For most people I think 2019 was a seriously tough year to get through, for me it was quite mixed. I had some very big challenges on some of the projects I worked on in 2019 and for the most part had some good outcomes. There were projects that had more serious challenges for a number of different reasons – which will be the topic of a separate blog post I am currently working on. But overall 2019 was a rewarding year and I got to work with some new clients which was a bonus. I hope this continues in 2020! There were some great highs for me with the pinnacle being attending the SAP TechEd conference in Las Vegas where I met a large number of SAP Community members I have conversed with over the years (yes, most on Twitter!!). This was a fantastic experience! Additionally, being invited into the SAP Champions program and being presented with my SAP Champions t-shirt in Las Vegas was also a career highlight. Another highlight was having two SAP Community speaking sessions (in Las Vegas) and while attendance at the sessions was not huge it was still a really good experience for me.
I am really passionate about the SAP Community and cannot wait to get stuck into a whole lot of activities in 2020! Watch out for these. Really thankful for the support from all of the Developer advocates as well as the SAP Community leaders including Craig Cmehil, Katarina Nonhebel and Mynyna Chau.
Some of the other highlights included being invited on the SAP Cloud Platform podcast series (you can find here) as well as the Coffee Corner Radio podcasts (you can find here). My specific session for the SAPCP podcast is here and I was invited on to talk about the use of the SAP Cloud Platform diagrams for architecture and solution options from a customer perspective. I have been using these great diagrams for a number of years so it was amazing to share my passion with other community members. This was really cool. My specific Coffee Corner Radio podcast is here where I was invited on to talk about my SAP Community blog of Like..Follow…Comment…REPEAT etc. The idea behind the blog post was to bolster activity through actions! Liking blogs, following Community members or tags (topics) as well as providing your view via comments. I really enjoyed writing the blog and also enjoyed talking about it on the Coffee Corner Radio. Both were great experiences – thanks again to Moya Watson, Jakob Marius Kjær , and Simon Kemp for having me on the podcasts.
From a professional perspective I worked on a large number of projects in 2019 for a number of different clients, some of them new clients. My main role was to architect solutions within SAP Cloud Platform connecting to backend SAP systems as well as incorporating the use of external API’s to enrich the functionality.
For the most part I achieved this with some seriously intricate architectures and solutions – some of which will be going live in the next month or so.
In 2020 I still plan to be in this area however want more time to go deeper with solution options – to make sure the solution architecture is fit for purpose, is the best use of the components, is forward thinking, flexible, agile and robust. Some of this can be achieved by looking through different options and weighing them up – a sort of matrix of solution options I can use to determine the most feasible. Additionally, would be good to get into the S/4HANA space – I’ve only dabbled a little so let’s see how it goes!
From a professional development perspective, I regularly attended the OpenSAP courses on offer but did miss a few related to S/4HANA I will be trying to pick up early in 2020 using some reactivation codes I have purchased.
One of the goals I set in 2019 was to become certified in SAP Cloud Platform and unfortunately this alluded me, but this will not be the case in 2020.
I have purchased the certification book late last year and will be organising myself to get certified soon. My other main goal for 2019 was to invigorate the SAP Community as I believe it should be a lot stronger in Melbourne than it actually is. I did this by organising SAP Tech Nights (SAP Inside Tracks) and for the most part these were received well through the year. While a lot of people registered for the events, attendance was still mixed on the actual night itself however this I believe is a by product of the world we live in. I hope this gets better in 2020 – that is – when people register for events they actually turn up. What a novel idea (read in sarcasm here please!) ?. Some of the events I organised had a 30-40% conversion rate which is pretty bad IMO.
In 2020 I am organising similar SAP Tech Night events however have a major exciting announcement coming soon about a full day event (blog to come in a few days!). This will give SAP Community members here in Melbourne a chance to learn and hear about a number of different topics including C/4HANA, S/4HANA, HANA Development, SAP Cloud Platform topics as well as ideas to make projects successful. I also want to bring in a mindfulness session to balance against the technical development topics. Cannot wait for this so stay tuned and please spread the word!
Overall my SAP Community numbers were good in 2019.
You may remember that I set a goal of writing 2 blogs a month and I just literally checked the numbers (as I had not really been keeping track of this so closely) but I published 24 blogs for 2019! Wow – that was lucky! Phew!
I did want to write more reviews of OpenSAP courses I did (similar to those I wrote in 2018) however I just did not have enough time to write these up to be informative and interesting to read. Will see if I make that a goal for 2020! I did answer a number of questions, upvoted and also made it through to Day 32 of #100DaysofCommunityQA. Need to pick this up again in 2020.
From a SAP community development perspective I did spend some time on tutorials and missions (not as much as I wanted) and managed to receive a large number of badges. I am amazed looking back at 2019 how many I did actually receive – especially when comparing against 2018. This will be hard to beat in 2020 but as you can see I have already received a badge :-)!
