Four Qualities of a Successful SAP BPC Embedded Consultant
In the last few months I have been interviewing for SAP Embedded consultants and that made me think why do I prefer certain candidates over others. Here is a short list of the qualities that, in my opinion, every SAP Embedded consultant must have to be successful.
SAP is always evolving and SAP BPC Embedded is no exception. If you look at the history of planning in SAP, from transactional planning in ERP to SEM-BPC, BI-IP, Outlooksoft etc. the changes that have occurred may seem overwhelming. But it is no reason to sit back and expect your current or prospective employer to provide training. It is largely up to you. Be curious and access the multiple learning resources that are available online.
One of the interview questions I always ask is 'Tell me about some of the projects you do in your spare time'. Successful candidates usually can't stop talking excitedly about the new programming languages or problems they set themselves to solve. Unsuccessful candidates usually have excuses about work-life balance or that they don't have the resources available. One c candidate I really liked was systematically debugging through the SAP classes that handle FOX code to understand the mechanics behind the scripting language.
2. Master of many
This is closely related to learning. BPC Embedded consists of many different components. Succesful BPC Embedded consultants ensure that they are not labeled as 'functional' or 'technical' but can fulfill multiple roles on a project. For example, the expectation is for a consultant to be able to write basic ABAP and sql for planning functions, write FOX code, load and transform the data required for their planning application and so on. There is nothing more frustrating than a consultant saying he can't progress because he can't write basic sql in HANA for a characteristic relationship.
Having more than a basic understanding of a SAP functional module is also a significant indicator of a successful consultant. Knowing the SAP business process, configuration, and underlying tables is a must for any consultant I look to hire.
The right attitude can make up for a lot of sins. I prefer a consultant who will put in extra hours to learn a missing skill than an experienced consultant who works only set hours. This is also something that I learned the hard way. Being aloof, arrogant or confrontational is not the way to act on projects.
4. Be a trusted advisor
Having all the technical skills is not enough, especially if you want to progress to a senior consultant or solution architect. Can you recommend a solution that is correct for the customer, regardless of the specifications produced by the customer? Do you add value to the project and the customer over and above the coding and configuration you do? You want to be the person that everyone looks at when the going gets tough and creative and innovative solutions are required. If all eyes go to you in a workshop when the project is faced with a particularly difficult problem, you are probably close.
Let me know if you agree/disagree and if you can add other qualities.