Enterprise Geeks Podcast – Team Players


Project teams need all players, even the scruffy ones

Join Ed and Thomas in this whirlwind episode that covers a wide range of great news and topics in the wide world of enterprise software. They are also joined by Craig Cmehil to discuss his new team and role within SAP.

Dearest eGheads, we need your show ideas. If you have questions, suggestions, or topic ideas for future episodes, give us a shout here. Enjoy!

Running Time: 70 minutes

Talking Points

  1. 00:15 – Random chit chat
  2. 02:10Apple iPad disappointment
  3. 11:56 – Fellow eGeek Craig Cmehil talks about his new position
  4. 25:30 – Continuing discussion on last week’s episode on Project Roles and followup SDN blog post by Vijay Vijayasankar
  5. 33:13Dice.com salary survey and the lucrativeness of ABAP and SOA
  6. 39:48Oracle Completes Acquisition of Sun
  7. 44:51SAP NetWeaver Customer Call Series
  8. 47:02What’s new in SAP NetWeaver Composition Environment 7.2?
  9. 54:32 – Thomas clarifies some NetWeaver ABAP 7.02 details and discusses his sessions for SAP Inside Track Bonn 2010 and Mastering SAP Technologies
  10. 60:23 – Wrap up

4 responses to “Enterprise Geeks Podcast – Team Players”

  1. Jon Reed says :

    Guys, great podcast as usual….want to comment specifically on, you guessed it, the ABAP salary number results from Dice. I don’t have any further info on that survey at this point, and I pretty much said this on Twitter I guess, but those numbers are just off. 115K might be the average for senior level ABAP leads I suppose, but no way is that an average for hands-on ABAP folks.

    It’s hard to know the impact of outsourcing on those numbers, but if there was no offshoring/outsourcing of ABAP folks, then there would be a lot more 50-60K programmers on site pulling that average down, in my opinion.

    I’ll talk at some point in more detail with David Foote of Foote Partners about this survey and get a couple specifics on the SAP salary numbers he sees on the ABAP side now and how they compare.

    Meantime, I will say that the biggest determinant on salary for ABAP folks remains level of management. (Junior, Senior, Team Lead, Project Manager, etc)

    Some companies do pay skills premiums, which don’t have as much of an impact on salary as management level but still matter. I’ll look into more detail on skills premiums for ABAP today. In one Tweet, I mentioned a few likely suspects, definitely Web Dynpro, likely RIA, perhaps mobile development, perhaps OO. The OO part seems to have take on a life of its own. I’ll try to hunt down some more specifics. Unfortunately sometimes it’s less a matter of getting a pay bump and more a matter of basic job stability – that’s where staying ahead of boilerplate work does pay off…after all, workin’ for da man sure beats not workin’.

    I posted a long comment on Solution Architect/BPX roles on Vijay’s blog days ago and I’ll leave it at that for now. 🙂

  2. Leonardo De Araujo says :

    Guys, great job.

    You just opened a can of worms with the ABAP salary survey…
    I agree with John. I haven’t seen the survey itself, but for me it looks VERY off….
    In my experience, ABAP rates are always lower than functional positions (at equivalent experience level, of course). That is very understandable (even if not right sometimes), cause functional positions require business background and business knowledge (University degrees maybe). But please, lets not get into a huge argument here about it. I agree too that I have had my share of useless functionals (like any other profession).
    Now, if we stick to the functional side, Project managers tend to make more. Also niche skills like BW, PI, SOA, Solution Manager and even workflow for that matter, are better paid, again no rock science here. Demand and supply…
    Now, talking about DICE numbers. Did you check BPX postings? ZERO.

    Now, for the fun of it, please check this following website: http://www.itjobswatch.co.uk/
    Sure it is only UK applicable, and has errors cause it is counting words, but you can get some interesting numbers there…
    1 – Project Manager is the 19th best paid
    2 – If you search using SAP as the criterion, you will get Project Managers, Architects, then functionals and last technicals.

    Just my 50 cents.

    Leonardo

  3. Leonardo De Araujo says :

    oh, and I forgot to add:

    There is indeed some discrepancies in the definition of the Solution architects. I agree with Ed’s approach where BPX tend to be this higher level (architect) on the business side of things. And the “Solution Architect” more used for the higher level “Architect” on the technical side.
    I believe that even SAP is victim of these “loose” meaning of Solution architect, let me explain: As SAP Consulting, there is a level of consultants that represents (or is supposed to) the highest level of seniority in a given field. Those are the Platinum consultants. Very high billable rates. It is a level that has some similarities with the upcoming MASTER certification level (there is a nomination process and all). Someone that workds with me is a very senior guy at SAP and he has been a Platinum for a while. A way SAP found to distinguish him further was to call him “Solution Architect”. He knows ABAP, but he is Functional guy.
    So, according to our approach, he should be called Business Process Expert or whatever, but not a Solution Architect. That just helps confusing us…

  4. Vijay says :

    Project roles is a fascinating discussion, and we can probably go on for years and years and still find it worth talking about. And thanks for mentioning my blog. I know Ed and I don’t agree 100% on this topic – but that is good. It is always better when we bring different perspectives.

    When I had my first job as an ABAPer, I vividly remember the head of SAP practice at my company refering to my gang as “they are just ABAPers”. This has a had profound influence on me – and ever since I have had this bias, and when I got leadership opportunities, I always made it a point to make sure my techies get their due recognition. I still am as passionate about ABAP as when I started.

    However, ABAP salaries are a different story. I have had significant jumps in my own salary since I moved on from ABAP into other things, and so have several people I know. I think it is a terrible injustice to underpay ABAPers, but then the world has never been a fair place to begin with. It is not just offshoring – average ABAP skills are easy to learn, and hence the sheer volume of average ABAPers is very large even in US. So it is natural that ABAP as a whole gets hit, and the minority of excellent ABAPers suffer as a result.

    At least in consulting organizations, management level is usually the yardstick for salary. I have not seen any ABAPer getting a big salary hike after he has learned how to do a service proxy, or learned OO. However, when hiring from market, consulting companies do give some premium for cutting edge skillsets.

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