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ASUG Groups - Have You Realized Their Potential?

by Julie Beehler | SAPinsider

January 1, 2001

by Julie Beehler, President, ASUG SAPinsider - 2001 (Volume 2), January (Issue 1)
 

The search for peers with your same focus area and expertise - especially in an evolving industry like ours - can be both fruitless and frustrating. Company-wide restructuring, project alterations, and day-to-day developments cause job titles and positions to change at the blink of an eye. How do you effectively weed through the layers of infrastructure to find the right contacts?

     You go to ASUG.

     For a decade now, ASUG has uniquely structured its programs - specifically its Process, Industry, and Interest Groups - to reflect this need. Few, if any, professional organizations drill down to such a focused level, and even fewer are able to provide access to people who share your same interests and challenges.

     But ASUG's groups are more than just a networking base. They offer a unique repository of information. With direct access to fellow members and SAP contacts, each group provides first-hand knowledge of new developments within SAP and representation via the collective voice of ASUG. Most importantly, these groups are typically the first point at which new members become involved in ASUG.

     The groups are structured for and led by your peers and each one represents a specific process, industry, or interest:

  • Process Groups: These groups are organized around business processes, and have direct support from the appropriate organization within SAP. Examples of our 15 Process Groups include Financial Management, Human Resources, and Procurement.

  • Industry Groups: Groups in this category are aligned according to the SAP Industry structure. Examples of our 14 Industry Groups include Aerospace & Defense, Public Sector, and Retail.
  • Interest Groups: These subgroups form around specific topics within a process or industry. Our 36

    Interest Groups include Documentation & Training, Electronic Commerce, and Semiconductors, to name just a few.

     To illustrate the impact of these groups, let me briefly outline the emergence of one of our established ASUG groups, the ASUG Implementation Group.

     In 1996, a strong need appeared for companies to implement or upgrade their existing SAP applications. In addition to the consulting firms that coordinated these projects, many companies individually began to manage them as well. Following the 1996 ASUG Annual Spring Conference, the Implementation Group was formed.

     This group's popularity has grown over the past four years, and offers the following programs:

  • Fall conferences: Each fall, the Implementation Group sponsors a conference where attendance and subject matter differ from the ASUG Annual Conference & Vendor Fair. An average of 250 to 350 people attend the meeting and access information on SAP implementation experiences.

  • Panel discussions: The group has developed a panel to discuss lessons learned, and to address questions from companies that are in the process of SAP implementations and upgrades.

  • Track changes: Attendees at the annual conference have the option to move from one track to another based on specific interests, or to focus on new or continuous implementations.

  • Discussion threads: Utilizing one of the many functions available on www.asug.com, the group leads topic-specific discussion forums to help receive implementation feedback.

     These initiatives are just some components of the uniquely tailored education that membership in an ASUG group provides.

     I strongly encourage you to explore ASUG Process, Industry, and Interest Groups. For further information, visit www.asug.com, or contact ASUG Headquarters at groups@asug.com or 312-321-5142.

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