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Author's profile photo Laure Cetin

Update on the Topic Leader contest 2011-2012

SCN is a large community and if you want to engage with the right people – the experts – you need to know how to find them. This was the reason why, several years ago, we decided to keep track of how many points people are scoring in various categories on SCN. Points are a way to evaluate someone’s expertise by looking at how much content the person has contributed on SCN. If you are active in spaces/communities on SCN you know how to find the experts: the Top Participants are listed on the overview page of each community. I encourage you to follow them and start connecting with them now!

The Context: Who are the Topic Leaders?

Each year we recognize the top 3 contributors in 43 selected areas of contribution (you can have a look at the winners in all categories for 2010-2011). It is a way for us to introduce the topic experts in the community and thank them for sharing their knowledge and helping their peers. We count how many points these people scored in the 43 categories over a 12-month period that runs from August 1 to July 31 the following year. All contributions (points) are taken into account: blogs, documents, wiki and discussion contributions (forums).

TechEd_13SEP2011_2098_TopicLeader.jpgThe winners are announced each year at the beginning of August; they benefit from enhanced exposure in the community and get a certificate per e-mail. I am working with SAP Education to see if we can offer certification vouchers to the Topic Leaders like in 2011. We do not give rewards such as a free TechEd pass, but for the Topic Leaders who are at the event there is the opportunity to be a star and jump on stage before the Demo Jam starts, and get some well deserved recognition from SCN executive Mark Yolton and SAP Mentors. Yes, pictures are taken πŸ˜‰ This year at TechEd there will be many onsite networking opportunities at the event and I look forward to meeting the new Topic Leaders in Las Vegas – and Madrid, if I get to go.

What changes with the New SCN?

As a reminder: We launched the new SCN on March 11, 2012.

For now, nothing changes

Over the past couple of months I talked with some of the 2010-2011 Topic Leaders and we agreed that it would be unfair to change the rules of the contest in the middle of it. Thank you Michal Krawczyk for providing valuable feedback and offering your help πŸ˜‰ Thank you Grzegorz Glowacki for pinging me regularly for an update πŸ˜‰

Here is what I need to do today to publish the list of the 2011-2012 Topic Leaders in early August:

In the new SCN we have over 400 spaces where people contribute and accrue points. These spaces are like categories, but obviously they need to be mapped to the old categories so that I can calculate the total number of points that people have in the 43 categories and recognize them as Topic Leaders.

To summarize:

August 1, 2011 to March 10, 2012 March 11, 2012 to July 31, 2012 Early August announcement blog
43 categories 400+ spaces to be mapped with the old 43 categories
3 topic leaders per category (3×43=129) 3 topic leaders per category (3×43=129) 129 Topic Leaders in the 43 categories

I know you are eager to track your progress and you miss the good old leaderboards we had in the old SCN. I am sorry that I cannot bring this transparency back at the moment, but I am working on it. You will have to do without the leaderboards for now and if you want to track your progress you can check how you are doing in the Top Participants widget.

And then?

The old point categories were not up-to-date when we launched the new SCN, and they were no longer representative of SAP expertise. I got a lot of feedback from you about this. It is obvious now that the Topic Leader recognition needs to be redesigned: with 400 spaces/communities on SCN I will introduce a better way to identify experts in broader categories. This effort will be part of a gamification project that I am leading this year: we are about to partner with one of the leading gamification platform vendors to introduce extensive game mechanics on SCN and track how our members are doing, encourage them to adopt the right behaviors and reward them along the way. Follow me to learn more about it as I will be sharing the progress via blog posts. As always, I welcome suggestions and feedback. Please feel free to comment in this blog or in my upcoming gamification blogs to suggest new ways to recognize experts in the community.

Read the Reputation Program Overview for more details, and don’t forget the FAQ – that should answer most of your questions.

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      Author's profile photo Vinod Kumar
      Vinod Kumar


      Appreciate your efforts on reputation program & certification vouchers to the Topic Leaders.  Hope the issues related to certification vouchers (Topic leaders 2011) Information of free certification exam will be resolved soon. 

      Regards, Vinod

      Author's profile photo Tom Cenens
      Tom Cenens

      Hello Vinod

      I had problems with my certification voucher but those are long solved. SAP education contacted SAP Belgium and made it possible for me to take the exam at SAP Belgium.

      Worked fine for me.

      Best regards


      Author's profile photo Vinod Kumar
      Vinod Kumar

      Hi Tom,

      Nice to hear that you could use the certification voucher. But many topic leaders from India are not able to use the certification voucher.

      Laure had taken up the issue with SAP education India as the problem is seems to be with Asia-Pacific region , but the issue remain unresolved.

      Regards, Vinod

      Author's profile photo Tom Cenens
      Tom Cenens

      Hi Vinod

      I couldn't use the voucher either. It's a matter of getting SAP Education to connect with Local SAP office. I'll see if I can help out somehow.

      Best regards


      Author's profile photo Former Member
      Former Member

      Hi Vinod

      the initiative was originally supposed to be a US initiative so Pearson VUE vouchers were provided. This meant that there were initial issues in India and Belgium as the Pearson VUE testing centers are not open in India ( they have since been opened up in Belgium) so that the vouchers could not be used. On realizing that the Indian contributors were put in touch with SAP Education in India who were able to give them a free test at one of their testing facilities. To my knowledge the problem was solved several months ago and your comment is the first that I have heard where this has apparently not been solved . Please send me specific details to my e-mail address if you are aware of unsolved issues in this reagard and I will be happy to discuss with my colleagues in India. Many thanks in advance Sue

      Author's profile photo Ramesh Babu Nagarajan
      Ramesh Babu Nagarajan

      Hi Laure,

      I have been an on & off participant in SCN forums, but always have a feeling that how the top point holders have so much time to spend on SCN forums to collect the points they have done on a consistent basis. Some times I used to see them responding to queries right through the day. One thing that stands out is that they are people who are passionate about helping others while the fact is that this open knowledge sharing is making the new kids on the block an easy way out, but at the same time without this support SCN will have very less participation.

      Anyway my 3 cheers to the top contributors, they indeed need to be recognized and this change should encourage more to contribute and enlarge the pie for such contributions.

      Author's profile photo Lukas Weigelt
      Lukas Weigelt

      Hey Laure,

      thanks for a job well done, giving these topic leaders a part of appreciation they deserve. Also I'm looking forward to (also in a questioning way πŸ˜‰ ):

      >>with 400 spaces/communities on SCN I will introduce a better way to identify experts in >>broader categories. This effort will be part of a gamification project that I am leading this year:

      My personal kudos to Siddharth Rajora, also on the list of 2010-2011, who helped me out on the HCM ESS Subforums a great many times!

      Cheers, Lukas