SAP and Enterprise Trends Podcasts from Jon Reed (@jonerp) of
Free spirited, old school podcasts on all things enterprise with Jon Reed of, along with troublemakers and/or special guests
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SAP is at a crossroads. This year's combined SAPPHIRE/ASUG conference was a significant event in terms of how SAP positions itself for the next five years.

In this podcast interview with ASUG President Rod Masney, SAP Career Expert Jon Reed talks to Rod about this year's combined ASUG/SAPPHIRE conference. He also asks Rod about the biggest challenges SAP users are facing and how ASUG impacts SAP's product evolution.

In this 23 minute podcast, Rod speaks about these topics and more, including:

- How to get the most out of the upcoming ASUG/SAPPHIRE conference: Rod shares his thoughts on the advantages of the combined format and how attendees can benefit.

- The biggest challenges SAP users are facing: Jon asks Rod what he's learned from ASUG's own user surveys and discussions.

- How ASUG is helping SAP customers address upgrade issues: Upgrades can be massive projects with plenty of misfires. Learn how ASUG is helping customers share information and lessons learned.

- Making sense of SAP lingo and version releases: Jon wants to know if Rod can clear up the confusion regarding version releases. Rod explains how SAP is settling on mySAP 2005 as its foundation release.

- The evolution of Web Services and SOA: from hype to actual case studies: Is SOA the real deal or just "brochureware"? Rod shares his take.

- Debunking the myth that SAP only serves the needs of large companies: SAP's push into the mid-market is discussed.

- How SAP users are impacting the direction of SAP through Influence Councils: ASUG has had a huge impact on SAP's own software in recent years. Find out why.
Direct download: pcast_0410_sap_reed_masney01.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 6:00am EDT

Listen in with Jon as he talks with one of the most influential and compelling voices in the SAP community, Michael Doane.

Along with Jon, Michael is the co-author of The SAP Consultant Handbook, and his recently updated SAP Blue Book has become the industry standard for all business readers looking to get a handle on SAP.

In this in-depth, 45 minute interview, Jon and Michael sit down for a frank look at a changing SAP market full of new opportunities but plenty of challenges.

During this "state of the industry" discussion, Jon asks Michael for his take on a number of key questions facing SAP professionals, including:

- How the SAP market rebounded, and what factors contributed to SAP's market surge.

- Michael's work at Performance Monitor and why Performance Monitor is uniquely positioned to monitor SAP (and Oracle) consulting trends.

- Why Michael updated the SAP Blue Book and what has changed in the SAP market since his first edition.

- The drivers that will push the SAP market forward in the next five years.

- What key skills SAP consultants are lacking now and what skills they will need to add to stay competitive.

- Why "offshoring" has had such a big impact on SAP consulting and why Michael thinks that "ABAP is dead" as a good consulting niche.

- Why Michael is a bit skeptical of "Business Intelligence" hype.

- How SAP and Oracle are positioning themselves as they battle for the mid-market.

- The importance of choosing skills over rates.
Direct download: pcast_0307_sap_reed_doane01.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:31am EDT

Sit in with Jon and Brian Trout, SAP Practice Manager at B2B Workforce, for 45 minutes of straight talk on where things stand for SAP consultants in today's market.

Jon and Brian move beyond the NetWeaver hype for an in-depth look at which skills are hot and which are not. Brian's take on the SAP market has influenced many SAP consultants. Check out this podcast and find out why.

Jon and Brian cover themes such as:

- Are the core functional consultants having the last laugh? Why is work shifting away from the previously-titled "New Dimensions" products like APO, SEM, and CRM?

- What are the hottest areas in SAP consulting now, and how are upgrades fueling the consulting demand and the types of opportunities available?

- Why is there so much confusion about SAP product names and version numbers? How do the NetWeaver and mySAP release numbers match up? Which components fit into the new ECC (Enterprise Core) releases?

- Are companies getting the message and upgrading to 6.0, or are they also upgrading to other SPA releases? Which versions of SAP are most marketable for consultants?

- Get Brian's take on why SAP consultants should choose skills over rates. Find out how the elite consultants he knows stay in demand.

- Is ABAP programming "dead" as a career path? Brian offers his take on the type of SAP programmer who can succeed in today's outsourcing-heavy market.

- Find out why Brian thinks that functional consultants need to move beyond configuration skills. Hear Brian's view on why business process and industry knowledge matters more than ever.

- NetWeaver isn't just impacting technical consultants. Brian shares how NetWeaver is changing functional SAP consulting.

- Hear why Business Intelligence is here to stay, and why functional consultants should also be adding BI and BW skills to their profile.
Direct download: pcast_0307_sap_reed_trout01.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:25am EDT

In Jon's first-ever podcast appearance, Jon is interviewed on a podcast hosted by (Original version can be heard on This 18 minute "State of the SAP Job Market" podcast features Jon's take on where SAP consulting is headed as we begin the "upgrade era."

The focus of the podcast is an in-depth look at the changing SAP job market. Jon's portion of the interview begins at the three minute mark. During the 15 minute discussion, Jon comments on:

- How the SAP job market has evolved since the year 2000 and how SAP has overcome the challenges it has faced since Y2K.

- How SAP triumphed over the best-of-breed market in CRM and other area and why that's good news for SAP consultants.

- Why the era of "enforced upgrades" should be a good one for SAP professionals and why software markets are at their healthiest when there is a carrot (new functionality) and a stick (fees for extended maintenance).

- The potential impact of SOA and Web Services and how consultants can anticipate these technology trends.

- Why the "death of ABAP" is premature and why SAP is still invested in the future of ABAP.

- What the "SAP Programmer of the Future" will look like.

- What the impact of outsourcing will be on technical (and functional) areas of SAP.

- Why RFID hasn't taken off as an SAP consulting niche and how consultants can position themselves in this emerging area.

- The impact of CRM On-Demand Solutions and whether there will be a good consulting niche in this area.

- Why Sarbanes-Oxley and "Compliance Consulting" has not been especially popular, and how SAP consultants can incorporate compliance and regulatory skills into their skill sets.
Direct download: pcast_0406_searchsap_reed01.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:21am EDT