7 Career Insights from SAP Mentors & Champions for the Next-Gen

Originally published on the SAP Community

Now is a great time to pursue that high quality job that puts technology and related business skills and interests into action.

The tech sector’s long-term outlook continues to grow with many compelling career opportunities both now and into the future.

With the demand for reliable, skilled business and IT workers on the rise, now’s the time to write down your vision of a great position and set a path forward.

Unquestionably, SAP is one of the best career options. With over 105,000 employees, 22,000 partners, and a customer base generating 87% of total global commerce in over 180 countries, there are many opportunities.

Of course, there is competition for the best jobs, and you want to be prepared to get traction versus settling for just any position. So, what’s the best approach?

The SAP Community, with over 3 million users, recently published Spotlight Interviews with SAP Mentors who are top influencers representing customers, partners, and consultants.

In their interviews, the Community team asked the Mentors for their advice and insights for students and recent graduates to secure SAP and related IT and business jobs to help jumpstart their careers.

Top 7 SAP Mentor Insights

1. Learning is the “Secret Sauce”

Paul Hardy: My advice to young people just starting out in IT is a “secret sauce” which is not so secret. It’s simply this – take a little time each week outside of work to learn new things. If you spend even half an hour each week, you will be half an hour up on all the people who just play computer games or watch Netflix in their spare time.

Narasimha (Simha) Magal – The core advise is always the same: Technologies change constantly, so students must be lifelong learners. However, knowledge of how a technology works is never sufficient. What is critical is to understand why a particular technology is useful to an organization and be able to use the technologies to improve business processes.

Karen Rodrigues: First, improve skills as needed and fill gaps you have in relation to the new area you want to work in. Also, make sure you have a mentor, a person who can support you in this journey. Finally, make sure you understand that you will need to work hard to achieve what you want.

2. Build a Network

Peter Langner: Take the chance to build a network during your studies. Look for educational opportunities around your interests. Regarding SAP, there are training and certification possibilities for students which cost very little money. Take advantage of openSAP courses, visit SAP Community Inside Track events, and connect with experts and experienced professionals. Find a coach or advisor by looking out for them at a user group of your country.

Derek Loranca: Networking is still key, so finding and participating in community-centric data events (like hackathons or user group meetings) allows students to meet and greet with professionals.

3. Find Mentors and Coaches

Heather Hill: Don’t be afraid to ask for help along the way. Mentors and coaches can help you grow not only your technical skills but your soft skills as well.

4. Hands on Experience is Key

Abdulbasit Gulsen: I can assure that making a small effort in the beginning to get hands on experience, will make a big difference and positively impact your career journey.

5. A Balance Between Humanity and Technology Creates Opportunity

Robert Eijpe: The possibilities with technology in the digital age are moving fast. There needs to become a new balance between humanity on one side, and intelligence, machinery, and artificial intelligence on the other side.

6. The Need for Integration

Daniel Graversen: There will always be a need for integration because more systems will always pop up. I talk to a lot of people about ABAP (Advanced Business Application Programming), SAP integration, and business process career opportunities.

7. Be Curious. Have a Great Attitude.

Tamas Szirtes: It’s about being curious, passionate, building a habit to learn and share, going the extra mile, and selecting a matching career strategy.

Graham Robinson: First, you need to be curious – and act on it. Second, you need to be a true professional. That means properly learning and constantly improving your skills. It also means acting professionally and with integrity.

Simon To: I have always advised new graduates to focus on or to develop quality problem-solving skills. That is the most sought-after skillset. The CEO of one of my previous employers has told us this: “Hire for Attitude and Train for Skill.” That is so true.

What inspires you when you think about SAP and related careers?

Please share your comments below.

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