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Author's profile photo Svea Becker

The Art and Science of Debugging: SAP Community Member Interview with Daniil Mazurkevich

The SAP Community Member Interview Series addresses strategic topics, such as emerging technologies, learning, and other topics. It provides insights from SAP Community participants who are making a difference with their contributions (e.g., blogs, Q&A, sessions, etc.). This series provides insights into their interests and motivations which can inspire all of us.

Mastering the art and science of debugging represents a vital skill.

If it was easy, then everyone could troubleshoot bugs which impact IT and business challenges, technology, and impediments to successful outcomes.

From a software development standpoint, debugging is critical to achieving success. It requires the combination of creativity and intuition, along with pragmatic problem-solving skills and leveraging the best tools available.

Clearly, working in a professional developer or citizen developer environment can be fun, but if it does not work, then it is no fun at all. Too many professionals focus on a narrow set of assumptions instead of a more holistic approach to solving the problem. Debugging skills can be learned with patience, focus, and experience.

While there are many ways to approach the debugging, the seasoned professions typically address: identifying the error symptoms; pinpointing the cause; testing and fixing the error; and then documenting it so it does not repeat itself.

For Daniil Mazurkevich, a leading SAP Community contributor, and Senior SAP Extended Warehouse Management (EWM) expert at THEM Consulting, he likes to debug, solve issues, and find a way to resolve problems. In addition to answering Community users’ questions, he enjoys learning new things in the Community and openSAP to stay abreast of the industry which is evolving faster and faster than ever.

It was great to have the opportunity to catch-up with Daniil from his home office in Mannheim, Baden-Württemberg, Germany.

Svea Becker (SB): Hi Daniil! From your university days studying radio-engineering, to your days as a Senior Consultant at EY and LogiPlus Consulting, and now with THEM Consulting, you have zeroed-in on SAP EWM as a key area of expertise. What inspired you to focus on SAP EWM amongst your many professional interests?

Daniil Mazurkevich (DM): Hi Svea! I was always interested in IT, and during my studies I learned not only the physics of radio waves, but programming as well.

It became my focus area, and SAP was one of the best opportunities to start working in the IT industry. I decided to try it out as an SAP ERP consultant (Materials Management / Sales and Distribution).

At the beginning, it was enough to have a technical background and a will to learn. After some time, I switched to SAP EWM. For me, EWM was more interesting and appealing because it has shorter implementation time, which means more dynamic, and you work closer to the real world.

SB: How did you initially get involved in the SAP Community?

DM: During a project, we faced a strange issue in the interface between SAP ERP and SAP EWM. I spent some time troubleshooting how it could happen, and I decided to share my knowledge with the community. I did it from my old account, linked to another S-User (Blog Post – Unexpected behaviour of the RFC call ).

This was my starting point. After that, I wrote one or two more blog posts, but then I realized blogging is not really for me as it requires too much time to write something, like a “how-to guide,” or otherwise it is too technical.

What I did learn is that I like debugging, solving issues, and finding the right answer, and contributing to successful outcome! 🙂

SB: You have made various community contributions as represented by your many Community profile badges, blogs, and question and answer forum responses. What motivates you to take time out of your busy schedule to help others in the Community?

DM: When you work on a project, either as a consultant focusing on details you often only experience one or two areas, or much more as a solution architect. In this case, you are less focused on details, but see the bigger picture and overall processes (e.g., warehouse, goods related).

For the last couple of years, I worked quite some time only in fixed role areas, without a good rotation. Therefore, I decided to join SAP Community to stay tuned and fit across all processes. Besides, when I answer questions, I often also learn something new. 😊

SB: In your blog post, “Some EWM Performance Bottlenecks,” you highlighted some potential high loaded ERP-EWM integration challenges and solutions. Given the advances in large scale automation processes, do you suggest certain considerations to avert delays in the operations?

DM: It is hard to describe everything in few words, I am afraid we would need a separate session for this topic. Firstly, I would put together a quality SAP Basis team, which can work proactively.

If the system itself works well, it is important to test custom developments and to design properly. For example, if someone decides to update 50 items related to 10 different deliveries, it would not be fast enough to have it in the RF (radio frequency) transactions.

Recently, SAP added some special EWM ATC Checks that should help to prevent performance issues. Checks can be implemented starting from SAP S/4HANA 1909 (OSS: 3262092).

SB: You’ve been active with continuous learning, including recent openSAP certifications in…

  • Adapting the UI in SAP S/4HANA Cloud Using SAP Screen Personas
  • Ride the SAP HANA Wave: Fundamentals and Insights into Cloud Databases
  • Design Thinking in a Nutshell

What motivates you to stay relevant? Does broadening your knowledge help you when working with collaborative teams? Do you find yourself learning more for the “now” or more for the “future,” or both?

DM: First of all, I found openSAP really great! It has videos which you can see any time (e.g., in the evening or on a train). I enjoy this type of learning especially when there are no strict project deadlines, tests (or quizzes) help add some challenges to show what has been learned, and last but not least, the possibility to try new things in the system, which is the most important for me.

SAP is evolving faster and faster, and as a consultant I must stay tuned. openSAP helps me with skill development.

It is relevant to learn things for the “now,” like SAP Screen Personas; and other things to learn for the “future,” like SAP HANA Calculation views. In my situation, even though the SAP HANA course is not so relevant, it still helps to understand the development direction of SAP.

SB: As you look ahead to integrate SAP EWM as an integral part of the supply chain with the latest technology advancements such as speech-based picking, augmented reality, radio-frequency identification (RFID), autonomous vehicles, and warehouse robots, what interests you the most and why?

DM: I would be glad to work a little bit closer with the material flow system (MFS). It often requires you to have a low response timing and performance in SAP EWM, which has been one of my favorite topics lately.

I have experience working with Pick-by-Voice, MFS, and automated guided vehicles (AGVs), and did a small internal project with Arduino (an Open-source electronic prototyping platform) as well as RFID with integration to SAP EWM.

However, the most interesting opportunity for me would be to implement things, which are in close communication with SAP EWM and with a user. Luckily, THEM Consulting is in a close contact with Picavi, an innovative software company, who develops Pick-By-Vision systems, so I would be happy to implement it.

If you enjoyed this blog post, please leave a comment below, or check out Daniil Mazurkevich‘s SAP Community profile for more!

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