With the #youlearnSAP trainee program, IT professionals and graduates with a business administration background can accelerate the digitalization of business processes at the interface of IT and business, and immerse themselves step by step in the complex world of SAP through a wide range of customer projects. Miriam, one of the first program participants, tells us about her experiences.
How did you get started at T-Systems?
Miriam: My first contact with Telekom was back during my studies as part of an internship in recruiting. That's also where I found out about the trainee program which I went on to apply for.
What makes the #youlearnSAP trainee program different from other trainee programs?
Miriam: Beyond the general introduction to the world of SAP, what's special about the #youlearnSAP trainee program is that it immerses you in the technical specializations, such as finance or HCM, from the outset. In the first two months of the trainee program, we had training sessions that prepared us for the "SAP Business Process Integration" and the "SAP Activate Project Manager" certification, to name just two examples. Then we had our first practical assignment, where we used learning-by-doing in customer projects to apply and deepen our theoretical knowledge. This also gives you the chance to complete further certifications in your specialization.
This makes it possible to build up both technical and business know-how right from the start. The interface between IT and business is in particularly high demand.
Read all about the #youlearnSAP program.
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What skills and competencies do applicants need to bring to the table? What really matters?
Miriam: Applicants should have a keen interest in the digitalization of companies and a desire to put their knowledge to use in direct contact with customers right from the start. That means strong communication skills are vital. During the trainee program, participants take part in various seminars that focus on improving presentation and communication skills.
What made you choose this program?
Miriam: Thanks to my studies in international business administration, I had a background in economics. The program enabled me to expand this with technical know-how in the IT environment. It was precisely this combination that I found exciting. The trainee program was ideal for me as a newcomer with no prior knowledge of IT or SAP.
What was your first wow moment when you started the #youlearnSAP trainee program?
Miriam: I started the program in April 2020 just as we all went into lockdown. But despite the coronavirus pandemic, the program was very quickly retooled for a remote format. For the first two months, we were originally meant to attend training sessions together at different locations. Since face-to-face gatherings weren't allowed, T-Systems reworked the program using collaboration tools (e.g., MIRO Board) so that we could still get started.
Describe a project you were involved in during the trainee program?
Miriam: My first SAP project was an SAP greenfield implementation, a S/4 HANA reimplementation, for a customer in the manufacturing industry. Together with a senior consultant who was there to support me and answer questions, I was able to get to know the approach in an agile project and also make a contribution for the first time. Just a few months later I'd already been put in charge of my own subject areas and was going into more depth professionally. Within the project team, I was in contact with experienced senior consultants all the time to discuss points and fill in any gaps in my knowledge.
What about support during the program and contact with other program participants? Was there a community or network?
Miriam: We had both professional and organizational contact persons throughout the program. Many colleagues introduced themselves and their fields of activity and were always open to questions and suggestions. In August 2020, we were even able to meet and network in person. After completing our trainee program, we exchanged information on our current projects in calls we set up to stay in touch as much as possible.
What has happened since the program ended? How has your career path developed so far?
Miriam: After completing the trainee program the next step has been to work on customer projects. These can be in the industrial or public sector. You can gain further specialization in the respective SAP modules through practical experience. I have been working on various projects both internally and with external customers since August 2020 and have been able to take on more responsibility with each passing project. I am currently working on credit management issues, for example, and am looking forward to seeing what other tasks and projects will follow.
Finally, what was your absolute highlight in the #youlearnSAP trainee program?
Miriam: My absolute highlight was a face-to-face meeting with the entire trainee group in Frankfurt for a seminar lasting several days. There, for four days, we dealt with all facets of consulting work and were finally able to exchange ideas with each other in person. One of the highlights was meeting Elena M. Ordonez del Campo - Senior Vice President, Head of SAP Portfolio Unit - in person and being able to ask her our questions about the latest developments in digitalization.
And what other tips would you give to potential applicants?
Miriam: I can only recommend that all applicants get actively involved in all topics. Look for new ways to solve problems, share ideas with each other, and take advantage of all the resources and continuing education opportunities this program has to offer.