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Author's profile photo Heather Walker

Life at SAP – with Ansgar Ruhnau

One of the best ways to show what Life is like at SAP is to share our employee stories to provide insight into their experiences and what being successful means to us at SAP. I am Heather Walker, and I work on the Global Employer Branding team. Over the last few months I have had the opportunity to speak with 50 colleagues across our Europe, Middle East and Africa region to help share their stories. Here is one of those interviews:

Ansgar is HR’s youngest HR Director and located in The Netherlands, but how did he get to where he is now?

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I was always into adventure. Hence when growing up I dreamt of being an astronaut or a soldier. Later in school I discovered philosophy as a subject close to my heart and started seeking ways to channel my passion for ethics and social contract theory.

When did you start working at SAP?

I started in 2010 on an integrated degree and talent program.

What has been your career journey at SAP?

Following the Integrated Degree Program I became part of the HR Early Talent Program in 2013. From here I went on to Global Sustainability and then became a local HR Business Partner in Germany. In 2016 ran the Regional HR Office EMEA and MEE on an interim basis and helped to hire and on-board the HR Director. When she left in 2017 I took on the role permanently.

What experience did you need for your current job?

I am strong in delivering results and I know our HR processes by heart. I am also well connected in the business. One of my core areas of expertise is HR Systems & Analytics which nicely balances with my positive approach to people. I stand for a new and enthusiastic generation of HR people that offer innovative strategies and excellence in execution.

What are the key skills required in your role?

You must be able to deliver excellent advice and service to your business leaders and employees and be open minded and agile.

What does your career at SAP mean to you?

My job and SAP as such is a vehicle to me to make a positive impact on peoples’ lives. It starts with our employees inside SAP and translates to our customers and partners in the HR industry. SAP is a fantastic place with amazing colleagues who can change the world for better.

What does success look like to you?

The good thing about HR is that you are never done. My vision is to build the best organization for people to live and work together. So this will be a journey of a lifetime. I go home with a smile when I worked with my colleagues on a policy that promised to be a positive step in creating a better workplace.

If you could go back in time and give your 18-year-old-self one piece of career advice what would it be?

Impressing your boss is one thing, but having a vision for your job and making a positive impact to peoples’ lives is what makes great fun and a great career.

To see where Life at SAP could take you, click here.

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