What is a bdoc?
A while back somebody posted the question what is a bdoc in the SAP CRM area. As a new CRM moderator, it caused quite a quandry for myself. This question really presents a problem on whether it should be answered, deleted, or moved to place for it to get less than useful answers. Personally I don’t know how to answer the question politely and not lie in the process. The problem is that in an expert forum you expect people to speak the same lingua franca in that area. In the whole area of SAP CRM if you are a technical or functional expert on the solution and don’t understand that concept(bdoc) you should not be working on the solution. The reason being is that is considered “fundamental knowledge”. So my next question is should the “expert” forums be the place to gather fundamental knowledge?
Let’s face it, gathering knowledge on SAP products pre-SCN was almost mission impossible for the general population. You needed to take a $3000+ course, get a hold of a help cd or buy one of the five overview books available on the product. The help cd was considered the holy grail, because theory on how the system works was located there. The help never told you exactly how to configure or write something, but why/how it should be written. IMHO it was the cliff notes for the system design blueprint. As SCN came along a lot more online knowledge became available and the forums became a place to discover and share information. Even the holy grail of the help cd’s were available on http://help.sap.com. E-learning also appeared, giving a lot less excuses on not having access to methods to get fundmental knowledge.
So if I had to re-learn my CRM knowledge today, how would I do it without asking fundamental questions first:
My steps to the so called “enlightenment”
1. First I would read all the documentation on SAP CRM at http://help.sap.com frontwards and backwards.
2. I would purchase or get it from a public library all the SAP Press books on SAP CRM and read them frontwards and backwards at least twice.
3. If I had access to service marketplace, I would review all the documentation located at http://service.sap.com/crm
4. If I could afford it, I would buy access all the RKT material on SAP CRM startting at CRM 40 and building on each release at http://service.sap.com/okp
5. I would review all the information on the CRM wiki until I had a headache
6. I would read all the solved questions on SCN about CRM in the forums and all the knowledge articles and blogs until my head explodes
7. Finally take some SAP CRM training courses if you have the time or the money
During steps 1 through 7 I would find access to a SAP CRM sandbox system to practice and explore the concepts that I have learned
8. Find an experienced SAP CRM consultant to become my mentor and guide me through further on steps one through seven
Once I completed steps one through seven, then only would I start posting on SCN forums questions about CRM. I would also limit those questions to applying the theory I learned to the practical issues that I need solve. I would also when comfortable discuss parts of the theory of the solution. How many of us are guilty of posting/answering questions that should have been resolved by performing steps one through seven of the process? I know I was personally guilty of giving people the “fish” instead of teaching them how to fish.
The secret formula
I personally follow this process all the time and thus limited my personal questions on the forums to when steps one through seven fail. Last year I invested the time and the effort to learn the new web UI client and CRM 52/2007 webclient customizing without asking questions in the forum as my training device. Instead I learned via answering questions instead! It is amazing how much you can learn by researching the topic at hand, instead of letting someone else solve it for you. The old saying of “No Pain, No Gain” is so true.
You now have my “secret recipe” on how to become more knowledgable on CRM. I hope and expect those of you posting in the CRM forums will challenge yourself to learn in this fashion. Please keep in mind I’m not saying don’t ask questions when you get stuck, but really challenge yourself to answer your question first, before posting.
The answer to the question
So back to my original question on what is a BDOC. The SAP help link shows the answer: