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To fail or not to fail – that is not the question? But to understand is the case!

First a short story describing – why certification does not solve everything. Almost 12 years ago I left the military – to follow a study named Marketing Economist, it was a huge change, meeting undisciplined students. A few of them were disciplined  – especially one, let’s call him Andy. It is not me. Together with him I attended a class which ran for a full year, it was feared because of its complexity. It was statistical analysis – if you failed you could not proceed to the next semester.

I assisted Andy with understanding statistical analysis; I used a lot of hours helping him and others.

But one day Andy said the following, which is relevant for the way we certify our consultants today;

  • Anders, I do not wish to understand statistical analysis. I just wish to pass the exam!

I think that we have the same issue with the current certification process; The target must never be just to pass the certification. But to understand and being able to advise the SuccessFactors customer.

But okay I passed my certification this week in SuccessFactors Onboarding, a certification I failed in the first run. Did I learn something in the second run? Yes I learned to use an app webpage named – to produce Flashcards for memorizing the material at hand.

Do I find certification process fair and rewarding? Short answer to that is no, but is there another way to do the certification. No not currently – unless you have a suggestion to SAP SuccessFactors. So there is only the hard way, memorizing until you fall asleep over the printed 700 pages document.

The SuccessFactors Onboarding certification is one out of my certifications within the SAP area;

  • SAP Certified Associate Business Foundation & Integration with SAP ERP
  • SAP Certified Application Associate – Human Capital Management with SAP ERP
  • THR91 SuccessFactors Onboarding

And grandfathered:

  • THR89 SuccessFactors Workforce Analytics & Planning Academy
  • THR83 SuccessFactors Recruiting Management
  • THR84 SuccessFactors Recruiting Marketing

Other areas not relating to SAP area;

  • ITIL Foundation
  • PRINCE2 Foundation.

The above have been expensive in time and money, who will succeed to transform from the On-premise setup. Were a certification wasn´t necessary or needed to be a consultant. Not all consultant will make the transformation, I also fear when the Delta Certifications will start to be released for the above areas. Will there be any consultants that is able to handle more than one area of SuccessFactors. That will be the solution for a lot of consultants – specialization. Unless you wish to use a lot of time educating yourself in your spare time. But some of us have kids, dogs and a wife we would like to keep. Okay some would like a new wife – but not me. She is okay…

Today I have started to prepare for the next certification – which is Successfactors Employee Central. Is planning to take the test late June, for that purpose I have started the Quizlet Class for Employee Central. You can join here – if you wish to contribute with flashcards send me a mail or message. And I will give permission to add content to the material covering Employee Central

Anders – now studying for the Employee Central – what will be next.

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  • Hi Anders,

    I can relate to your experience and really thanks for this initiative where you are helping the community learn as well.


    Vivek Barnwal

  • Nice job with this Anders and I have been pretty vocal on my thoughts regarding certification and delta certification over the years as well as I think there is a better way.

    The good news is the SAP/SF is listening around delta certification and will roll out some major (positive) changes later this year.  Details are still being finalized so it is not public yet.

  • I could not agree more.

    Nowadays, hands-on experience is way more valuable than a certification. Unfortunately SF is still centralized by SAP, therefore it is quite difficult to acquire valuable experience without certification. Hopefully in the near future this will not be the case and independent consultancy firms will be able to hire junior personnel to do the "dirty work" as well as avoiding some of the problems a centralized implementation can bring.

    • Perhaps a "back door" will open in the future - in the long run provisioning as we know it will die. And the Super Administrator will solve a lot of the current provisioning task --> the wild west for independent consultants will come again. 😎 😎

  • Hi there,

    I found your quizlet for EC and it is awesome! A major thank you for putting so much content into such readable/usable flashcards. It's extremely helpful and will be one of my go-to study tools for the cert. exam prep.