Figure:1 My Earned Badges in the SAP Community
To up the ante this year I am setting a goal of 3 blogs a month – yes, I think this will be difficult but hey to get anywhere in life you need to set some pretty high goals and sometimes you may not achieve them but the key is working as hard as possible to try. This is also in line with my SAP Community hashtag of #2020YearofSAPBlogs. C’mon peeps, get on board with this and spread the word. What will your SAP blog goal for this year be? This does not have to be a number of blogs you write, it could be writing a blog in a new topic area, or selecting a new topic to learn about. Whatever it is, choose your poison (your goal) and let the SAP Community know by commenting below. Looking forward to hearing from others on their goals.
Other than blogs I will still contribute in 2020 by answering questions, up voting, liking, commenting and providing mentor ship within the SAP Community generally. Another cool concept I thought of last year was the challenges – so don’t forget these ones.
#LikeSAPBlogChallenge – all you need to do is find a Blog and Like it. SIMPLE!
#UPVoteSAPQAChallenge – simply find a Question or Answer and UP vote it.
#FollowSAPTagsChallenge – find new topics/tags and Follow them.
#FollowSAPBlogChallenge – all you need to do is find a Blog and Follow it. SIMPLE!
#FollowSAPMemberChallenge – simply find a SAP Members profile and Follow them.
#AddCommentstoSAPBlogChallenge – simply find Blogs you like and Add Comments!
I am hoping they went a long way to invigorating activity within the SAP Community.
The main topics I blogged about in 2019 included SAP Community, SAP Cloud Platform, SAP Cloud Platform Workflow, SAP Cloud Platform Mobile Services, SAP Inside Track, SAP TechEd and lastly SAP Cloud Platform Identity Authentication. Would be good to expand this list in 2020 – will try my best. ? Most of my blogs relate to Personal Insights and Technical Articles although I also covered the SAP Tech Nights in the Event Information category. I was most happy about some of the comments I received to my blogs. I have received great feedback on my Like…Follow…Comment…REPEAT blog. I had a lot of fun writing this and it topped my received Likes total with 37. I had a number of blogs reach over 1000 views which was great. The following blog though reached over 3000 views – https://blogs.sap.com/2019/01/30/activating-and-running-fiori-cloud-subscription-apps-in-sap-cloud-platform/ – which I am really happy about. For me, I write blogs because of the possibility that I helped a large number of people learn something they did not previously know about. So even if only 10 people benefited from the above blog post – this is still great for me. It is 10 more than zero and I am sure the flow on positive impacts from those people setting it up in their own organisations will be even greater! For this, I am seriously glad ? and this is one of the reasons why I keep posting blogs!
Continuing on with SAP Community items, I plan to attend more online sessions in 2020 like the #HandsOnSAPDev sessions run by my friend DJ Adams of which you can find the introduction on Youtube here. Seriously great learnings, all of DJ’s sessions are must attend events but if you do miss them you can watch them on replay which is great. I’ve yet to attend Maximilian Streifeneder sessions but will give it a shot early in the new year. I believe his first session is on 16th January (17th in Australia) so stay tuned. You can check this out here. For developers, these are also must attend events.
As a SAP Champion I also have the opportunity to run my own SAP Community session on a topic of my choosing. I have a few topics in mind so will be scheduling them soon, so look out for them.
From a personal point of view, I still need to work on my work-life balance but one major part that has helped me through the year is my running. I was really happy with my running stats this year and those connected with me on Twitter would already know them (as I post every run I do ?). I completed 102 runs for 2019, running over 560km (with individual runs between 5-10 km) and close to 46 hours of running. In 2020 I am going to try and run every second day and also throw in some bike riding (weather permitting) with my family. I also need to spend more time with friends. Work took way too much of my time in 2019! In 2020 I also want to increase my reading. I did not read as much as I wanted to in 2019 for a number of reasons however I will start with Lee Child’s new one in the coming weeks and go from there. I did manage to listen to a lot of music in 2019 with my top artists in Spotify being Khalid (whom I also managed to see live in concert), Amy Shark, MARINA, Lana Del Rey and Billie Eilish. I do love Spotify, really easy to listen to music.
My biggest personal highlight though was seeing my son perform one of the lead roles in a seriously professional Fame production at his school. Who knew he could sing and act?? Not me but he put his heart and soul into it, gave up a lot of study hours (given he was in his final year – year 12) and personal time but overall killed it. His results in the VCE were absolutely brilliant as well given all of the extra curricular activities he did during the year – top 5% was an amazing result. Really really proud and in awe of how well he conducts himself in all facets of life.
I am truly blessed with my family, so definitely aiming to spend heaps more time with them in 2020.
I would like to leave this blog post with an excerpt of lyrics from one of my favourite songs from the Fame musical production called “Bring On Tomorrow”. This song resonated closely with me, especially when looking forward to the year ahead – 2020! Do yourself a favour and listen to the words in this song, very beautiful and inspiring. Here is one version of the song from Youtube – here.
The specific section of words I really like are as follows.
Bring on tomorrow
Let it shine
Like the sun coming up on a beautiful day
It’s yours and mine
We can make a difference
It’s not too late
Bring on tomorrow
We can’t wait
(from Broadway Musical production)
So, you can make a difference by getting involved in all things SAP Community. It will bring you joy and you will meet some great people – not to mention boost your profile in the SAP world.
Wishing everyone an amazing 2020!
Thanks again for reading and look out for some future blog posts – coming soon!!!