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The link between skills and pay : new trends that are influencing people’s career decisions

This weekend I got a mail in my inbox. I assumed it was spam, however something caught my eye. The title stated: IT skills and certification pay index ( trademarked by the company that sent me the mail ) Now some you might now I have been actively writing about the BPX role and together with people like Jon Reed ( The end of ABAP, the SAP skill set is changing ), we have been hinting that a new world might be coming.

Some very interesting statements were made in the article/press release. here is a quick summary of what caught my eye:

* Management, process and methodology Average pay on top of base salary rose 16% in the last two years , and Enterprise Business Application knowledge grew 26% in the last two years, being the two largest pay increase categories in Non Certified IT skills (page 6)

* Top sub categories from above were: ERP, CRM, Project Management and Business Intelligence Skills  (page 7)

 * Certified and Non Certified skills have become as important ; Historically it was important to have certified skills to have more pay, however over the last 8 years that gap has been closed (page 16) and now it seems even that Noncertified IT Skills Pay Growing Five Times Faster than Certification Pay:

* Microsoft Visio has become less important  (page 9) and customers are less willing to pay for that skill

Another quote that struck me was: “Technical skills are without a doubt critical for many IT jobs, but there’s much more. Being a desirable ‘impact’ worker means getting along with people, keeping an eye on IT’s role in business execution and quickly delivering what customers want, which is a moving target. It is about understanding the industry you’re working in and focusing on solutions”

I really link this to our notion of the BPXer: bridging the gap between business and IT and trying to have the skills that can bridge those perceived historical gaps.

On top of that, consider the discussions about the Is There Really an SAP Skills Shortage? noted by customers of IT solutions in general. All very interesting trends, to take into account when you as a person are thinking about your future, your career, your family and what you like and skills that you want or already have.

Hopefully you see that the BPX community we are trying to create and nurture is a place where people can enhance and exchange their knowledge, their BPX skills ( and there are many… not all mentioned/considered in the benchmark article above ). We are trying to provide a place for many where we use the power of the crowd to share knowledge. A good starting point for those who have not yet done so is to read my other blog on BPX education and certification that I wrote a month or two ago, that pulls otgether a lot of other articles and blogs in the community on BPX education. 

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  • Better pay rates are probably the best incentives to consider being a BPX. However, I wonder if the approach like “ABAP is nearing end of life” is the right way to push people along this path. I would think this would just push a large part of potential candidates on the defensive.

    I am curious to see who will make the transition faster – will techies gain business knowledge faster or will suits learn technology aspects faster? Or will it be equally easy/difficult for both sets?

    I know of a boutique in Heidelburg that did this very very effectively. Everyone started as programmers, and then after one full life cycle project – they were put as consultants to assist a senior functional guy on a module on a part time bsis. Then they got independent charge of a module, and then moved on to other modules. It was amazing that after 5 years or so – this firm competed really well with more established firms solely on the merit of its BPX like consultants.

    • Vijay, I personally did not imply that ABAP is nearing the end of life; Jon Reed did. I do think there will be a move to less code and more enterprise services related composition in the next 10 years. I do not anticipate that pure coding will ever go away. I think there is a shift as per my blog. Your question on techie going business versus business going techie, I think is pure speculative one, and it depends really on the person and their current skill sets and how much they want or need to invest to gain those skills.

      • Marco – I just made the comment about ABAP dying because you quoted Mr.Reed in your blog!

        I do agree that my question is speculative. but then again, isnt most of these discussions speculative anyways? no one really knows what will happen in 10 years 🙂

        • I remember Jon (and others) making similar statements about ABAP around 10 years ago; I guess we’ll still be hearing them in 10 years’ time… 😉