I have just passed my SAP SD certification exam on 27th August 2013. TW Typewriter gave me an idea to share my experience so I want to share my thoughts and findings which I got after this exam. Thank you TW Typewriter for giving me this nice idea. These might be helpful for some professionals who are already in SAP career and also for those who want to get in SAP.
I will be discussing two aspects of certification exam. For those who are already in SAP profession in any module or area but not certified yet and for those who are not in SAP profession but want to get in after passing certification and they are preparing for it or planning to prepare.
My Certification Preparation and Attempt
I have been working in SAP since mid of 2009. When I started my career I was not aware of SAP and its certification. I got into SAP accidentally I went in a local company here in Pakistan for an interview for the position of Customer Service Representative but they said since you are not experienced so we can’t take risk by giving this opportunity to you but you can avail Management Trainee Officer MTO Position in SAP. I accepted that and when I started my career I came to know that there is a certification of SAP which can be beneficial for me to get some other good position in consultancy or in any other client. When I heard its exam fee and got its manuals I got scared that what if I failed to pass it. I didn’t even try to study those manuals (SAP Certification Books) with this fear. My first two years of career were dedicated for learning and I learnt everything through SCN and my own efforts and testing in my DEV server. After two years my boss and colleagues suggested me to go for certification exam and then I started reading those manuals. When I read a few pages then few units, I came to know that these are nothing but just a piece of cake for me. I was already aware of all those things which were written and explained there with examples and it was just because of my experience and my contributions in SCN. I read both manuals TSCM60 and TSCM62 in my Samsung tablet. It was very easy and interesting to study in tablet as compare to study hard copies or in my laptop. I had finished those manuals almost one and half year ago but couldn’t appear in exam just because of that fear which was still there in my mind.
My friends and colleagues got their certifications in different modules and they encouraged me to go for it. I switched my job in new company five months back, AkzoNobel Pakistan which is again a support job. I decided to get certification to move in some consultancy firm. I enrolled myself with SAP Pakistan in end of August 2013 and I thought I will revise once again before one week of my exam date. Finally when academy guy told me that your exam will be on 27th August and be prepare for it I searched those two manuals again in my laptop and started reading them. One of my friend told me to do practice in dypo and I started it. It was interesting and I left manuals and practiced on dypo and some other sample questionnaires which I got from google. I just revised some specific units which were creating troubles in my preparation. When there were two days left in exam, academy guy shared some dumps (Sample question paper) with me and I also practiced those. This was my whole preparation and I was not assured even whether I will pass this test or not. I was nervous about exam but there was no stress in my mind and I even watched some movies in my last week of preparation
When I was there sitting on hot seat for solving the exam I was bit confused and excited too because I was thinking if someone can pass it without any practical experience then why can’t I pass it with years of experience. I solved few questions and all were correct and I was sure about them and it gave me more self-reliance. Then I just started solving questions without flagging any question and solved all 80 questions in one hour only. I checked all the questions once again and submitted it before one and half hour and I was sure to get 100% marks but don’t know which two questions were incorrect and the resulting percentage was 98%. I was excited and finally the fear was transformed in excitement.
My advice for SAP Professionals
For those professionals who are already working in SAP but not certified yet I have some pieces of advice. There are two beliefs in SAP professionals. Some people think that certification is nothing and this is just wastage of money and other think they should get certification to be SAP Certified Professional. For former I just want to share a blog written by Ravi Sankar with the subject of Top 10 Myths about SAP Certifications.
For later one I want to share that if you are working in SAP environment as SAP consultant or in any support role like me and its been more than a year then you can pass certification easily. Prerequisite for this is that you have personal interest in SAP and you are familiar with business processes, scenarios and SAP screens (front end and back end) and if you are in SAP from more than one year then you should know this all very well. The fear of failing this test will always be with you until you appear in exam so don’t wait for the right time or anything else, study the manuals just twice or even once carefully and do some practice on dypo or other sample questions and get your certification. No one is going to do it for you ever and you have to do it on your own even after a few months or years so why don't now? If you are waiting to get more experience and knowledge then trust me you are getting late for being a certified consultant. For an experienced guy this is not a big deal to pass exam with good percentage. I have asked you to study the material just once very carefully because I did this. If you feel you are not satisfied with studying it only once then repeat it and don't give up until you get some self satisfaction.
My advice for fresher’s
Those who want to get in SAP but they have not any practical experience yet, passing exam can be a little challenging for you. You guys need to study the materials with concepts understanding. Practice each and every exercise and don’t study the material like a newspaper or like any other syllabus book. SAP materials required practice along with studying. Open SAP screen with you while you are studying the material and see the screens and transactions. If you can manage to visit SCN forums then that will be a plus point and it will give you a lot of real time business scenarios. When you are done with your preparations, evaluate yourself by solving some dumps if you can get from your academy or from any other medium (Internet searching). Try to give solutions in SCN forum and be active member in your forum. If you can't give solutions then at least try to study the content and business processes. SAP exam will ask you all the questions conceptually. They are not going to ask you how many fields are there in any screen but purpose and use of the fields so it is good that you read F1 help or each and every field especially in IMG settings.
Three hours while attempting Exam
When you are sitting in exam and your time has started, don’t be panic and hurry. Take your time for every question, read the statements twice or thrice to understand the process and then chose your answer. Trust me three hours is more than enough for just 80 questions. Sometime examiner will try to confuse you with English statements and words like should be, must be, could be, can be and can only be etc. For a person like me (English is not my native language) these words can create confusion so before appearing in exam see the dictionary meanings of these words and then chose the answer.
Best thing About Certification Exam
Best thing about certification exam which also encouraged me to appear in it is that they have told you how many correct answers are there. If you have 5 options and there are only 3 correct then they have mentioned in question “Please chose the correct answer. There are three correct answers” My seniors told me that this was not the practice of SAP when they passed the exam but now they have added this in exam. May be they will again exclude this facility but currently this is how they are going to ask you to choose correct answers. In five options if you don’t know exactly which three options are correct then find two which are wrong. Rest of the three will be correct and you can choose them. Some time using the common sense can give you some marks Seriously this technique helped me in my exam and there were some questions which I was able to solve just because of this trick.
If they have not mentioned anything then it means there is only one correct answer and you wouldn't be able to choose more options.
Last but not the least is to be prepare for exam before at least one day of your exam date. In your last day don’t study the manuals. Try to solve some sample questions and have a good and peaceful sleep. Go in your exam with fresh mind and try to be there at least thirty minutes before. These are the things which academy guy will also share with you.
Don’t wait and get your certification. SAP certification will give you and your employer more confidence and you will feel the difference inside you after passing it. I have just shared my own experience and if you are agreed with my techniques and progression then and if you have your own then share those in your comments.
Good luck and stay blessed.