My first eight months as ABAP developer
Hello to all SAP people and to those who want to become one.
While I was reading discussions on Career place on SCN, I realize that entering the SAP world isn’t so easy and that beside extensive knowledge one must also have luck. So I have a need to tell how I’m end up here in SAP.
When I finished my master studies as Engineer of Information Systems, I started looking for a job primarily for Java developers. I’ve had enough experience with both Java SE and Java EE and also with Web development and little with Android development and I’ve searched that kind of jobs.
In my country, SAP isn’t present at academic institutions so I’ve just heard of SAP and have no idea what it really is. And then I saw a job ad on our local job searching site for ABAP developer. I didn’t know back then even what ABAP is, but I fit in the prerequisites and it was SAP related so I thought why not try.
I went to some testing first, personality and IQ and things like that, which was amusing by the way, and then to real interview with experienced SAP consultants. Before I went to interview I try to read about and explore SAP world as much as I could, even tried to install ABAP Netweaver application server on my local machine, just to see how it feels working in SAP environment. Off course, I didn’t make it with Netweaver 😆
But regardless, that attempt was a huge bonus for me on the interview and something which made me stand out from other candidates. So I’ve got the job.
At the same time, I went to others interviews and almost got the job as Java developer in one of the most respectable company from that domain which probably many of you knows about, but I canceled last interview because I already accepted this job and my intuition told me that SAP is the best choice for me. In the beginning of my SAP career I often regret for that choice but after a while I realized that my intuition was right. Now I’m more than happy because I have the guts to listen to it.
First three months on the job was very hard. I had to prove myself, to show that I can quickly begin to participate in ongoing projects. I had big problems to accept new programming language and the way the things are done in SAP: concepts, environment, workspace and so on. Attributes and tables names was a huge wtf for me at the time 😆
But I was persistent, I studied and read all that I could find, books, pdf-s, tutorials and forums. Can remember going to sleep after a whole day of learning and when I close my eyes all I can see is words, graphics, tons of code, that keep me restless all night long. I was overloaded with informations.
Then I started to get specific tasks, like reports and programs for our clients, and was always looking to finish them before the deadline. Also, I payed great attention to the user interface and user experience. I wanted to simplify the use of the program as much as possible and make it more intuitive for the average user. I strived to implement enjoy controls wherever I could and to create more and more reusable codes. Over time, my programs become larger and more complex and I find myself having great satisfaction after each well done project. Whenever I had free time I experiment with different SAP technologies that we didn’t use, like Web Dynpro, ABAP in Eclipse, HANA or wasn’t included in my job description, like Business Intelligence, Business Objects, enhancements in MM and SD modules and so on. I felt comfortable in all that technologies stack and always want to explore more and further.
Then one day, my superior told me that one of our clients want mobile application for one of our custom programs that I made. That was excellent news for me. Mobile technologies interested me very much and I thought that I will never have a chance to work professionally with Android platform. And now is all started to make sense and coming to its place.
I immediately started to explore Sybase Unwired Platform. We bought two SAP Press books about mobile and I create Cloudshare account for trial SUP platform and started learning. Beside that I still worked on ongoing projects and develop programs and reports for our clients.
One of the benefits of being a developer is that you get different devices from time to time, like tablet or mobile phone or better laptop. It is a very good practice from the perspective of management that strengthens the bond between the company and the employee. Satisfied employee is loyal to his company and he will easier bear with temptation of maybe better job opportunities. On the other hand, company cares and helps to grow to those employees who show initiative and are willing to take responsibility.
About a month ago I started to learn SAP HANA and enrolled in a course for HANA development in cloud on openSAP.com. We don’t have HANA in my company but my idea is to show to my superiors that we could develop HANA applications in cloud as well as mobile applications on SMP and sell it worldwide via SAP Store. The time of SAP ERP implementations is passing as the market get saturated and we need to adopt a new business models. In the near future, only those consulting companies, SAP partners that can keep pace with SAP and rapid changes on the market will survive. What will they do when there isn’t any company left that need SAP ERP or CRM implementation? Mobile, HANA and BI are the most likely answers.
I hope that this blog had a motivating effect on you, and that will encourage you to explore and learn with children’s curiosity, which was my goal. Once I participated in a discussion on Career place about the inability to obtain satisfaction in SAP. The man who started discussion had the impression that SAP is a complete and finished system with nothing to do in it but to adjust and maintain. Oh how wrong he was! 😀
Thank you for reading and have a great day!