Five Steps to Hire the Right SAP Consultant
With support for SAP’s legacy ceasing at the end of 2025, hiring the right SAP staff will be crucial to maintain your competitive advantage in your market. There will be many challenges to overcome to transition to S/4HANA, and the quality of your SAP consultants will be a big determinant of your success in doing so.
The question is, how do you hire the right SAP consultant? Here are the steps we recommend.
Step 1: Decide on the Functions of the Role
What do you need your consultant to achieve in the role you are hiring for? You’ll need to decide whether the role is functional (for example, configuring the software solutions for the operations of your business) or technical (working on programming and software integration).
You should identify the stage at which you wish your SAP consultant on boarded – for example, during blueprinting to address your unique business needs or simplification of your SAP solutions – as well as the level of management responsibility your consultant will provide.
Step 2: Develop a List of Skillsets
Understanding what you expect from your SAP consultant, you must now develop a set of skills that you are seeking. These will fall into those skills that are required, and those skills that are desired:
- Required skills are those that the consultant must have – without which they will not be able to perform their duties.
- Desired skills are those that would enhance the consultant’s contribution, but are not deal breakers. Perhaps skills that you have identified could be coached or learned while in position.
Step 3: Start Your Consultant Search
With the role and skillset defined, now is the time to start your search for the consultant you need. This consultant could be a local to work on premises, or perhaps could work remotely and virtually. Compose a comprehensive job description based upon what you have decided in steps 1 and 2, and then begin your search for talent.
The primary routes to finding a talented SAP consultant are:
- Within your professional network
- Within the list of previous consultants who you have rejected
- In your organization’s network of partners
- From an extensive social media search (especially via LinkedIn)
- By employing the reach and expertise of a specialist staffing agency
Step 4: Screen Your Candidates
When hiring, you’ll want to narrow your list of candidates as quickly as possible. According to the iCIMS 2019 Benchmark Report, it takes an average of 66 days to hire tech talent as employees. Each day without your vacancy filled is a day added to project timeline, a day lost in productivity, and a day of extra costs because the vacancy remains unfilled.
Hiring a consultant is much faster than hiring an employee, and one of the primary reasons is because the in-depth screening process is no longer required.
As we discuss in our article ‘How do you screen for Python Developer roles? ’, there are three key steps when screening candidates for technology employee positions:
- The resume screen, examining the candidate’s qualifications and experience
- The virtual/phone screen, as an initial test of skills, experience, and cultural fit
- The online test, to confirm the candidate’s ability
Because we’ve screened our people, hiring consultants removes this onus from you, enabling you to interview to test the consultant’s deep knowledge, soft skills, and cultural fit. Consequently, the hiring of a consultant for your role can be very quick – potentially in just a few days.
Step 5: Check References
The last step in the hiring process is to check references that the candidate provides. Experience has taught us that you should receive references from previous employers. If you don’t receive a reference, then this could be a red flag. Here again, our consultants have had their employer references thoroughly checked – meaning you don’t suffer the time lag that this referencing creates.
Prepare for Time and Effort
Be prepared for the hiring cycle. Finding the right SAP consultant is not a task that can be completed overnight. It takes time and effort. This time and effort is rewarded by hiring the consultant that can make a real difference to your business.
The initial time and effort will be rewarded with a hire who not only has the right skillset and experience, but is committed and a good cultural fit for your organization.
Of course, you could always get in touch with us here at TotalTek, and gain access to our bank of exceptional SAP qualified and experienced consultants.