of 2007, Jon began a multi-year series of podcasts with the SAP SCN Community team. Many of these have their own transcripts, which you can view here. If you want to check out all the SAP SCN podcasts and download them, go to the SAP SCN Podcast Page.
The Launch of the SAP Career Center on SCN - Podcast Transcription Print E-mail
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Podcast Transcription: The Launch of the SAP Career Center on SCN: An SCN Community Podcast with Claudine Lagerholm, Senior Product Manager with SAP
Hosted by Jon Reed of
Podcast Interview Date: August 15, 2009

Jon Reed: Hi, this is Jon Reed of and I'd like to welcome you to this podcast from the SAP Community Network. In this edition, Claudine Lagerholm, a Senior Product Manager with SAP, is going to give us an inside view on an important new area launched within SDN, the SAP Career Center. The timing is certainly right to have another avenue to pursue opportunities, and perhaps the most intriguing part is the potential to connect the SAP job search with active involvement in SDN. We'll explore that connection today.

Let's kick it off by asking you about this exciting launch of the Career Center and what SDN visitors can expect when they visit for the first time.

Claudine Lagerholm: This is a very exciting new initiative. We're looking to bring together employers and applicants in the extended SAP Ecosystem worldwide and, for those listeners who may not be familiar with the term "ecosystem," it refers to SAP's extended network, which includes partners, customers, vendors, consultants and others. All these folks are connected to SAP in some way: either they're doing business with us or they're connected to SAP. So it's a very specialized career site just for this audience.

The URL is The Career Center is free of charge to all applicants. It has a very easy URL and it really only takes a few minutes to register and to upload your resume. We encourage all folks in the community who are looking for jobs that require SAP-related skills to check it out.

Reed: Yeah, I actually uploaded my resume; it was pretty smooth and it was fun to fill out my profile, so you definitely made it friendly. A lot of thought went into the context of creating this Career Center and making it relevant, so I wanted to start by asking you about the trends you see today that you think are impacting SAP recruiting.

Lagerholm: We're seeing a couple trends, mainly around HR and recruiters using social networking sites for recruitment, and this is something new that's happening in the industry. We're seeing that in blogs, in community sites that may be integrated to recruitment or standalone, but the general trend is that companies out there are using social networking for recruitment. What I find interesting is that it's not just IT companies.

For example, the US Army started recruiting on Facebook. When I first read this, I thought this is kind of interesting and different. But when you think about it, the US Army is looking for young people and young people love Facebook. From that perspective, it's kind of a natural fit.

We're seeing the same demands in the SAP Community Network: the potential employers who are members of SCN have started posting positions in our forums. They really want to reach out to the SCN community and find qualified applicants, so they started posting in the forum, which is not the right venue, so those postings had to be deleted. Now we're going to offer a formal program on SCN as a natural extension to the community network where we formally bring the employer and the applicant together.

Reed: Now, I want to talk about both sides of that equation because for the Career Center to work, it has to work for both the employers and those who are seeking jobs. Let's talk about the employers. It's not always easy for smaller service firms to find the right talent mix: you don't want to wind up with people on the bench, but you also don't want to be scrambling for resources. So how do you think the SAP Career Center can help firms who are in this situation?

Lagerholm: We've had feedback from a lot of our service partners for quite some time that it's difficult to find the right talent, and that's the case even in this economy. Smaller service firms may not have a very well established brand name; they may only work in a small geographic area and they don't have a lot of money to spend on HR and recruitment. So the career side gives them an opportunity to get their name out.

They can use the Career Center forum to interact with candidates; they can answer questions; they can provide additional information about the companies; they can also leverage other parts of SCN, such as Ecohub. An Ecohub partner can gain additional visibility and build up their brand name as well. It's really about leveraging the community to allow for interaction between the employer and the applicant that you don't find on typical career sites out there.

Reed: One of the challenges you faced is that you really designed this to work for employers of all sizes and both permanent and contract openings, and then there's this question of the advantages of locating this on SCN. How can hiring managers use this Career Center in a new way to perhaps get a feel for candidates based on their SCN involvement?

Lagerholm: The Career Center allows the employer to be very targeted in their recruitment. Since it only focuses on SAP-related positions, one of the main benefits is that you're not going to get a lot of clutter out there. If you use other career sites, you might get thousand of resumes and applications that are completely unrelated. One of the main benefits for us is that we eliminate a lot of the clutter.

The second benefit is that once you start talking to an applicant, you can get a sense for the depth of their knowledge by looking at the applicant's participation in our community. We have a lot of members who are very active, who post very detailed technical responses in the forum, who build e-learning, who have been very involved in helping others in the community. The Career Center really gives the employer a much more in-depth view of the candidates if the candidate also happens to participate in our community. That is a huge differentiator for the employer.


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