Why SAP Skills Matter—In Any Economy
JonERP_TechEd.jpgAs we enter 2010, SAP careers are at a crossroads. Gone are the breathless proclamations of massive SAP skills shortages. SaaS vendors have stormed onto the scene, taking buzz away from SAP careers by implying that a future in SAP may not be as rock solid as we once thought. SAP customers continue to push the staffing envelope with global sourcing of SAP skills.

We are also seeing the first cloud-based services firms, as well as the addition of "virtual help desks" by established SAP services providers. Fresh approaches bring new ways of hiring SAP consultants, but that does not necessarily mean SAP professionals will see an increase in demand or a bump in salary as a result.

Despite these shifts, the SAP career outlook in 2010 presents many opportunities for the savvy SAP professional. Increasingly, the two main components of a successful SAP career-skills acquisition and self-marketing-are becoming intertwined. Community participation on social networks provides SAP professionals with a whole new way of approaching their careers. There is a catch. Capitalizing on these changes requires both a shift in mindset and a re-evaluation of the skills typically considered to be the key to SAP marketability.

In this two part white paper series, exclusively written for the SAP SCN Career Center, I'll provide an outlook of the SAP skills I expect to be in demand in 2010. I will present these emerging skills in a context of so-called "career best practices" I have identified from my conversations with SAP professionals and hiring managers. I have intentionally structured this paper to be relevant to a range of experience levels.

You are currently reading part one of this two part white paper series. In part one, I'll explain how to define a winning skills strategy for 2010. Part two looks at the changing rules for marketing those skills in the social networking era. In part two, I'll also include a view of some of the "hot" SAP skills for 2010 in light of these business trends.

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