10 Years of SAP Certifications by erp4students
10 years, 100 countries, more than 4000 participants each year – there is no other program worldwide that is comparable to erp4students. In only ten years, the program of the Brandenburg University of Applied Sciences has developed from an experiment to a worldwide established provider of SAP online courses exclusively for students. At the same time, the program focuses on the unique e-learning concept as well as the self-developed course materials. The cooperation with SAP University Alliances and SAP Next-Gen enables erp4students to provide the latest technology and SAP systems. All these features/attributes make erp4students not only popular with students, but it has also a good reputation within big companies. Meanwhile, the program has reached the level of a “global certifier” in the field of SAP and boosts the careers of young graduates.
For over ten years now, students from around 170 countries can acquire SAP consultant certificates in the fields of SAP S/4HANA, Business Warehouse on HANA, Financial Accounting with SAP S/4HANA, Controlling with SAP S/4HANA, and ABAP Programming with erp4students. The story behind erp4students, and how the program grew into what it is today, is more than interesting. It is a good example of having a keen sense for students’ necessities, being informed in developments on the job market, a thought-out instructive concept, and having clever minds in the background.
Historical Outline – The Beginnings
The program erp4students started as an experiment in the course of the Master of Science program named “VAWi” as an SAP online course, initiated by Professor Dr. Heimo H. Adelsberger in 2006. In the following years, the program developed and enjoyed popularity among students. On the one hand, erp4students offered a distinctive opportunity for students to acquire broad academic SAP knowledge. On the other hand, it was certain that companies look out more and more for graduates who are skilled in SAP software.
In 2008, the SAP board decided to make it possible for 60,000 people to receive SAP certifications. In doing so, the consolidation of business networks and the formation of ideal linkages between efficiency, transparency, and flexibility were in the focus. The main idea was to build a solid SAP community which goes beyond company borders. The executive organization of this project was SAP University Alliances (SAP UA). SAP UA enables schools and universities to include the latest SAP technology in research and teaching. It was a stroke of luck that at that time, erp4students had already partnered with SAP UA since 2006. From the beginning on, SAP UA was enthusiastic about developing an SAP e-learning concept for students. That is why SAP UA chose and kept erp4students as its strategic online partner. In the end, erp4students was responsible for more than 40% of all certifications at universities worldwide. That is a huge amount and success.
Historical Outline – Expansion, Academy Cube, and Award
Through the support of the SAP University Competence Center (UCC), erp4students already had earned a strong reputation and could continue to grow. Gradually, the course offer was extended in line with students’ needs and offered across more countries: after only a short time, erp4students covered seven different topics in the field of SAP and expanded across the EMEA region.
At the end of 2012, the next milestone of the program’s history was set. In November 2012, the 7th National IT Summit took place in Essen. To counteract the lack of talents on the job market in Germany, the Academy Cube was established. erp4students was one of the main parties involved in the context of the didactic development of courses. Jointly responsible for launching the Academy Cube was the co-CEO of SAP SE, Jim Hagemann Snabe and the Minister of Education and Research, Prof. Dr. Annette Schavan.
In 2013, erp4students was even awarded as a best practice project by the Ministry of Economics and Energy (Berlin) in the category Education.
The holistic offering, its experience and innovative character – illustrated by the early switch of the courses to S/4HANA – awarded erp4students the status of a “SAP Next-Gen Chapter for S/4HANA” in 2019. The idea behind the SAP Next-Gen Chapter award is to pass on practical knowledge to students and to qualify them in becoming specialists and executives.
Of course, SAP SE and erp4students are continuing to grow and evolving. Merely the development of SAP’s new database technology HANA and the switch from the worldwide used standard software SAP ERP to SAP S/4HANA are reason enough to develop erp4students’ course offer further. So, the introductory course “SAP ERP (TERP10)” was switched to the S/4HANA technology
in the winter term 2017/18. In doing so, erp4students was worldwide the first in the academic field to offer a course on S/4HANA. In the meantime, further courses such as SAP Business Warehouse
, SAP S/4HANA Customizing
, SAP Financial Accounting with SAP S/4HANA
and SAP Controlling with SAP S/4HANA (currently only available in the DACH region) have been switched to the latest technology, too.
The IT sector is one of the fastest changing and developing sectors. So, one can be sure that there is still room for more developments. The next changes at erp4students’ course offer are already set to adapt to future SAP innovations.
Worldwide, 7,400 S/4HANA systems have been implemented by end of 2019 and there is a rising tendency that more implementations will follow. Consequently, there is a huge need on the local and international job market for skilled workers who know about SAP’s standard software and have expertise for a future employer.
On the part of the consultants as well as of the users, academic as well as practical knowledge and skills in SAP software is more highly sought after than ever. erp4students contributes to the needs of students concerning first-class education. And so, erp4students is going to increase the market value of interested university graduates. After all, the young professionals of today are the bosses of tomorrow.
Sources: Brandenburg University of Applied Sciences