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The Language of SAP

by Kristen Kohrt

May 28, 2010

By Kristen Kohrt, Associate Editor, HR Expert

Okay, I have to be honest – before I started working at WIS, I had never heard of SAP and had little experience with information technology. The thought of entering a new world of foreign concepts was very exciting for me. And a bit scary. It’s very, very much like learning a foreign language. I think most people would be nervous to enter a country in which they did not know the language.

I worked as a newspaper reporter for several years before deciding to switch over to publishing. One takeaway I took from that experience is that in order to be a good reporter, you have to be willing and ready to become a pseudo-expert in every subject you write about. You have to be able to solve mysteries and learn foreign languages with every story. I wrote about everything from iron mining to making bio-diesel to raising show cats. Each story was like taking a crash course in that subject.

I am so grateful I had that experience because it’s helped me tremendously in my job at WIS. The difference is that I’m not just taking a crash course, I’m working toward becoming fluent in the language of SAP. I know it will take a while, but I think it will be worth it.

I am happy to say that I have enjoyed my language lessons so far. One reason is because I get to work with professionals specifically in HR. They are so passionate, so knowledgeable, and so eager and happy to share their knowledge. It’s a pleasure learning from these people and their passion and excitement for the technology is contagious. I find myself rather fascinated by the world of SAP ERP HCM, which makes editing articles for HR Expert more satisfying than I could have imagined. Wit h each article, I learn more and I learn something new. I am getting to the point where I feel somewhat comfortable talking to HR professionals about it – sort of like how when I was in Spain, I knew just enough Spanish to order a ham and cheese sandwich and ask where the bathroom was. I remember my Spanish instructor telling us about the turning point, when she realized she was fluent in Spanish. It was when she began dreaming in Spanish.

I guess when I start dreaming in SAP, I’ll know I’m fluent. Too bad there is no Rosetta Stone for this language.




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